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A Compilation of Quotes of Temple Ordinances

1. History of the Church, Vol. 2:112, Joseph Smith, Monday, June

23, 1834.

A council of High Priests assembled in fulfillment of the

revelation given the day previous, and the following individuals

were called and chosen, as they were made manifest unto me by

the voice of the Spirit and revelation, to receive their


  Edward Partridge Simeon Carter  

  William W. Phelps Newel Knight

  Isaac Morley Parley P. Pratt 

  John Corrill Christian Whitmer

  John Whitmer Solomon Hancock 

  David Whitmer Thomas B. Marsh 

  Algernon Sidney Gilbert Lyman Wight

  Peter Whitmer, Jun.

2. History of the Church, Vol. 2:197, Oliver Cowdery, Sunday,

February 15, 1835.

He (O. Cowdery) then read again, from the revelation, what

the Lord said unto the Twelve. Brethren, you have had your duty

presented in this revelation. You have been ordained to this

holy Priesthood, you have received it from those who have the

power and authority from an angel….

Never cease striving until you have seen God face to face.

Strengthen your faith; cast off your doubts, your sins, and all

your unbelief; and nothing can prevent you from coming to God. 

Your ordination is not full and complete till God has laid His

hand upon you. We require as much to qualify us as did those who

have gone before us; God is the same. If the Savior in former

days laid His hands upon His disciples, why not in latter days?

* * *

Remember, you are not to go to other nations till you

receive your endowments. Tarry at Kirtland until you are endowed

with power from on high. You need a fountain of wisdom, know-

ledge and intelligence such as you never had. Relative to the

endowment, I make a remark or two, that there may be no mistake.

The world cannot receive the things of God. He can endow you

without worldly pomp or great parade. He can give you that

wisdom, that intelligence, and that power, which characterized

the ancient saints, and now characterizes the inhabitants of the

upper world.

3. History of the Church, Vol. 2:218, Joseph Smith, March 1835.

The school in Kirtland closed the last week in March, to

give the Elders an opportunity to go forth and proclaim the

Gospel, preparatory to the endowment.

4. History of the Church, Vol. 2:307-310, Joseph Smith, Thurs-

day, November 12, 1835.

This evening, at 6 o’clock, met with the Council of the

Twelve, by their request. Nine of them were present. Council

opened by singing and prayer. And I made some remarks as


The Prophet’s Remarks to the Twelve

….I supposed I had established this Church on a permanent

foundation when I went to Missouri, and indeed I did so, for if

I had been taken away, it would have been enough, but I yet

live, and therefore God requires more at my hands. The item to

which I wish the more particularly to call your attention

to-night, is the ordinance of washing of feet. This we have not

done as yet, but it is necessary now, as much as it was in the

days of the Savior; and we must have a place prepared, that we

may attend to this ordinance aside from the world.

We have not desired as much from the hand of the Lord

through faith and obedience, as we ought to have done, yet we

have enjoyed great blessings, and we are not so sensible of this

as we should be….The house of the Lord must be prepared, and

the solemn assembly called and organized in it, according to the

order of the house of God; and in it we must attend to the

ordinance of washing of feet. It was never intended for any but

official members. It is calculated to unite out hearts, that we

may be one in feeling and sentiment, and that our faith may be

strong, so that Satan cannot overthrow us, nor have any power

over us here.

The endowment you are so anxious about, you cannot com-

prehend now, nor could Gabriel explain it to the understanding

of your dark minds; but strive to be prepared in your hearts, be

faithful in all things, that when we meet in the solemn assembly, that is, when such as God shall name out of all the official

members shall meet, we must be clean every whit. Let us be

faithful and silent, brethren, and if God gives you a manifestation, keep it to yourselves; be watchful and prayerful, and you

shall have a prelude of those joys that God will pour out on

that day. Do not watch for iniquity in each other, if you do you

will not get an endowment, for God will not bestow it on such…

You need an endowment, brethren, in order that you may be

prepared and able to overcome all things; and those that reject

your testimony will be damned….But let me tell you that you

will not have power, after the endowment to heal those that have

not faith, nor to benefit them, for you might as well expect to

benefit a devil in hell…

5. Oliver Cowdery Journal holograph at CHD. The first 22 pages

of book N6328R-LC, the rest of which is in the Nauvoo High

Council Minutes, 1839- 1840. Cowdery’s Journal covers the period

Jan 1, 1836 – Mar 27, 1836; pp. 4-5; Jan 16, 1836.

pp. 4-5 (Jan 16, 1836): the Postscript, “met in the

evening with bro. Joseph Smith, Jr. at his house, in company

with bro. John Corrill, and after pure water was prepared,

called upon the Lord (p. 5) and proceeded to wash each other’s

bodies, and bathe the same with whiskey, perfumed with cinnamon.

This we did that we might be clean before the Lord for the

Sabbath, confessing our sins and covenanting to be faithful to

God. While performing this washing unto the Lord with solemnity,

our minds were filled with many reflections upon the propriety

of the same, and how the priests anciently used to wash always

before ministering before the Lord. As we had nearly finished

this purification, bro. Martin Harris came in and was also


6. Oliver Cowdery Journal; holograph at CHD. The first 22 pages

of book N6328R-LC, the rest of which is in the Nauvoo High

Council Minutes, 1839- 1840. Cowdery’s Journal covers the period

Jan 1, 1836 – Mar 27, 1836; p. 7; Jan 21, 1836.

–p. 7 (Jan 21, 1836): This morning, at 15 minutes past

nine my little daughter is 5 months old. O Lord, I thank thee

that thou hast thus been merciful and spared my only child. At

about three o’clock p.m. I assembled in our office garret,

having all things prepared for the occasion, with presidents

Joseph Smith, Jr. F. G. Williams, Sidney Rigdon, Hyrum Smith,

David Whitmer, John Whitmer and elder John Corrill, and washed

our bodies with pure water before the Lord, preparatory to the

anointing with the holy oil. After we were washed, our bodies

were perfumed with a sweet smelling oderous wash. At evening the

presidents of the church, with the two bishops and their counsellors, and elder Warren Parrish, met in the president’s room, the high councils of Kirtland and Zion in their rooms. Those named in the first room were annointed with the same kind of oil and in the man[ner?] that were Moses and Aaron, and those who stood before the Lord in ancient days, and those in the other room with anointing oil prepared for them. The glorious scene is too great to be described in this book, therefore, I only say, that the heavens were opened to many, and great and

marvelous things were shown.

7. Edward Partridge Journal; Meetings – Kirtland 1836; d.1423/

f.159; typescript, pp. 2-3; 21-22 Jan 1836.

21st. Having previously washed once or twice, the presidency with Bishop Whitney and his counsel, myself & my counsellors

met for the purpose of being annointed with Holy oil. Meeting

was opened by Prest. Joseph Smith, Jun., in behalf of the

Presidency, Bishop Whitney in behalf of himself and counsellors,

and myself in behalf of myself & counsellors. Then the presidency proceeded to sanctify the oil. Br. Joseph Smith, Jun., first

anointed his father, pronouncing blessings upon him; then all

the presidents beginning at the oldest rubbed their hand over

his head & face, which had been annointed. Then Br. J. prayed to

the Lord to accept of the anointing and all the Presidency with

right hand uplifted to Heaven said Amen. Father Smith then

proceeded to take the lead and pour on the oil; then Br. J.

followed and then in rotation as before described, prophesying,

&c., on one anothers heads. After the presidents, Bishop Whitney

& his counsel were annointed after the same manner, then myself

and counsel, then Br. Parrish as scribe for the presidency.

After this Hyrum Smith annointed Father John Smith who annointed

the rest of the High Council of Kirtland. Br. David Whitmer

annointed Br. Simeon Carter, who annointed the High Council from

Zion. Hymns were sung & a number saw visions & others were

blessed with the outpouring of the Holy Ghost, and we shouted

Hosanna to the Most High. The meeting was dismissed (p. 3) Br.

J. S. Jun, conferring the benedictions of Heaven upon us.

The 22d. The forenoon was taken up in telling the visions

of the preceding evening. We met in the evening for the purpose

of anointing the traveling High Council, and the 7 Presidents of

the 70. The Presidents of the Church anointed Br. Carlos Smith

as President of the High Priests in Kirtland. Prest. J. S.

Jun., requested Prest. Sidney Rigdon to ask the Lord to accept

the performances of the evening, and instructed us, when he was

done, to shout Hosannah, Blessed be the name of the Most High

God. These things were performed; the shout & speaking in

unknown tongues lasted 10 or 15 minutes. During the evening,

more especially at the time of shouting, a number saw visions as

they disclosed unto us.

8. History of the Church, Vol. 2:385; Joseph Smith; Sunday,

January 24, 1836.

In the evening met the Presidency in the chamber over the

printing room, and counseled on the subject of endowment, and

the preparation for the solemn assembly, which is to be called

when the house of the Lord is finished.

9. Edward Partridge Journal; Meetings – Kirtland 1836; d.1423/-

f.159; typescript; 26 Jan – 6 Feb 1836.

The 26th. Mr. J. Seixas, our Hebrew teacher, met with us

for the first time. After about 4 or 5 days he divided the

class. I was taken into the first class.

The Priests, Teachers, and Deacons met 2 or 3 evenings,

about the last of Jan., for the purpose of being anointed.

Bishop Whitney and counsel and myself and my counsel met

and anointed them. After the anointing was over, each man asked

the Lord to bless them and seal upon them the blessings that had

been pronounced upon their heads by the Bishops and their

counsellors. Bishop Whitney then asked the Lord to seal the

blessings that had been pronounced upon the heads of his

brethren. After he was through we shouted Hosanna 3 times, to

God and the Lamb, Amen, Amen, and Amen.

The 6th. Evening all the quorms met, and had all the

blessings sealed by the Presidency of the Church; at the close

of the ceremony we all shouted, agreeably to the above described


10. Oliver Cowdery Journal; holograph at CHD. The first 22 pages

of book N6328R-LC, the rest of which is in the Nauvoo High

Council Minutes, 1839- 1840. Cowdery’s Journal covers the period

Jan 1, 1836 – Mar 27, 1836.

–p. 12 (Feb 6, 1836): In the evening met with the presidency any (sic?) quorums in the Lord’s house, when their anointing blessings were sealed by uplifted hands and praises to God. Many saw visions, many prophesied, and many spake in tongues. Closed a little before 12 o’clock.

–pp. 21-22 (Mar 27, 1836): Sunday the 27th attended on

the dedication of the Lord’s house. For the particulars of this

great event see my account written by myself and printed in the

March No. of the Messenger and Advocate, signed C. In the

evening I met with the officers of the church in the Lord’s

house. The Spirit poured out–I saw the glory of God, like a

great cloud, come down and rest upon the house, and fill the

same like a mighty rushing wind. I also saw [p. 22] cloven

tongues, like as of fire rest upon many. (for there were 316

present,) while they spake with other tongues and prophesied.

11. Edward Partridge Journal; Meetings – Kirtland 1836; d.1423/

f.159; typescript; 27 – 31 March 1836.

Sunday the 27th. Met and dedicated the House of the Lord.

Prest. Rigdon preached in the forenoon. Prest. J. Smith, Jun.,

made many remarks and delivered the dedication prayer. Meet at 8

morn & dismissed 1/4 past 4 afternoon. Met again in the

evening, that is, the Authorities of the Church. Many spoke in

tongues; some saw visions, &c. Doct. F. G. Williams saw an angel

or rather the Savior, during the forenoon service.

Tuesday the 29th. The 9 presidents, the two Bishops and

their counsel met in the afternoon in the House of the Lord. We

cleansed our hands and faces and feet, after which we had our

feet washed in the name of the Lord; this took till dusk. We

then partook of bread and wine, a feast. We prophesied and

spoke in tongues & shouted Hosannas. The meeting lasted till


Wednesday all the officers of the Church met at 9 o’clock

in the Lord’s House, the Priests, Teachers & Deacons in one

corner, the vails having been let down, and the other officers

occupied the rest of the lower room. The washing of feet was

performed by noon, then they began to prophecy and speak in

tongues adding shouts of Hosannas to God and the Lamb with Amen

and Amen. This continued till dark, when they partook of a feast

of bread and wine. The meeting was kept up till morning, the

shouts were omitted during the night.

Thursday 31st. We met from 8 to 9 to accommodate those who

could not get in at the Sunday dedication. The house was about

filled and similar ceremonies performed that were performed on

Sunday. This meeting rather surpassed the Sunday meeting, both

in length & goodness. Wednesday the 6th we had a prayer meeting

from 9 to 4.

12. Stephen Post’s Journal; BYU/Film/298/#126; 27 March 1836.

Typed as in original without the use of [sic]. The “/” indicates

where the entry line ended and the next line begins in the

original source.

March 27 and 1836 / This day was appointed to be a day /

when the house of the Lord built / by the Church of the Latter

day Saints / was to be dedicated unto the Lord / of the whole

earth: there was also / a contribution; each individual as /

they came into the house of the Lord / donated as they could in

order to de[-] / fray the expense of the building as the /

committee had incurred much expense a- / bove what had before

been contributed. / the doors were opened at 8 and to be closed

/ at 9 A.M. however they were closed be- / fore 9 on account of

the house being / full many retired to, and filled the sch- /

ool room, under the printing office which / holds 400 or 450 and

many went home. / The congregation came to order and president

/ Sidney Rigdon commenced the services of the / day by reading

the 96 Psalm and then the 24 / Ps. Then a song of praise then a

prayer by / President S. Rigdon then another song of / praise

and next a discourse from S. Rigdon / from Matthew VIII 18-19-20

particularly the / 20 verse; after the sermon the several /

quorums voted and arose as they were call- / ed upon to declare

that they acknowledge / Joseph Smith Jun. as a prophet, seer,

and rev- / alator to Israel. there was a song of praise / and a

short intermission the order of the house / was for the people to keep their seats; as / this day was appointed as a fast day unto / the Lord from morning until evening. / and. a song of praise Joseph Smith Jun. / first president of the church of Latter day / saints; took the lead and called upon the / several quorums separately to acknowl- / edge each other in their several capacities / There was present the following, and they / voted in the following order, to acknowledge / the prophet, first the Presidency 2nd the 12 apostles 3rd the / High Council, 4th the Bishopric including / the Bishop of Zion and his counsellors / 5th the Zion Council on the right of the / Bishopric 6 the 7 presidents of the 70’s / on the left of the Bishopric, 7th the / Presidency and council of High Priests, 8th / the President and council of Elders 9th / the whole congregation when the Bish- / oprick voted the whole Bishoprick was / included viz Bishop of Kirtland of Zion Presidents of the / Priests teachers and Deacons with their coun / cils, President Joseph Smith Jun. Offered / up a dedication prayer unto the Lord / President Sidney Rigdon offered a short / prayer and then led the way, followed by / the whole congregation acknowledging / the Lord to be King, this is the sample / of the shout with uplifted hands unto / the most high, by the Lord anointed / Hosanna! Hosanna! Hosanna to / God and the Lamb Amen! amen. and / Amen. this was done three times. / making 9 hosannas and 9 amens / they next partook of the sacrament and then / were dismissed after some testimony / during the partaking by the congregation / of the bread and wine in remembrance / of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, Joseph / Smith Jun. testified of the Angel of / the Lord’s appearing unto him to call him / to the work of the Lord, and also of being / ordained under the hands of the Angel of / of the covenant. President Hyrum Smith / and President O. Cowdery, testified of the / truth of the work which was made kno- / wn to them by the power of God. Car- / los Smith President of the High priests / testified of the truth of the book. / President F. G. Williams arose and testified / that in the A.M. an angel of God came / into the window (at the back of the pulpit) / while P. t. Rigdon was at prayer and took his / seat between him and Father Joseph Smith Sr. / and remained there during the prayer. / The ordained members of the church were / requested to meet in the Lords house this / evening to receive instruction previous to / their going forth to proclaim the gospel / the congregation were now dismissed / This eve assembled in the house of the / Lord Joseph Smith jun. read the 6 / chap. 11 Chron. and showed us the order of / dedicating a house to God anciently: this / evening was designed as a continuation / of our pentecost, Angels of God came / into the room, cloven tongues rested / upon come of the Servants of the Lord / like unto fire and they spake with / tongues and prophesied. / Last Saturday I received my patriar / chal blessing under the hands of / Joseph Smith Sen. Patriarch and / Evangellist I write this monday / march. 28 the roads are bare but there / is plenty of snow in the woods, and / considerable yet in the fields people / are preparing for sugar making as they / have not yet tapped any where yet as / I have heard. the air is smoky today / it was ascertained and told to us last eve / that there was 1000 persons in the house / of the Lord yesterday and they contributed / as they went in $960. I will ment / ion here that two of the Apostles Brigham / Young and David Patten sang each / a song of Zion in tongues and each spake / in tongues and Elder Patten interpreted / brother Youngs tongue which he spake / During Last week there was / 11 baptized in Kirtland. / there was about 316 ordained mem- / bers met in the house of the Lord / Sunday eve and we received instruction / from Joseph Smith Jr relative to our / preaching and to our endowment this / eve the spirit of the Lord rested on / the congregation many spake in tongues / many prophesied, Angels were in our / midst, and ministered unto some, Cloven / tongues like unto fire rested upon / those who spake in tongues and prophesied / when they ceased to speak the tongues / ascended.

Wen. 30. This day between the hours / of 8 and 9 the

ordained members met in / the house of the Lord to attend to the

/ last ordinance of the endowment viz: / the ordinance of the

washing of feet / this ordinance is administered to none / but

those who are clean from the blood / of the generation in which

they live. / I did not expect much to receive the or- / dinance

as I had not labored much / in the vineyard, but I had en-

deavour- / ed to do as well as I could. however when / we came

together the word of the Lord / was that we all should receive

the / ordinance. O the goodness and condescen- / sion of God. 

The washing was commen- / sed by the presidents who first washed

/ the 12 and the 7 presidents of the seventies / the 12 and 7

then commenced washing / until the whole were washed. The or- /

der of the house was that we tarry / until tomorrow morning in

the house / of the Lord and not go out only in ca- / ses of

necessity, after the washing the / Brethren commenced prophesy-

ing for the / spirit of prophecy was poured out up- / on the

congregation: the house was di- / vided into 4 parts by the

curtains and they / prophesied, spake and sang in tongues in /

each room. we fasted until even when / we partook of bread and

wine in commem- / oration of the marriage supper of the / Lamb. 

now having attended through / the endowment I could form an idea

/ of the endowment anciently for Gods / ordinances change not.

13. Journal of Jeremiah Willey; CHO/d.1422/ f.159/Copy 1; pp.

10-12; 1836.

I spent the night in the temple in prayer and fasting; the

spirit of the Lord rested upon us, April 6 the presidency of the

Church, the Twelve Apostles, and other quorums met in solemn

assembly and sealed upon us our washings, anointings and

blessings – with a loud shout of Hosannah to God and the Lamb,

the Spirit of the Lord rested upon us after spending three hours

in the upper room, the quorums rejoined to the lower court. The

Veils were lowered and the ordinance of washing of feet was

administered. After this ordinance the veils of the temple were

pulled up and the prophet addressed the Elders for three hours. 

Clothed with the power and spirit of God he unbosomed his

feelings in the House of his friends and gave much instruction. 

He urged upon us the absolute necessity of giving strict heed to

his teachings and counsel and the revelations of the Lord to the

Church and us in all things, that Zion and her stakes may be

redeemed and established no more to be thrown down. He said

that the kings of the earth would yet come to behold the glory

of Zion and that great and glorious blessings would be bestowed

upon the Saints in the Last Days. Hyrum Smith bore testimony

and was followed by Oliver Cowdery, who exhorted the Elders to

keep within the bounds of their knowledge and let the mystery of

the kingdom alone, for the Gentiles had not a knowledge even of

the first principles of the Gospel. He said it is far better to

preach what the people would call the small of the kingdom than

to enter into the visions of Isaiah, Ezekiel and John. The

Twelve broke bread, which was distributed to the multitude who

eat and were filled. Thanks were returned and the meeting

closed. The house was again filled at Candle Light. Pres.

Joseph Smith requested the Elders to speak their feelings freely

and sing, exhort and pray as the spirit would give utterance. 

The meeting continued during the whole night. Many of the gifts

were poured out upon the people; at Break of Day we were

dismissed. I also spent the night of the Y in the Temple with

several of the Elders in prayer and praise. Before the Lord the

Holy Ghost rested upon us and the spirit of prophecy was given

and many things were shown by the Holy Spirit.

14. Journal of Wilford Woodruff; Tuesday, April 4, 1837.

Met at the house of Elder Hales at one o’clock in the

afternoon, in the company of twenty-three Elders for the purpose

of attending to the ordinance of washing. President Joseph

Young, who was one of the number, opened the meeting by prayer

and we then proceeded with the ordinance. Myself and Elder G.

Meeks were the first washed under the hands of President Joseph

Young, and we then assisted him in washing our brethren, the

Elders. Much of the Holy Spirit rested upon us.

At early candle light we again met together in the quorum

of Seventies at the upper part of the Lord’s House to receive

our anointing. The quorums of the Priests, Teachers, and Deacons

occupied one apartment, the Elders another and the Seventies a

third; each quorum met for their anointings.

Three of the Presidents met with the Seventies, namely,

Joseph Young, Hazen Aldrich and Zebedee Coltrin. After the

meeting was opened by prayer those who were to be anointed were

suitably addressed, and then the Presidency proceeded to the

ordinance by first consecrating the oil. The person then

presented for the anointing took a seat and the Presidency laid

their hands upon his head and pronounced such blessings upon him

as the testimony of Jesus directed. We had truly a glorious

season in this solemn ordinance of the House of God. There were

fifteen anointed in our quorum. President Coltrin anointed me

and pronounced upon my head great blessings which were sealed

upon my head in the name of Jesus Christ and responded to by a

loud Amen from all present. The meeting closed about 10 o’clock


15. History of the Church, Vol 5:1-2; Wednesday, 4 May 1842;

with footnote at the end of the entry by B. H. Roberts.

Wednesday, 4.–I spent the day in the upper part of the

store, that is in my private office (so called because in that

room I keep my sacred writings, translate ancient records, and

receive revelations) and in my general business office, or lodge

room (that is where the Masonic fraternity meet occasionally,

for want of a better place) in council with General James Adams,

of Springfield, Patriarch Hyrum Smith, Bishops Newell K. Whitney

and George Miller, and President [p. 2] Brigham Young and Elders

Heber C. Kimball and Willard Richards, instructing them in the

principles and order of the Priesthood, attending to washings,

anointings, endowments and the communication of keys pertaining

to the Aaronic Priesthood, and so on to the highest order of the

Melchisedek priesthood, setting forth the order pertaining to

the Ancient of Days, and all those plans and principles by which

any one is enabled to secure the fullness of those blessings

which have been prepared for the Church of the First Born, and

come up and abide in the presence of the Eloheim in the eternal

worlds. In this council was instituted the ancient order of

things for the first time in these last days. And the communications I made to this council were of things spiritual, and

to be received only by the spiritual minded; and there was

nothing made known to these men but what will be made known to

all the Saints of the last days, so soon as they are prepared to

receive, and a proper place is prepared to communicate them,

even the weakest of the Saints; therefore let the Saints be

diligent in building the Temple, and all houses which they have

been, or shall hereafter be, commanded of God to build; and wait

their time with patience in all meekness, faith, perseverance

unto the end, knowing assuredly that all these things referred

to in this council are always governed by the principle of


Footnote: This is the Prophet’s account of the introduction of the Endowment ceremonies in this dispensation, and is

the foundation of the sacred ritual of the temples. There has

been some controversies as to the time when these ceremonies

were introduced into the Church. A sect styling itself the

“Re-organized Church,” even goes so far as to claim that these

ceremonies were not introduced into the Church by the Prophet

Joseph Smith at all, but on the contrary claim that they had

their origin with Brigham Young and the Apostles who followed

him in the migration from Nauvoo to Great Salt Lake Valley in

Utah. The evidence, however, against such claims, is overwhelm-

ing. First, the statement of the Prophet in the text above. 

Second, a previous allusion to the same thing in his remarks at

Nauvoo, on the 6th of January, 1842. (See History of the

Church, Vol. IV p. 492) Third, the same ceremonies are referred

to in the Revelation of Jan. 19, 1841, in which washings,

anointings, conversations, statutes, judgments, etc., are

explicitly referred to. (History of the Church, Vol. IV, p.

277.) In addition to this evi- [p. 3] dence also Ebenezer

Robinson, associate editor of the Times and Seasons when that

periodical was founded by Don Carlos Smith and himself, and who

at the death of Don Carlos Smith, 1841, became editor-in-chief

of that periodical, and so continued until the 15th of March,

1842–declares that such ceremonies as are alluded to in the

text were inaugurated by special action of the Prophet as early

as 1843. Mr. Robinson subsequently left the Church, but when in

1890, the aforesaid self- styled “Re-organized Church” persisted

in claiming that Joseph Smith the Prophet did not inaugurate

these Temple ceremonies, he published an article in the magazine

he was then conducting, called the Return, in which he bears

emphatic testimony to the effect above stated, namely, that all

these ceremonies were introduced into the Church by the Prophet

Joseph Smith at least as early as 1843. (See The Return, Vol.

II, No. 4, p. 252.)

16. Manuscript History of Brigham Young, p. 116; 4 May 1842.

May 4.–I met with Joseph, Hyrum, Heber, Willard, Bishops

Whitney and Miller, and Gen. James Adams, in Joseph’s private

office, where Joseph taught the ancient order of things for the

first time in these last days, and received my washings,

anointings and endowments.

17. Plural Marriage as Taught by the Prophet Joseph Smith, by

Helen Mar Whitney; published 1882; p. 14; c. 4 May 1842.

I have in my possession a daily journal, writen by my

father, of events which transpired in Nauvoo in 1842, 1843 and

1844, from which I extract the following:

`Strange Events’

“In June 1842, I was invited [initiated] into the ancient

order–was washed and anointed, sealed and ordained a Priest,

etc., in company with nine others, viz: Joseph Smith, Hyrum

Smith, William Law, William Marks, Judge Adams, Brigham Young,

Willard Richards, George Miller and N. K. Whitney.

“January, 1844, my wife, Vilate and many females were

received into the Holy order and were washed and anointed by

Emma Smith.”

18. Letter from Heber C. Kimball to Parley P. Pratt, dated 17

June 1842; Church Historical Department; c. 4 May 1842. [Typed

without sic.]

Nauvoo, June the 17  1842

  to Mr Parly P. Pratt


Or Liverpool

Dear Brother and Sister Pratt Sister Ollive not forgoten

by me. no I remember old friends. all though I have not

written to you fore some time, it has been on the acount of much

buisness. I am well my family are tolarble fare. it is a time

of helth in the City of Nauvoo. the Emegration is great here.. 

they are coming in here from most Evry State in the union this

place has grone half. since I got home the Temple is getting

on well. all seam to be interested in the concern. thare is a

great menny Brick buildings going up this season. thare is 7 or

8 Brick yards in this place, some have burnt three kills this

season. and men Stand Ready to take Evry brick as soon as they

are cool. Brother Joseph feels as well as I Ever see him. one

reason is he has got a Small company that he feels safe in thare

hands. and that is not all he can open his bosom to and feel him Self safe  I wish you was here so as to feel and hear fore your Self. we have received some pressious things through the

Prophet on the preasthood that would caus your Soul to rejoice I

can not give them to you on paper fore they are not to be riten. So you must come and get them fore your Self.– We have

organised a Lodge here. of Masons. since we obtained a Charter. that was in March since that thare has near two hundred been

made masons Br Joseph and Sidny was the first that was Received

in to the Lodg. all of the twelve have become members Except

Orson P. he Hangs back. he will wake up soon, thare is a

similarity of preast Hood in masonary. Bro Joseph Ses Masonary

was taken from preasthood but has become degenrated. but menny

things are perfect.. we have a prosession on the 24 of June.

which is cold by Masons St Johns day in this country. I think I

think it will result in good. the Lord is with us and we are

prosperd. Concidering all things. Money is scarce but provi-

sions plenty and cheap. the Saints that come from England–

have all got in to busness, and the grater part of them have got

places, those that have means to by with, by Lots. those that

have not go and take up lots on a disputed tract of land that

lays in the limets of the city it cost nothing. fore them. 

proberbly they will not be troubled fore sevrel years they go on

to the Island whare they get thare timber to build with and

burn. this land lays on the bank of the River. and stone

plenty by picking up. so what more can they ask  but at the

same time thare is menny that finds folt and are ready to denigh

the Lord and turn braters to thare Brethrn  Som have found folt

becaus we had not Housses fore them to go in when they got here

Some becaus we did not make more of them and invite them Home.

and provide for them we would be glad if they could know we have

as much as we can do to live our selvs we are thronged all the

day Long we would Esteam it a pleasure to retire from the Sean.

and rest our warry Souls fore a time but this will not do, we

must fite  Dear Br I can tell you our battle will be chort,

and others will have to front the battle  my dear wife send

much love to you and wife, you have my best wishes. you have my

prairs. there is much Excitement in this county on the acount

of our Election. we have nominated our own of Officers. and no

doubt we Shal Elect them this maks the Devle made and I am glad 

So amen. I am as Ever

/s/ Heber C. Kimball

19. Charles Walker, “Diary”; Church Historical Department; under

date given; also BYU Special Collections; Mor/M270.1/W151/Vol.

2; p. 444 of typescript; 26 July 1872; c. 4 May 1842.

Brigham Young speaking at the 14th Ward Meeting in Salt

Lake City, 26 July 1872:

(BY) Showed that the old members of the Church were fast

passing away, that lived when the Prophet Joseph was alive Said

that he was the only one alive out of seven that the prophet

revealed the Endowments and sealing to viz Hyrum Smith Heber C.

Kimball Bishop Whitney, Willard Richards and himself; the

others I do not recollect. [B. Young mentions there were only 7

who received the endowment on May 4, 1842 instead of the correct

number of 9, because he wanted to forever delete the names of Wm

Law and Wm Marks from the records of the Church since they were

apostates and caused persecution to come upon the saints.]

20. Willard Richards’ personal diary does not have any entry for

4 May 1842. There was no diary kept by Willard Richards for the

Prophet at this time.

21. Heber C. Kimball “Diary,” “Book 91”; Church Historical

Department; no date of entry; c. 4 May 1842.

Strange Events

June 1842 I was aniciated into the ancient order was

washed annointed and Sealled and ordained a Preast and So forth. in company with nine others. viz. Joseph Smith Hiram Smith. Wm

Law Wm Marks Judge Adams. Brigham Young Willard Richards, George Miller N K Whitney

January 1844 my wife Vilate and menny feemales was received

in to the Holy order, and was washed and inointed by Emma

22. Heber C. Kimball Journal; Extract of H. C. Kimball discourse

in the Nauvoo Temple; Church Historical Department; Under date

of 21 December 1845; also published by Helen Mar Whitney in

“Scenes in Nauvoo, and Incidents from H. C. Kimball’s Journal,”

Woman’s Exponent; c. 4 May 1842.

About 4 years ago next May nine persons were admitted into

the Holy Order 5 are now living — B. Young — W. Richards

George Miller — N. K. Whitney & H. C. Kimball two are dead, and

two are worse than dead [i.e. Wm Law & Wm Marks].

23. H. W. Miller, ed. “De Tal Palo Tal Astilla,” Annual

Publications–The Historical Society of Southern California, X,

(1917): pp. 120-121. Letter to “Dear Brother” June 26, 1855. 

See also 1 July 1855 letter; c. 4 May 1842.

Many of the Apostles and Elders having returned from

England, Joseph washed and anointed as Kings and Priests to God,

and over to House of Israel, the following named persons, as he

said he was commanded of God, viz: James Adams (of Spring-

field), William Law, William Marks, Willard Richards, Brigham

Young, Heber C. Kimball, Newel K. Whitney, Hyrum Smith, and

myself; conferred on us Patriarchal Priesthood. This took place

on the 5th and 6th of May, 1842.

24. History of the Church, Vol 5:2-3; 5 May 1842.

Thursday, 5.–General Adams started for Springfield, [p. 3]

and the remainder of the council of yesterday continued their

meeting at the same place, and myself and Brother Hyrum received

in turn from the others, the same that I had communicated to

them the day previous.

25. Manuscript History of Brigham Young, p. 116; 5 May 1842.

–5–I attended Council as yesterday, and we administered

to brother Joseph the same ordinances.

26. History of the Church, Vol 5:409; 26 May 1843.

Friday, 26.–At five p.m. I met in counsel in the upper

room, with my brother Hyrum, Brigham Young, Heber C. Kimball,

Willard Richards, Judge James Adams, Bishop Newel K. Whitney and

William Law, and gave them their endowments and also instructions in the priesthood on the new and everlasting covenant, &c. 

27. Manuscript History of Brigham Young; p. 129; 26 May 1843.

–26–Met with the Prophet Joseph, the Patriarch Hyrum,

brothers Kimball and Richards, Judge Adams, and Bishop N. K.

Whitney, receiving our endowments and instructions in the

Priesthood. The Prophet Joseph administered to us the first

ordinances of endowment, and gave us instructions on the

Priesthood and the new and everlasting covenant.

28. Joseph Smith “Diary”; Church Archives; 26 May 1843.

Friday May 26th 1843 5.P.M. . I and Hiram and Judge Adams &

Bishop Whitney B. Young, H.C. Kimball, W. Richards & Wm Law, in

council in upper room, receiving instructions on the priesthood,

the new and everlasting covenant, &c. adjourned to Sunday P.M.5.

29. Manuscript History of the Church, Book D1, p. 1561; c. 26

May 1843.

…and gave them their endowments and also instructions in

the Priesthood….

30. No reference in Brigham Young journal for 26 May 1843. 

Nothing in Willard Richard’s journal relevant.

31. History of the Church, Vol 5:412; Sunday, 28 May 1843.

Sunday, 28.–Cold, rainy day.

At five p.m. I met with brother Hyrum, Brigham Young, Heber

C. Kimball, Willard Richards, Newel K. Whitney, and James Adams,

in the upper room to attend to ordinances and counseling. 

Prayed that James Adams might be delivered from his enemies, and

that Orrin P. Rockwell might be delivered from prison, and that

the Twelve be prospered in collecting means to build the Nauvoo


32. Manuscript History of Brigham Young, p. 129; 28 May 1843.

–28 (Sunday)–I met with brothers Joseph, Hyrum, Heber,

Willard, Bishop Whitney and Judge Adams when we administered to

brother Joseph the same ordinances of Endowment, and of the holy

priesthood which he administered unto us.

33. Joseph Smith “Diary”; Church Archives, Ms/d/155/Bx1/fd6; 28

May 1843.

Sunday May 28. Clouds & rain.– cold. — 5 P.M. – adjourn-

ed council met in the upper Room. attend to ordinances and

councilled and prayed that James Adams might be delivered from

his enemies & O.P. Rockwell & the twelve be pospered [sic] in

collecting means to build the Nauvoo House Joseph– . & J.

Adams [shorthand]  &c adjourned to 9 o clock Monday morning.

34. Brigham Young Journal; 28 May 1843.

Sunday 28 at home and at Br Joseph Smith in councel with

Brs. J. Smith H Smith H.C. Kimball N.K. Whitney Judge Adams and

W. Richards.

35. Willard Richards Journal; 28-29 May 1843.

At Josephs — upper Room looking after Lawrence estate,-

–Quorum [of] 12. 29 [May 1843] O.447. Lawrence Estate * * *

36. History of the Church, Vol 5:412-3; 29 May 1843.

Monday, 29.**At nine a.m., I met in council with brother

Hyrum, Brigham Young, Heber C. Kimball, [p. 413] Willard

Richards, Newel K. Whitney, and James Adams.

Singing, and prayer by Elder Brigham Young. Conversation,

instruction and teaching concerning the things of God. Had a

pleasant interview.

37. Manuscript History of Brigham Young, p. 129; 29 May 1843.

–29–Met at 9 a.m. with the same brethren, when Joseph

instructed us further in principles pertaining to the holy


38. Joseph Smith “Diary”; Church Archives, Ms/d/155/Bx1/fd6; 29

May 1843.

Monday May 29th 1843  9 A.M. met pursuant to adjournment. Joseph Hyrum, Brigham, Willard, & Sis Thompson, [shorthand] &

Heber & Newel K. present also Joseph. & James Adams. singing &

prayer by Elder Brigham Young — Conversation & instruction &

teaching concerning the things of God, had a pleasant interview

39. There is no 29 May 1843 Brigham Young entry. He starts on

a mission to the East 5 July 1843.

40. Journal of William Clayton; Friday, 20 October 1843.

Friday 20th [October 1843]. At B.F. Johnsons . . . Evening

J[oseph]. gave us much instruction, showing the advantages of

the E[verlasting]. C[ovenant]. He said there was two seals in

the Priesthood. The first was that which was placed upon a man

and woman when they made the covenant [Celestial Marriage] & the

other was the seal which alloted to them their particular

mansion [Second Anointing]—After his discourse B.F. Johnson &

his wife were united in an everlasting covenant.

41. Statement by Bathsheba W. Smith; quoted in Temples of the

Most High, by N. B. Lundwall; 1952 edition, p. 286; c. end of

1843-beginning of 1844.

I was a resident of Nauvoo, State of Illinois, from 1840 to

1846, I was married to George A. Smith July 25, 1841, Elder Don

Carlos Smith performing the ceremony. Near the close of the

year 1843, or in the beginning of the year 1844, I received the

ordinance of anointing in a room in Sis. Emma Smith’s house in

Nauvoo, and the same day, in company with my husband, I received

my endowment in the upper room over the Prophet Joseph Smith’s

Store. The endowments were given under the direction of the

Prophet Joseph Smith, who afterwards gave us lectures or

instructions in regard to the endowment ceremonies. There has

been no change, to my certain knowledge, in these ceremonies. 

They are the same today as they were then. A short time after I

received my anointing, I was sealed to my husband, George A.

Smith for time and eternity, by Pres. Brigham Young, in the

latter’s house, according to the plan taught, to my knowledge,

by the Prophet Joseph Smith. When I was married in 1841, I was

married for time, and not for eternity.

42. Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, pp. 362-363; April 8,


The declaration this morning is, that as soon as the Temple

and baptismal font are prepared, we calculate to give the Elders

of Israel their washings and anointings, and attend to those

last and more impressive ordinances, without which we cannot

obtain celestial thrones. But there must be a holy place

prepared for that purpose. There was a proclamation made during

the time that the foundation of the Temple was laid to that

effect, and there are provisions made until the work is completed, so that men may receive their endowments and be made

kings and priests unto the Most High God, having nothing to do

with temporal things, but their whole time will be taken up with

things pertaining to the house of God. These [sic] must,

however, be a place built expressly for that purpose, and for

men to be baptized for their dead. It must be built in this

central place; for every man who wishes to save his father,

mother, brothers, sisters and friends, must go through all the

ordinances for each one of them separately, the same as for

himself, from baptism to ordination, washing and anointings and

receive all the keys and powers of the Priesthood, the same as

for himself.

43. Journal of Heber C. Kimball; May 1844.

In May 1844 my wife Vilate and many females were received

into the holy order and were washed and anointed by Emma.

44. George Laub Journal; BYU Special Collections; 31 December


At the dedication of the Seventies Hall in Nauvoo, 31

December 1844, Elder Heber C. Kimball urged the saints to

“preserve our president and his wife [viz. Brigham Young and

Mary Ann Young] for we must receive our Endumen [Endowments]

through them. But it must be done in order Every one at his

time as it comes through the channel begining [sic] at the head

& be patient and wait till the[ir] time and turn comes”

45. George A. Smith “Journal”; Church Historical Department;

Sunday, 26 January 1845.

Held Council in the evening. Elder John E. Page was


46. History of the Church, Vol 7:365; 26 January 1845.

Evening I attended prayer meeting.

47. Heber C. Kimball “Journal”; 26 January 1845.

January the 26. I preach / ed in the musick Hall in / the

Evning the Holly Preat / hood meet over Elder / Parley P Pratt

Store Elder / Page Received his admittan / ce in the holy order.

48. Brigham Young “Journal”; 26 January 1845.

Sunday 26 / I was sick in the morning went to the high

Priest corum they agread to finish the upper part of temple next

summer then I went to the temple store had a meeting in the high


49. Amasa M. Lyman “Journal”; 26 January 1845.

. . . in the evening meet in the Quorum.

50. Willard Richard’s “Journal”,26 January 1845, nothing


51. High Priests Quorum Mtg; Misc Minutes Collection; CHO,

Ms/d/4358/folder 8/1845; 26 January 1845.

[Brigham Young encouraging the High Priests not to go ahead

and build a hall but]: . . . go and finish off the upper story

of the Temple [then] you will have a place in which you can

receive your washings and anointings and endowments. . . .There

are certain branches of the endowment that must be done in an

upper room.

52. Perrigrine Sessions Diary; Church Archives; 3 February 1845. [Typed without sic.]

I would remark that on the eighteenth of January that my

brother in law Winsor P. Lyon and my cosen Enock B. Tripp were

baptized under the hand of brother Heber C. Kimball one of the

Twelve this give the connection a time of rejoicing to see them

Obey the truth on the twentieth after receiving my indewments in

the house of the Lord with Lucina my wife  I commenced work in

the Temple and I will here say that the Spirit of the Lord was

poured out upon those that were atending to the Ordinances of

the holy priesthood about this time a man by the name of Strang

came into the City and Clamed to bee the head and leader of the

chuch saying that he was called and Ordained by the Prophet

Joseph to that Office this made conciderable of a stir

53. Millennial Star, Vol 5:104; Orson Hyde; March 1845.

Before I went east on the 4th of April, we were in council

with Brother Joseph almost every day for weeks. Says Brother

Joseph, in one of those councils, “There is something going to

happen; I don’t know what it is, but the Lord bids me to hasten,

and give you your endowment before the temple is finished.” He

conducted us through every ordinance of the holy priesthood, and

when he had gone through with all the ordinances he rejoiced

very much, and says, “now if they kill me you have got all the

keys, and all the ordinances, and you can confer them upon

others, and the hosts of Satan will not be able to tear down the

kingdom as fast as you will be able to build it up; and now,”

says he, “on your shoulders will rest the responsibility of

leading this people, for the Lord is going to let me rest a

while.” Now why did he say to the Twelve “on your shoulders

will this responsibility rest,” why did he not mention Brother

Hyrum? The spirit knew that Hyrum would be taken with him, and

hence he did not mention his name; Elder Rigdon’s name was not

mentioned, although he was here all the time, but he did not

attend our councils.

54. Millennial Star, Vol. 5:109; Wilford Woodruff; March 1845.

Has the Prophet Joseph found Elder Rigdon in his councils,

when he organized the quorum of the Twelve a few months before

his death, to prepare them for the endowment? And when they

received their endowment, and actually received the keys of the

Kingdom of God, and oracles of God, keys of revelation, and the

pattern of heavenly things, and thus addressing the Twelve,

exclaimed: “Upon your shoulders the kingdom rests, and you must

round up your shoulders and bear it, for I have had to do it

until now. But now the responsibility rests upon you. It

mattereth not what becomes of me.” I say, has this been the

case with Elder Rigdon in any wise?

55. Millennial Star, Vol. 6:9-10, Appendix; P. P. Pratt, editor;

Written in New York; April 6, 1845.

The despised and degraded son of the forest, who has

wandered in dejection and sorrow, and suffered reproach, shall

then drop his disguise and stand forth in manly dignity, and

exclaim to the Gentiles who have envied and sold him—“I am

Joseph; does my father yet live?” or, in other words, I am a

descendant of that Joseph who was sold into Egypt. You have

hated me, and sold me, and thought I was dead; but lo! I live

and am heir to the inheritance, titles, honors, priesthood,

scepter, crown, throne, and eternal life and dignity of my

fathers, who live for evermore.

He shall then be ordained, washed, anointed with holy oil,

and arrayed in fine linen, even in the glorious and beautiful

garments and royal robes of the high priesthood, which is after

the order of the Son of God; and shall enter into the Holy of

Holies, there to be crowned with authority and power which shall

never end.

The spirit of the Lord shall then descend upon him like the

dew upon the mountains of Hermon, and like refreshing showers of

rain upon the flowers of Paradise.

His heart shall expand with knowledge, wide as eternity,

and his mind shall comprehend the vast creations of his God, and

his eternal purpose of redemption, glory, and exaltation, which

was devised in heaven before the worlds were organized; but made

manifest in these last days, for the fulness of the Gentiles,

and for the exaltation of Israel.

He shall also behold his Redeemer, and be filled with His

presence, while the cloud of His glory shall be seen in His


56. History of the Church, Vol. 7:417-418; Brigham Young

speaking; Saturday, May 24, 1845.

A large number of the saints assembled to witness the

laying of the capstone on the south-east corner of the Temple.

At six o’clock and eight minutes a.m. Brother Wm. Player

commenced spreading the mortar, perfect silence prevailing; the

stone being lifted to its place. I stepped on the same and

fitted it precisely to its position with the large beetle, at

twenty-two past six a.m. the capstone was pronounced set. . .

I said: The last stone is now laid upon the Temple and I

pray the Almighty in the name of Jesus to defend us in this

place and sustain us until the Temple is finished and we have

all got our endowments.

57. History of the Church, Vol 7:481; 9 October 1845.

There seems to be no disposition abroad but to massacre the

whole body of this people, and nothing but the power of God can

save us from the cruel ravages of the bloodthirsty mob.

We concluded to plead with our heavenly Father to preserve

his people, and the lives of his servants that the saints may

finish the Temple and receive their endowments.

58. Nothing in George A. Smith “Journal”; 9 October 1845. 

Nothing in the Willard Richards “Journal”; 9 October 1845.

59. Heber C. Kimball “Journal”; T. Bullock’s handwriting; 9

October 1845.

in the morning met for prayer / * * * in the evening the

usual company met for prayers the [next page] following things

were prayed for the prosperity of the Elders / in the United

States, & the brethren in the South Pacific / Islands & the

brethren in the West among the Red men of / the Forrest, that

our enemies may be frustrated in all their / designs, that

confusion and disorder, and treachery / might enter into their

ranks, that the sick of this people / might be healed, union

prevail, and that all of his / servants be saved from their

enemies & that they should / not have power serve their vexa-

tious writs, that the / Temple & Font may be finished and

dedicated & consecrated / to the most high God, that his

servants & handmaids may obtain their ordinances & sealing

powers of the Priesthood, / and the way opened for his saints to

go to the West &c

60. Nauvoo Temple [Historical Documents]; “Nov. 30, 1845 Meeting

of the Twelve and others. Dedication of Upper Room of Temple. 

Some Journalizing [by Apostle John Taylor].”; Church Archives;

CR/342/1/fd4; 30 November 1845. [Notation: ^<. . .> represents

inserted text.]

On Sunday the 30th. of November 1845 I met with the

brethren of ^<the> Quorum, not only of the Twelve but others who

had received an endowment during the life-time of Joseph Smith,

in the upper room of the Temple for the purpose of dedicating it

preparatory to receiving or giving the endowments. The large

Room for giving the endowments in is 100 one hundred ^<ninety>

feet long and eighty ^<28> feet wide–it was well fitted up and

carpeted all over. The brethren had sent in their carpets from

all part [sic] the day before. There were also twelve rooms six

on each side for that were well fitted up carpeted and furnished

for the purposes of the priesthood  those rooms were all of a

size & were fourteen feet by fourteen feet five inches. The

Room on the south East corner was the one occupied by President

Brigham Young-the next room next west Br. Heber C. Kimball &

President Young ^<together H. C. Kimball & Willard Richards. 

Willard Richards is Historian which necessarily throws him into

that position> the first one being intended partly for an

office  The third room from the East corner was occupied by

Orson Hyde & Parley P. Pratt the fourth by ^<John E. Page> John

Taylor &/ George A. Smith & Amasa Lyman-The fifth room by Joseph

Young the President of the whole seventies & his council. The

sixth room is for a preparation rooms to wash & annoint preparatory to the annointing. All of these rooms were on the south

side of the building. [p. 2]

The first room on the north east corner was appropriated to

Bishop Whitney & ^<Miller> his coun their Council being intended

for the bishopric. the second for the President of the Stake, &

the High Priesthood & their Quorum. A number of those were

present at the dedication who had heretofore received their

endowment. The fifth room was appropriated for the president of

the Elders & his Council. the sixth for a preparation Room 

The order of the rooms so far as the two east corners is

concerned is according to the order of the priesthood in

buildings & Temples. It is the order that the first ^<or south

East> corner stone ^<viz the south east> that be laid in a

Temple should be laid by the president of the ^<whole> Church if

present or (see revelation)—

The following persons were present

Brigham Young– Isaac Morley–

Heber C. Kimball– Alpheus Cutler–

Orson Hyde– Reynolds Cahoon–

Parley P. Pratt– W W Phelps–

Willard Richards– Wm Clayton–

John Taylor– Cornelius ^<P> Lot–

George A. Smith– Orson Spencer–

Amasa Lyman– Joseph Young–

Newel K. Whitney– Lucian Woodworth–

George Miller– Levi Richards–

John Smith– Joseph Kingsbury–

61. History of the Church, Vol. 7:537; Brigham Young; Tuesday,

December 2, 1845.

I spent the day in the Temple making preparations for the


Spent an hour in prayer.

62. History of the Church, Vol. 7:538; Brigham Young; Thursday,

December 4, 1845.

I was engaged with several of the Twelve fitting up the

Temple preparatory to administering the ordinances of endowment.

Evening, the council met for prayer in the Temple.

63. History of the Church, Vol. 7:538; Brigham Young; Monday,

December 8, 1845.

I have been actively engaged in the Temple since the

painters finished, fitting up the apartments and preparing the

rooms for administering endowments.

64. History of the Church, Vol. 7:539; Brigham Young; Wednesday,

December 10, 1845.

Nine a.m., I went to the Temple, weather fine, but cold.

I fitted up the curtains on the east windows, Brother Heber

C. Kimball and wife, Sisters Parley P. Pratt and N. K. Whitney

assisted me.

At 3:45 p.m., we completed the arrangements of the east

room, preparatory to giving endowments.

Four-twenty-five (4:25) p.m., Elder Heber C. Kimball and I

commenced administering the ordinances of endowment (Dec. 10,


Nine-thirty p.m., we assembled for prayers, Amasa Lyman was


We continued officiating in the Temple during the night

until three- thirty a.m. of the 11th.

The following were administered to:

Willard Richards;

Heber C. Kimball and his wife, Vilate;

George A. Smith and Bathsheba W.;

Orson Hyde and Nancy Marinda;

John Smith and Clarissa;

Newel K. Whitney and Elizabeth Ann;

Brigham Young and Mary Ann;

William W. Phelps and Sally;

Parley P. Pratt and Mary Ann;

Amasa Lyman and Mariah Louisa;

George Miller and Mary Catharine;

John Taylor and Leonora;

Lucien Woodworth and Phebe;

John E. Page and Mary;

Joseph C. Kingsbury;

Mary Smith, widow of Hyrum;

Agnes Smith, widow of Don Carlos.

65. History of the Church, Vol. 7:543; Brigham Young; Thursday,

December 11, 1845.

Elder Heber C. Kimball and I went to Joseph Kingsbury’s and

ate breakfast and returned to the Temple.

I officiated in the Temple with the brethren of the Twelve. We administered the ordinances of endowment to:

Isaac Morley and his wife, Lucy;

Orson Spencer and Catharine C.;

Joseph Young;

Alpheus Cutler and Lois;

Reynolds Cahoon and Thirza;

William Clayton and Ruth;

Cornelius Lott and Permelia;

Mother Lucy Smith and Mercy R. Thompson.

At eight a.m., we assembled for prayer, Elder John E. Page

was mouth.

66. History of the Church, Vol. 7:544; Brigham Young; Friday,

December 12, 1845.

In company with my brethren of the Twelve I officiated in

the Temple until midnight.

Orson Pratt and his wife, Sarah Marinda, the First Presidency of the Seventy and their wives and others numbering in all

twenty-eight males and twenty-seven females received the

ordinances of endowment.

67. History of the Church, Vol. 7:544-545; Brigham Young;

Saturday, December 13, 1845.

We continued officiating in the Temple; twenty-five males

and twenty females were administered unto.

I drafted rules for the preservation of order in the House

of the Lord.

68. History of the Church, Vol. 7:545; Brigham Young; Sunday,

December 14, 1845.

The Twelve and others with our wives met in the attic story

of the Temple.

After prayer and singing, Elders Isaac Morley and Charles

C. Rich administered, and we partook of the sacrament.

I introduced the subject of establishing rules for the

preservation of order in the House of the Lord which were agreed

to and ordered to be printed. * * *

There is too much covetousness in the church, and too much

disposition amongst the brethren to seek after power and has

been from the beginning, but this feeling is diminishing and the

brethren begin to know better. In consequence of such feelings

Joseph (Smith) left the people in the dark on many subjects of

importance and they still remain in the dark. We have got to

rid such principles from our hearts.

I referred to the manner in which the corner stones of this

Temple were laid as published in the Times and Seasons and said

that the perfect order would have been for the presidency of the

stake to lay the first or southeast corner; the high council the

second or southwest corner; the bishops the northeast corner;

but the high priests laid the southwest corner, though they had

no right to do it.

I spoke of the brethren making objections to persons being

permitted to receive the ordinances, and added, that when

objections were made I should feel bound to determine whether

the person making the objections was a responsible person, and

if he is not, I should do as I pleased about listening to the

objections; but if he was a responsible person I should listen

to them.

To constitute a man responsible he must have the power and

ability not only to save himself but to save others; but there

are those who are not capable of saving themselves and will have

to be saved by others.

When a man objects to another receiving the ordinances he

becomes responsible to answer to God for that man’s salvation;

and who can tell but if he received the ordinances he would be

saved, but if we refuse to give him the means he cannot be saved

and we are responsible for it.

There is no law to prevent any man from obtaining all the

blessings of the priesthood if he will walk according to the

commandments, pay his tithes and seek after salvation, but he

may deprive himself of them.

After much profitable instruction we united in prayer,

Orson Hyde being mouth.

Meeting adjourned for one week.

69. History of the Church, Vol. 7:547-548; Brigham Young; Monday

to Saturday, December 15-20, 1845.

Monday, 15—the ordinances of endowment were administered

to sixty- four brethren and sisters.

The Twelve and others officiated.

Tuesday, 16—Sixty-nine brethren and sisters received

their endowments.

Wednesday, 17—We continued our labors in the Temple,

administered the ordinances of endowment to sixty-nine brethren

and sisters.

Thursday, 18—Sixty-six persons were administered to in

the Temple.

In consequence of the great pressure of business during the

past week, it had been decided to devote Saturday to the purpose

of washing robes and garments used, but there being a general

desire in the minds of all those officiating in the ordinances

that the work should not cease; it was determined that the

clothes should be washed during the night.

Friday, 19—Ninety-eight persons received ordinances.

Saturday, 20—Ninety-five persons received their ordinances.

70. Harrison Burgess Journal; CHO; Ms/d/893; Monday, 22 Dec


Mon the 22 I was called upon by Pres Joseph Young to go to

the Temple and assist in the work of Endowment with a request

that I would help him clear through until the work was done;

which I did.

71. History of the Church, Vol. 7:549-555; Brigham Young; Monday

to Saturday, December 22-27, 1845.

Monday, 22,—I stayed in the Temple last night and early

this morning gave direction for the arrangements of the day,

assisted by George Miller [Footnote: Brother Miller was

president of the high priests.] as the day was set apart more

especially for the high priests.

One hundred and six persons received ordinances.

Tuesday, 23,—Eighty-seven persons received the ordinances.

Wednesday, 24—All the Twelve have been absent from the

Temple the greater part of this day except Orson Pratt. One

hundred twenty-two persons received the ordinances.

At 11:20, Elder Heber C. Kimball and I returned to the

Temple and remained all night.

Thursday, 25—Six p.m., the high council met for prayer in

room No. 4; the high priests met in room No. 8.

One hundred seven persons received their ordinances. The

business of the day closed at twenty minutes past ten o’clock,

and notice was given that no more washings and anointings would

be attended to at present. Brother Kimball and I, with some few

others, remained in the Temple all night.

Friday, 26—Elders Heber C. Kimball, Orson Pratt and I

were present in the Temple this morning and a few of those who

had been officiating: I called them together in the east room

about 11:30 a.m., and told them there would be no business done

today and that they were all dismissed except the two Brothers

Hanson, and three brethren for officers.

I said we shall have no more anointing at present, and if

the brethren do not get anything more than they have already

received, they have got all they have worked for in building

this house; and if there is any more to be received it is

because the Lord is merciful and gracious.

The high council and high priests will meet together once a

day as usual for prayer.

Two hundred sixty-eight high priests were reported to have

received their endowments.

I further remarked, that when we begin again we should pay

no respect to quorums. Every man that comes in, is washed and

anointed by good men and it makes no difference. Every man that

gets his endowments, whether he is a high priest or seventy may

go into any part of the world and build up the kingdom if he has

the keys. We have been ordained to the Melchizedek priesthood

which is the highest order of the priesthood, and it has many

branches or appendages.

I said, my feelings were to rest a few days and let the

Temple rest, and when we commenced work again I would make a

selection of hands who will remain and officiate daily. No

persons will be allowed to come in unless they are invited, and

I shall feel insulted if they remain here. I felt it impressed

upon me to rest a few days and make these regulations, and as

our oil is done we cannot do much anyway.

Saturday, 27—Orson Pratt was the only one of the Twelve

present in the temple.

72. History of the Church, Vol. 7:564-567; Brigham Young; Monday

to Saturday, 5-10 January, 1846.

Monday, 5—8:45 a.m., commenced washing and anointing

(i.e. in the Temple). Seventeen bottles of oil were consecrated.

One hundred four persons received their endowments.

Tuesday, 6—Seventeen bottles of oil were consecrated. 

Ninety persons received ordinances.

Wednesday, 7—This morning there was an immense crowd at

the reception room waiting for admission.

One hundred twenty-one persons received ordinances.

This afternoon, the new altar was used for the first time,

and four individuals and their wives were sealed. The altar is

about two and one- half feet high and two and one-half feet long

and about one foot wide, rising from a platform about 8 or 9

inches high and extending out on all sides about a foot, forming

a convenient place to kneel upon. The top of the altar and the

platform for kneeling upon are covered with cushions of scarlet

damask cloth; the sides of the upright part or body of the altar

are covered with white linen.

The Twelve and presiding bishops with their wives were

present at the dedication of the altar this afternoon.

Thursday, 8—Eighty-one persons received ordinances.

Friday, 9—One hundred and five persons received ordinances in the Temple. I attended to ordinances at the altar.

Saturday, 10—One hundred and eighteen received ordinances.

73. Journal of John Spiers; CHO; Ms/d/1725; 12 January 1846.

On the 12th of January 1846 I received the first degree of

my endowment under the hand of the Presidency of the Seventies,

was washed anointed with oil ordained to be a King and Priest

unto God, in his own due time and introduced through the signs

and orders of the Priesthood.

74. History of the Church, Vol. 7:567-569; Brigham Young; Monday

to Saturday, 12-17 January 1846.

Monday, 12—One hundred and forty-three persons received

their endowments in the Temple. I officiated at the altar. 

Such has been the anxiety manifested by the saints to receive

the ordinances of the Temple, and such the anxiety on our part

to administer to them, that I have given myself up entirely to

the work of the Lord in the Temple night and day, not taking

more than four hours sleep, upon an average, per day, and going

home but once a week.

Tuesday, 13—A council was held in the Temple. The

captains of fifties and tens made reports of the number in their

respective companies, who were prepared to start west immediately, should the persecutions of our enemies compel us to do so.

Friday, 16—A company of about forty saints including a

portion of Elder Woodruff’s family, consisting of his wife,

Phebe, and two children, left Liverpool. . . for New Orleans.

Saturday, 17—Thirty-six persons received ordinances in

the Temple.

75. History of the Church, Vol. 7:570-576; Brigham Young; Monday

to Saturday, 19-24 January 1846.

Monday, 19—I administered at the altar all day with the

exception of thirty minutes in which I took some refreshments.

Tuesday, 20—One hundred and ninety-five persons received

ordinances in the Temple.

Public prejudice being so strong against us, and the

excitement becoming alarming we determined to continue the

administration of the ordinances of endowment night and day.

Wednesday, 21—Two hundred and eight persons received


Thursday, 22—One hundred and ninety-eight persons

received ordinances in the Temple.

Friday, 23—One hundred and twenty-eight persons received

ordinances in the Temple.

Saturday, 24—One hundred and fifty-one persons received

ordinances in the Temple. I attended a general meeting of the

official members of the church held in the second story of the

Temple, for the purpose of arranging the business affairs of the

church prior to our exit from this place.

We intend to finish the Temple and the Nauvoo House, as far

as putting on the roof and putting in the windows are concerned.

76. History of the Church, Vol. 7:576-578; Brigham Young; Sunday

to Saturday, 25-31 January 1846.

Sunday, 25—I attended to ordinances in the Temple.

Monday, 26—Nine a.m., I went to the Temple and commenced

the ordinances in the different departments which were set apart

for the purpose; the washing and anointing was suspended until


Tuesday, 27—One hundred and twenty-six persons received


Elders Heber C. Kimball, Orson Hyde, Parley P. Pratt, Orson

Pratt, Amasa Lyman, and I officiated in the higher ordinances.

I officiated at the altar until 10 p.m. and remained in the

Temple all night.

Wednesday, 28—One hundred and seventy-two persons

received ordinance in the Temple.

Thursday, 29—I continued giving endowments in the Temple

in connection with my brethren of the Twelve and others. One

hundred and thirty- three persons received ordinances.

Friday, 30—One hundred and seventy-two persons received

the ordinances of endowment.

Nine a.m., the (wind) vane was put upon the tower of the


Saturday, 31—Two hundred and thirty-three persons received ordinances.

77. History of the Church, Vol. 7:578-581; Brigham Young; Sunday

to Saturday, 1-7 February 1846.

Sunday, 1—Public meeting in the second story of the


Monday, 2—Two hundred and thirty-four persons received


Ten a.m., the Twelve, Trustees and a few others met in

council, to ascertain the feelings of the brethren that were

expecting to start westward. We agreed that it was imperatively

necessary to start as soon as possible.

. . . after returning to the office made inquiries of the

Lord as to our circumstances and the circumstances of the saints

and received satisfactory answers. Retired about 1 a.m.

Tuesday, 3—Notwithstanding that I had announced that we

would not attend to the administration of the ordinances, the

House of the Lord was thronged all day, the anxiety being so

great to receive, as if the brethren would have us stay here and

continue the endowments until our way would be hedged up, and

our enemies would intercept us. But I informed the Brethren

that this was not wise, and that we should build more Temples,

and have further opportunities to receive the blessings of the

Lord, as soon as the saints were prepared to receive them. 

Looking upon the multitude and knowing their anxiety, as they

were thirsting and hungering for the word, we continued at work

diligently in the House of the Lord.

Two hundred and ninety-five persons received ordinances.

Wednesday, 4—I continued loading up my wagons, preparatory to starting west.

Friday, 6—Five hundred and twelve persons received the

first ordinances of endowment in the Temple.

Saturday, 7—According to G. A. Smith’s Journal upwards of

six hundred received the ordinances (i.e. of the Temple): One

hundred and twenty-six of which were reported in the Seventies


78. Manuscript History of Brigham Young; Book 4, Ms p. 107;

Brigham Young speaking; July 21, 1849.

Addison Pratt received his endowments on Ensign Hill on the

21st, the place being consecrated for the purpose. Myself and

Elders Isaac Morley, P. P. Pratt, L. Snow, E. Snow, D. D. Rich,

F. D. Richards, Levi W. Hancock, Henry Harriman, and J. M. Grant

being present. Pres. H. C. Kimball, Bp. N. K. Whitney and Elder

John Taylor came after the ordinances were attended to. Elder

C. C. Rich, and P. Pratt were blessed by all, Pres. Kimball

being mouth.

79. Hosea Stout “Journal”; BYU Special Collections; 26 February


* * * In the Evening met several brethren in a prayer

meeting at the upper room in Council House. The endowment is

commenced there & this was a meeting after the order of the


80. Journal of Discourses, Vol. 3:269; Heber C. Kimball; Salt

Lake City; March 23, 1852; as quoted in Temples of the Most

High, “When Endowments Prove a Curse”, p. 387-388.

The most of those present have received their endowments,

their washings and anointings and have made covenants to their

God and their brethren, before witness, that they would be

faithful, that they would be true, that they would listen to all

the counsels of the Lord’s servants, and cease to do evil. All

who have done this have been pronounced clean, and will they

then go and pollute themselves with the wicked? I am sorry to

say that a few are unwise enough to do so.

Both men and women have also covenanted that they will have

no unlawful intercourse with each other. After all this, do any

of you make a practice of speaking evil one of another, of

cheating one another, of lying and deceiving? Yes, some who are

under the covenants just named actually indulge in those evil

practices, and I say to all such that if they do not repent of

their follies and sins, their washings and anointings will prove

a curse instead of a blessing, and will expedite their condemnation.

If a man sins to that degree that he is cut off from the

Church, he forfeits the blessings promised on condition of

keeping his covenants. When a man loses his membership in this

Church, he also loses his Priesthood, and of course the blessings of his endowments. Do not flatter yourself that you can

retain the blessings of the Gospel, and at the same time pursue

a wicked course, for you cannot do it.

81. Journal History; November 8, 1852.

Monday, Nov 8. The day was dull in G. S. L. City. Pres.

Heber C. Kimball, Willard Richards, Thos. Bullock, Wm. C.

Staines, James Ure, James W. Cummings, Samuel L. Sprague, Wm. W.

Phelps, each with a wife met in the Temple room. The brethren

annointed each other. The wives were annointed by Sister

Whitney and Snow; afterwards all partook of cakes and wine. 

Some spoke in tongues, etc.

82. Journal of Discourses, Vol. 2:31-32; President Brigham

Young; Delivered on the South-East Corner Stone of the Temple at

Great Salt Lake City, after the First Presidency and the

Patriarch had laid the Stone; April 6, 1853.

And those first Elders who helped to build it [the Kirtland

Temple], received a portion of their first endowments, or we

might say more clearly, some of the first, or introductory, or

initiatory ordinances, preparatory to an endowment.

The preparatory ordinances there administered, though

accompanied by the ministration of angels, and the presence of

the Lord Jesus, were but a faint similitude of the ordinances of

the House of the Lord in their fulness; yet many, through the

instigation of the devil, thought they had received all, and

knew as much as God; they have apostatized, and gone to hell. 

But be assured, brethren, there are but few, very few of the

Elders of Israel, now on earth, who know the meaning of the word

endowment. To know, they must experience; and to experience, a

Temple must be built.

Let me give you the definition in brief. Your endowment

is, to receive all those ordinances in the House of the Lord,

which are necessary for you, after you have departed this life,

to enable you to walk back to the presence of the Father,

passing the angels who stand as sentinels, being enabled to give

them the key words, the signs and tokens, pertaining to the Holy

Priesthood, and gain your eternal exaltation in spite of earth

and hell.

Who has received and understands such an endowment, in this

assembly? You need not answer. Your voices would be few and

far between, yet the keys to these endowments are among you, and

thousands have received them, so that the devil, with all his

aids, need not suppose he can again destroy the Holy Priesthood

from the earth, by killing a few, for he cannot do it. God has

set his hand, for the last time, to redeem His people, the

honest in heart, and Lucifer cannot hinder him.

Before these endowments could be given at Kirtland, the

Saints had to flee before mobocracy. . . .

At Nauvoo, Joseph dedicated another Temple, the third on

record [the other two being Kirtland and Far West]. He knew

what was wanting, for he had previously given most of the

prominent individuals then before him their endowment. He

needed no revelation, then, of a thing he had long experienced,

any more than those now do, who have experienced the same

things. It is only where experience fails, that revelation is


But what of the Temple in Nauvoo? . . . many received a

small portion of their endowment, but we know of no one who

received it in its fulness.

83. Journal of Wilford Woodruff; September 17, 1854.

President Young preached this afternoon & spoke upon the

Law of Consecration & had an interesting conversation in our

Prayer Circle. The subject of Elder Orson Pratt publishing The

Seer & the doctrine it contained was brought up in conversation. President Young said he ought not to have published the marriage

ceremony. It was sacred & one of the last ceremonies attended

to in the Endowments & ought not to have been given to the


84. Remarks by President H. C. Kimball; CHO, Ms/d/627/Box 3;

Tabernacle; Sunday Morning, Feb. 4, 1855.

If [I] want to court a man’s daughter it is my duty first

to ask the father’s consent, when I get his permission I have to

come and court her.

Well I will make a few remarks to the brethren in the

priesthood upon the subject. For there is no greater responsibility than those out of the kingdom, they have to get the

consent of parents and the woman, but have first to get leave

from the man who holds the keys of the priesthood then of the

father and mother before you can take a young woman to wife. If

a woman comes to you and makes a proposal, say I have no

authority to accept of your proposition but I will go and ask

the person who hol[d]s the keys first and then I can tell you

what I will do. And when a woman in this Church marries a man

out of it, a woman that has received her endowments she violates

her covenant. Do you know that? I want to to [sic] tell you of

it. Although I had no idea of speaking upon these subjects but

I am very glad that I have, are not you? (Congregation respond-

ed yes.)

85. Journal of Discourses 2:315; Brigham Young; the Tabernacle,

Great Salt Lake City; July 8, 1855. [Compare with D&C 129.]

Then go on and build the Temples of the Lord, that you may

receive the endowments in store for you, and possess the keys of

the eternal Priesthood, that you may receive every word, sign,

and token, and be made acquainted with the laws of angels, and

of the kingdom of our Father and our God, and know how to pass

from one degree to another, and enter fully into the joy of your


86. Journal of Discourses 3:332; Brigham Young; the Bowery,

Great Salt Lake City; June 8, 1856. [See also Ezra 10:19;

Genesis 48:13-14; Isaiah 41:10, 13; Acts 7:55-56; Romans 8:34;

Heb. 1:1-3.]

A great many of you have had your endowments, and you know

what a vote with uplifted hands means. It is a sign which you

make in token of your covenant with God and with one another,

and it is for you to perform your vows. When you raise your

hands to heaven and let them fall and then pass on with your

covenants unfulfilled, you will be cursed. 

87. Wilford Woodruff “Journal”; Church Archives; 2 October 1856.

I met with Presidents B. Young, H. C. Kimball & J. M. Grant

at the House of the Lord at 6 O’clock P.M. for the purpose of

Dedicating the Baptismal Font which has of Late been built on

the east side of the House of the Lord there was also present

besides the Presidency W Woodruff E Hunter Joseph Young D. H.

Wells A Carrington L. W. Hardy J. C. Little & Gilbert Clements.

We went to the Font & knelt down around it & dedicated it

unto God President B. Young called upon President Heber C

Kimball to be mouth in the dedication Prayer. . . After the Font

was dedicated President Brigham Young went down into the Font &

Baptized Presidents Heber C. Kimball & J. M. Grant & he laid his

hands upon them & confirmed them members in the Church of Jesus

Christ of Latter Day Saints & blessed them in the name of the

Lord  He blessed Heber C. Kimball & Heber C. Kimball was mouth

in blessing J. M. Grant

President Young said unto Heber C. KImball Brother Heber

Chase In the name of Jesus Christ I lay my hands upon your head

and I confirm you to be a member in the Church of Jesus Christ

of Latter Day Saints & I seal upon you the gift of the Holy

Ghost & Eternal life and I ordain & seal upon your head to be a

prophet, Seer & Revelator in the Church & Kingdom of God on the

Earth that was ever sealed upon the head of any man & I seal

these blessings upon you in the name of Jesus Christ Amen. . . 

President Brigham Young then Baptized me & all the Presidency

laid hands upon me & J. M Grant was mouth in confirming me &

said. . . President B. Young then baptized Bishop Edward Hunter

& confirmed him he was mouth & said. . .

President Young then baptized the following persons, Joseph

Young D. H. Wells, A. Carrington L. W. Hardy, J. C. Little &

Gilbert Clements & was mouth in confirming them all except D. H.

Wells. H. C. Kimball spoke upon his head. this made 10 persons

which President Brigham Young Baptized & confirmed.

Heber C. Kimball then baptized President Brigham Young &

confirmed him & said (J. M. grant also laid on hands) Brother

Brigham Young we lay our hands upon your head & Confirm you to

be a member in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints &

we seal upon your head the Holy Priesthood with all the Keys

powers & blessings appertaining thereunto even to be a prophet

seer & revelator in the Church & Kingdom of God & over the House

of Israel & we seal upon your head all the blessings all the

blessing which were sealed upon you by the Prophet Joseph & we

say unto you that you shall have power over your enemies & you

shall not be slain by them but you shall live to see them

overthrown & to see the Saints come off victorious over there

enemies & I seal these blessing upon you in the name of Jesus

Christ  Amen. . .

88. Journal of Discourses, Vol 4:149; Wilford Woodruff; Salt

Lake City; December 21, 1856; as quoted in Temples of the Most

High, “Those Who Slew the Prophet Joseph Had Their Endowments”;

p. 389.

I remember what Joseph said a short time before he was

slain in one of the last sermons I ever heard him preach. Said

he: “Men are here today who are seeking my blood, and they are

those who have held the Priesthood and have received their

washings and anointings; men who have received their endowments.” I saw the faces of those men at that time, and they had

a hand in slaying the Prophet. There are men who now possess

the same spirit and the same desire.

89. Journal of Discourses, Vol 4:192-3; Wilford Woodruff; Salt

Lake City; January 25, 1857; as quoted in Temples of the Most

High, “God Received His Endowments Millions of Years Ago”; p.


Some of the people have looked upon the law of tithing as a

kind of tax and burden laid upon them, but who is it for? Our

tithing, our labor, and all that we do in the Kingdom of God,

who is it all for? The tithing is not to exalt the Lord, or to

feed or clothe Him. He has had His endowments long ago; it is

thousands and millions of years since He received His blessings,

and if He had not received them, we could not give them to Him,

for He is far in advance of us. I want the brethren to under-

stand this one thing, that our tithing, our labor, our works are

not for the exaltation of the Almighty, but they are for us. 

90. Journal of Discourses, Vol 4:231-2; Wilford Woodruff; Salt

Lake City; February 22, 1857; as quoted in Temples of the Most

High, “Ten Tribes to Receive Endowments Through Those Present”;

p. 389-390.

Again, here are the ten tribes of Israel. We know nothing

about them only what the Lord has said by His Prophets. There

are Prophets among them, and by and by they will come along, and

they will smite the rocks, and the mountains of ice will flow

down at their presence, and a highway will be cast up before

them, and they will come to Zion, receive their endowments, and

be crowned under the hands of the children of Ephraim, and there

are persons before me in this assembly today who will assist to

give them their endowments. They will receive their blessings

and endowments, from under the children of Ephraim, who are the

first fruits of the Kingdom of God in this dispensation, and the

men will have to be ordained and receive their Priesthood and

endowments in the land of Zion, according to the revelations of


91. Journal of Wilford Woodruff; Church Historical Department;

Ms/f/115; June 14, 1857. Typed as in original.

I attended the prayer circle  The presidency & W.W. G.A.S.

A Lyman & C C Rich of the Twelve were present  there was much

conversation upon various subjects  President Young said I

shall not seal the people as I have done  Old Father Allred

brough[t] three young girls 12 & 13 years old I would not seal

them to them him  They would not be equally yoked together. 

The devil can get as many recommends as he can back  many get

their endowments who are not worthy to & this is the way devils

are made  there will be some needed in the next world. J.C.

Little & L.W. Hardy was sent out to obtain cattle to help pay a

Church Debt in a few days they returned  Little from the North

& Hardy from the South there was cattle gotten so the presidency

paid fifteen thousand Dollars debts with them  The subject of

Wm Smith was brought up  it was said that Joseph Smith Prophes-

ied that he would become a good man when he became an old man 

The brethren thought that he said if he ever did become good it

would be when he was an old man  President Young then said

“whether Joseph said it or not I will say in the name of the

Lord that if Wm Smith lives until He is 65 or 70 years old He

will become a good humble man  he will do the best he can  he

will have to answer for his sins”  write this Brother Woodruff

& put in into the Church History” When a man give[s] way to the

power of the Devil he finds it hard to recover himself again.

92. Journal of Discourses, Vol 4:372-3; Brigham Young; Salt Lake

City; June 28, 1857; as quoted in Temples of the Most High,

“Giving Endowments to Some Proves Their Overthrow”; p. 388-389.

Giving endowments to a great many proves their overthrow

through revealing things to them which they cannot keep. They

are not worthy to receive them. Brother Heber takes the lead in

giving endowments, and you may ask, “Why do you give such folks

their endowments?” To qualify them to be devils, if they wish

to be. The plan of salvation is calculated to make devils as

well as Saints; for by and by we shall need some to serve as

devils; and it takes almost as much knowledge to make a complete

devil as it does to fit a man to go into the celestial kingdom

of God, and become an heir to His kingdom. We want to complete

the education of a number of such fellows; they are running to

the States, to California, and elsewhere, and are trying to

reveal this, that, and the other; but I defy any one of them to

give any idea of what is taught them in their endowments, except

a garbled mass of trash. God takes that knowledge from their


93. Journal of Wilford Woodruff; Brigham Young speaking; August,


Many get their endowments who are not worthy to, & this is

the way devils are made. There will be some needed in the next


94. Journal of Discourses 6:63; Heber C. Kimball; the Tabernacle, Great Salt Lake City; Sunday morning, November 22, 1857.

I do not believe that we can emerge right into the presence

of God, although we may see him, not in the flesh, but we can in

the Spirit, if He touches the eyes of our understanding; but we

cannot see him with these bodies of flesh. Joseph always told

us that we would have to pass by sentinels that are placed

between us and our Father and God. Then, of course, we are

conducted along from this probation to other probations, or from

one dispensation to another, by those who conducted those


95. Journal of Wilford Woodruff; November 26, 1857.

In company with G A Smith I called upon President Brigham

Young and asked counsel about publishing the endowments or an

outline of it telling the time when the Twelve received their 2d

Anointing and about the organization of the Council of 50. He

gave his consent for us to publish an account of it so that the

Saints might understand it.

96. Journal of Discourses 6:154-155; Orson Hyde; the Tabernacle,

Great Salt Lake City; January 3, 1858. [Note the reference to

the apostolic right to forgive sins, as mentioned in John


Well, brethren and sisters, let it be our happy lot and our

ambition so to live before our God and our superiors that have

gone before us, that they may take pleasure in saying to us. 

`Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful

over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things.’ I

tell you, Joseph holds the keys, and none of us can get into the

celestial kingdom without passing by him. We have not got rid

of him, but he stands there as the sentinel, holding the keys of

the kingdom of God; and there are many of them beside him. I

tell you, if we get past those who have mingled with us, and

know us best, and have a right to know us best, probably we can

pass all other sentinels as far as it is necessary, or as far as

we may desire. But I tell you, the pinch will be with those

that have mingled with us, stood next to us, weighed our

spirits, tried us, and proven us: there will be a pinch, in my

view, to get past them. The others, perhaps, will say, If

brother Joseph is satisfied with you, you may pass. If it is

all right with him, it is all right with me. 

97. Journal History; Mss History of B. Young, p. 1085; Heber C.

Kimball speaking; November 13, 1858.

We do not expect that for several days to come all the

Saints will be Masons, but the principle is for every man to

hold each other sacred, it is so with many of us, but it should

be the case with us all, especially towards our President. The

endowments are necessary to place men under obligations to God. 

The covenants you make in the house of the Lord were made with

the Father, Son and the Holy Ghost, hence do you not see that we

are only witnesses in all the endowments. I merely speak of

this to remind you of your sacred obligations. We have the true

Masonry. The Mason of the day is received from the apostasy

which took place in the days of Solomon and David. They know

now and then a thing that is correct but we know the real thing

but how many comprehend it and see the propriety of being true

to each other.

98. Journal of Discourses 10:172; Brigham Young; the Tabernacle, Great Salt Lake City; May 24, 1863.

Those who are counted worthy to dwell with the Father and

the Son have previously received an education fitting for that

society; they have been made fully acquainted with every

password, token and sign which has enabled them to pass by the

porters through the doors into the celestial kingdom. 

99. Journal of Discourses, Vol 10:240-41; Heber C. Kimball; the

Bowery, Great Salt Lake City; July 19, 1863; as quoted in

Temples of the Most High, “Jesus Gave His Disciples Their

Endowments”; p. 386-387.

Let the Saints reflect upon these matters which I am laying

before them. Think of your holy endowments and what you have

been anointed to become, and reflect upon the blessings which

have been placed upon you for they are the same in part that

were placed upon Jesus; he was the one that inducted his

Apostles into these ordinances; it was he who set up the kingdom

of which we are subjects. This is the kingdom of which all the

Prophets spake, and to which Daniel alluded when he said: “And

in the days of these kings shall the God of Heaven set up a

kingdom, which shall never be destroyed; and the kingdom shall

not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and

consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever.” It is

a blessing to have the privilege of entering into the Kingdom of

God and partaking of the privileges and blessings that are be-

stowed upon its members.

100. Brigham Young Letter; February 17, 1864.

There is no sealing done outside the endowment house in

this city.

101. Journal of Discourses, Vol 10:309; also Discourses of

Brigham Young, p. 396; June 11, 1864.

Most of you, my brethren, are Elders, Seventies, or High

Priests; perhaps there is not a Priest or Teacher present. The

reason of this is that when we give the brethren their endowments, we are obliged to confer upon them the Melchizedek

Priesthood; but I expect to see the day, when we shall be so

situated that we can say to a company of brethren, You can go

and receive the ordinances pertaining to the Aaronic order of

Priesthood, and then you can go into the world and preach the

Gospel, or do something that will prove whether you will honor

that Priesthood before you receive more. Now we pass them

through the ordinances of both Priesthoods in one day, but this

is not as it should be and would, if we had a temple wherein to

administer these ordinances. But this is all right at present;

we should not be satisfied in any other way, and consequently we

do according to the circumstances we are placed in.

102. Journal of Wilford Woodruff; Brigham Young speaking; July

13, 1865.

Get your endowments before you get married so that your

sons may be heirs to the priesthood – “a right to the priesthood

and heirship.”

103. Journal of Wilford Woodruff; December 26, 1866.

President Young said that when persons came to get their

endowments should be clean and pure. A man should not touch a

woman for 10 days before getting their endowments and the Twelve

while travelling should hold meetings with the male members at

priesthood meetings & teach these, but they have to be handled

in wisdom or evil will grow out of it.

104. Journal History; January 31, 1868; also History of Brigham

Young 1868:131.

The school of the prophets met in the 14th Ward School

House. Pres. Brigham Young, Heber C. Kimball and Daniel H.

Wells and the Twelve Apostles and others were present. Pres.

Brigham Young and counselors spoke; also Hiram B. Clawson, Bp.

Edwin D. Woolley, Daniel Evans and Erastus Snow. Prests.

Young, Kimball and Wells spoke on the impropriety of the youth

of Zion marrying instead of getting sealed. He also spoke of

cleanliness of person, before going to get their endowments; a

woman should not go for a week after her menses were upon her, a

man should not have intercourse with his wife for several days,

but should be clean in body and exercised in spirit previous

thereto; his clothing should be changed once or twice before

going there.

105. Journal of Discourses 12:163; Brigham Young; the Old

Tabernacle, Salt Lake City; February 16, 1868.

It is absolutely necessary that the Saints should receive

the further ordinances of the house of God before this short

existence shall come to a close, that they may be prepared and

fully able to pass all the sentinels leading into the celestial

kingdom and into the presence.

106. Journal of Discourses, Vol 16:186-187; President Brigham

Young; Franklin, Cache County; Thursday evening, September 4,


There are many of the ordinances of the house of God that

must be performed in a Temple that is erected expressly for the

purpose. There are other ordinances that we can administer

without a Temple. You know that there are some which you have

received–baptism, the laying on of hands, the gifts of the Holy

Ghost, such as the speaking in and interpretation of tongues,

prophesying, healing, discerning of spirits, etc., and many

blessings bestowed upon the people, we have the privilege of

receiving without a Temple. There are other blessings that will

not be received, and ordinances that will not be performed

according to the law that the Lord has revealed, without their

being done in a Temple prepared for that purpose. We can, at

the present time, go into the Endowment House and be baptized

for the dead, receive our washings and anointing, etc., for

there we have a font that has been erected dedicated expressly

for baptizing people for the remission of sins, for their health

and for their dead friends; in this the Saints have the privilege of being baptized for their friends. We also have the

privilege of sealing women to men, without a Temple. This we

can do in the Endowment House; but when we come to other sealing

ordinances, ordinances pertaining to the holy Priesthood, to

connect the chain of the Priesthood from father Adam until now,

by sealing children to their parents, being sealed for our

forefathers, etc., they cannot be done without a Temple. But we

can seal women to men, but not men to men, without a Temple. 

When the ordinances are carried out in the Temples that will be

erected, men will be sealed to their fathers, and those who have

slept clear up to father Adam. This will have to be done,

because of the chain of the Priesthood being broken upon the

earth. The Priesthood has left the people, but in the first

place the people left the Priesthood.

107. Jans Christian Anderson Weibye Daybooks; CHO; Daybook #3,

pp. 159-160; December 31, 1874. J. C. A. Weibye born Sept 26,

1824; died Feb 28, 1893. [Typed as in the original without use

of sic.]

Copy of a Letter from J. F. Steck in St. George to James

Wareham here in Manti.

St.George Dec. 31st 1874.

Pr. G.A. Smith had asked Brother Brigham Young, why he was

in such a hurry to see the Temple in St. George completed. Prs.

B. Young answered, “What will you do if I die before the Temple

is completed, the candle is nearly burnt out, and can not last

much longer; therefore I want to see this Temple completed

before I die, that I can give the Keys to others.”

Last Sunday George A. Smith was preaching about the

persecutions that the Church had undergone in the past, and he

said “if the Gentiles oppress us much more, & drive us from

here, we will send 10 or 15,000 Elders through the States [p.

160] and we will take the Government from them whether they like

it or not, So help me God.” a loud and deep Amen! arose from

the assembled congregation.

108. “Journal of Henry W. Bigler”; Utah Historical Quarterly,

Vol 4:143; October 30, 1876.

October 30th. 1876. Endowments ceased in the Endowment

House. President Young said, “If the people wish to receive

their endowments and sealings they must go to Saint George and

receive them in a Temple.”

109. “St. George Temple. Account of Building and Dedication

1873-1877″; Church Archives; Restricted Document; CR/343/19/Vol

1(?); 27608 (vault); January 1, 1877.

Remarks by President Brigham Young At the Temple, St.

George, January 1, 1877.

“I cannot consent in my feelings to retire from this house

without exercising my strength, the strength of my lungs,

stomach and speaking organs, in speaking to this people. I

hardly dare say what is in my heart to say to this people. 

Perhaps it would not be prudent, but I will say a few encouraging things to the Latter Day Saints, that is they ought to be

encouraging. We that are here are enjoying a privilege that we

have no knowledge of any other people enjoying since the days of

Adam. that is, to have a Temple completed, wherein all the

ordinances of the House of God, can be bestowed upon His people. Brethren and Sisters, do you understand this!  it seems that a

great many of the people knew nothing about it. It is true that

Solomon built a Temple for the purpose of giving Endowments, but

from what we can learn of the history of that time, they gave

very few, if any Endowments, and one of the High Priests was

murdered by wicked and corrupt men, who had already begun to

Apostatize, because he would not reveal those things Appertain-

ing to the Priesthood, that were forbidden him to reveal until

he came to the proper place. I will not say, but what Enoch had

Temples and officiated therein, but we have no account of it. 

We knew that he raised up a people so pure and holy that they

were not permitted to remain with the wicked inhabitants of the

earth, but were taken to another place. We as Latter Day Saints

have been laboring for over forty years, and the revelations

given us in the first, were to establish the Kingdom, by

gathering the Saints, building Temples, and organizing the

people as the family of heaven here on the earth, We reared up

a Temple in Kirtland, but we had no basement in it, nor a font,

nor preparation to give Endowments for the living or the dead. 

It was left by the saints before it was completed. they going

to Missouri; Joseph located the site for the Temple Block, in

Jackson County Missouri, and pointed out the southeast corner of

the Temple in the year 1831. also laid the corner stone for a

Temple in Far West, Caldwell County, Missouri. These Temples

were not built. We built one in Nauvoo, I could pick out

several before me now, that were there when it was built, and

knew just how much was finished and what was done. It is true

we left brethren there with instructions to finish it, and they

got it nearly completed before it was burned, but the Saints did

not enjoy it. Now we have a Temple which will be finished in a

few days, and of which there is enough completed to commence

work therein, which has not been done since the days of Adam,

that we have any knowledge of. Now those that can see the

Spiritual Atmosphere, can see that many of the Saints are still

glued to this earth, and lusting and longing after the things of

this world, in which there is no profit. It is true we should

look after the things of this world and devote all to the

building up of the Kingdom of God. According to the present

feelings of many of our brethren, they would arrogate to them-

selves this world and all that pertains to it, and cease not day

nor night to see that it was devoted to the building up of the

Kingdom of the devil. and if they had the power, they would

build a rail-road to carry it to Hell and establish themselves

there! Where are the eyes and hearts of this people? Where is

their interest in their own Salvation and that of their fore–

fathers? We enjoy privileges that are enjoyed by no one else on

the face of the earth. suppose we were awake to this thing,

namely the salvation of the human family, this house would be

crowded – as we hope it will be – from Monday Morning until

Saturday night. This house was built here in this place purposely, where it is warm and pleasant in the winter time, and

comfortable to work, also for the Lamanites and all those coming

from the South and other places to receive their Endowments and

other blessings. What do you suppose the fathers would say if

they could speak from the dead! Would they not say, We have

lain here thousands of Years, here in this prison house, waiting

for this dispensation to come. Here we are bound and fettered

in the Association of those who are filthy” What would they

whisper in our ears? Why! if they had the power the very

thunders of heaven would be in our ears, if we could but realize

the importance of the work we are engaged in. All the Angels of

heaven are looking at this little handful of people, and

stimulating them to the Salvation of the human family, so also

are the devils in hell looking at this people too. and trying to

overthrow us, and the people are still shaking hands with the

servants of the devil. instead of sanctifying themselves and

calling upon the Lord and doing the work which he has commanded

us. and put into our hands to do. When I think upon this

subject, I want the tongues of Seven thunders to wake up the

people. Can the fathers be saved without us? No. Can we be

saved without them? No. and if we do not wake up and cease to

long after the things of this earth, we will find that we as

individuals will go down to hell, although the Lord will

preserve a people unto Himself.

“Now we are ready to give Endowments. Do you have any

feelings for those who have died without having the Gospel? The

Spirit was awakened in the people in the North. When we gave

the word that we should do no more work in the Endowment House,

they came to us crying and pleading to be baptized for their

dead. What else could they do? They can come here and do the

work for their dead. and put these poor prisoners on the ground

where they will be free. Do we realize this? As long as we

tarry here, we are subject to the world. But now go to, like

men and women, and say, we will embrace the truth and enter into

the covenants of God, and carry them out. Then the bonds are

broken and the hearts of the people are united in the Father. 

Perhaps, brethren and sisters, you will not get my meaning, but

now go to work and let these holes in the ground alone, and let

the Gentiles alone, who would destroy us if they had the power. 

You are running after them, and some of our brethren are putting

their wives and daughters into their society, and will go to the

devil with them too, if they do not look out. I would not have

a dollar on the earth if I had to get it there. It has been the

Kingdom of God with me. What I have, I have got in this

Kingdom. Well, now, some of the Elders are running after these

holes in the ground, and I see men before me in this house, that

have no right to be here, they are as corrupt in their hearts as

they can be, and we take them by the hand and call them brother. You will go to hell [unreadable] [if you do not ?] repent. You

may think this is plain talk, it is not as plain as you will

find by and by. If you should ever go to the Gates of heaven,

Jesus will say he never knew you, while you have been saying

your prayers and going to your Meetings and are as corrupt in

your hearts as men can be. You had better stop now and repent

of your sins, and sin no more while there is yet time. and

before the doors are Closed against you. I want to wake you up,

and if I had the power to lift the Vail from your eyes, and let

you see things as they are, you would be astonished. Not but

what there are a great majority of the people as good as they

know how to be. Now I will say, bless the people, that they may

do better, but show some of the Elders of Israel according to

their present conduct, a dollar on one side, and Eternal life on

the other, and I fear they would choose the dollar.

“We are now prepared to attend to Baptizing and giving

Endowments, and shall appoint Tuesdays and Wednesdays for

baptisms, and Thursdays and Fridays for Endowments and Sealings,

as a standing appointment for the present,

“God bless you. Amen.

“I do not know whether the people are satisfied with the

services of the dedication of the Temple or not. We should be

satisfied, but I do not mean to and never expect to be satisfied

until the devil is whipped and driven from off the face of the


The Choir sang the Hymn, “Glorious things of thee are

Spoken,” and the Assembly was dismissed by prayer by Elder B.

Young Jr.

The People passed out at the east door.

110. “St. George Temple. Building and dedication services,

1877–1927.”; Church Archives; Restricted Document; CR/343/19/

Vol. 2; January 1, 1877. In a dedicatory prayer used in the St.

George Temple is the following beautiful invocation:

We thank thee, O Lord, that (p.2) Thy people who Thou hast

led to this distant land and whom Thou hast preserved by Thine

own right arm, have been permitted to establish themselves in

the home which Thou hast given them, and that, through Thy

continued blessings, they have been enabled to gather together

the materials of which this building is composed; to put

together and erect the same, even a Temple, which we dedicate

and now consecrate to Thee, that it may be Holy unto Thee the

Lord our God, for Sacred and Holy purposes, and that the

blessing, even Life forevermore may be commanded here from

Heaven, even from Thy presence and may flow through the Ordinances which appertain unto Thy Holy Place unto us Thy children.

111. Church Archives; CR 343/19 (vault) contains book with

information about building, dedication and beginning of temple

work. A dedication was conducted January 1, 1877 in the sealing

room w/ Brigham Young, Wilford Woodruff, Erastus Snow, and

Brigham Young Jr. present. At the occasion Erastus Snow, Brigham

Young Jr. and Wilford Woodruff gave dedicatory prayers and

Brigham Young spoke–all recorded in this book and in journal of

Wilford Woodruff. From the Temple Book (Apparently this was

prepared by Wilford Woodruff himself using his diary as one

source. It closes “Salt Lake City March 26, 1883 signed. Wilford

Woodruff.” Prepared by him and copied into the St. George

book.); 1 January 1877.

<1> pp. 23-24 from WW’s dedicatory prayer:

“that Thou wilt lay Thy hand upon Thy servant Brigham unto

the renewal of his body and the healing of all his infirmities,

and the lengthening out of his days and years. Yea, Oh! Lord,

may he live to behold the inhabitants of Zion united and enter

into the holy order of God. And keep the Celestial Law. that

they may be justified before Thee. May he live to behold Zion

redeemed, and successfully fight the devils, visible or in-

visible, that make war upon They [sic] Saints. May he live to

behold other Temples built…. that Thy Servant Brigham may

stand in the flesh to behold the nation which now occupies the

Land upon which Thou Oh! Lord, hast said the Zion of God should

stand in the latter-days, that Nation, who has shed the blood of

Prophets and Saints, which cries unto God, day and night for

vengeance [sic]…, that he may live to see that Na[t]ion, if

they will not repent and serve God, broken in pieces like a

potters vessel, and swept from off the face of the earth, as

with a leson [sic] of destriction [sic] as were the Jaredites

and Nephites, that the land of Zion, may cease to groan under

the wickedness, and abominations….” [p. 27] “bless all the

organizations of the Church and Kingdom. May Thy people

accomplish the work unto which they are ordained; build up the

Zion of God and prepare the earth for the coming of the Son of

Man. Bless the Female Relief Societies throughout the land of

Zion. May they fully accomplish the object of their organization by thy servant Joseph, may they influence the daughters of

Zion to deeds of virtue, holiness, righteousness and truth, may

the blessings of Sarah, Huldah, Hannah, Anna and Mary, the

ancient Prophetesses and holy women rest upon them.”

<2> pp. 33-34 from Erastus Snow’s dedicatory prayer:

“Bless especially they [sic] servant Brigham Young, whom

Thou has given us for a leader and President over all thy

people. by whose hand Thou didst lead them into this land, and

plant their feet in the tops of the mountains, inspired him to

build this house unto Thee with all the Apartments and appointments thereoff. [sic] Comfort him in his old age, heal up his

body, relieve him of aches and pains, fill him with the revelation of thy Spirit to speak they [sic] word unto thy people. and

that he may be able to order all things in this Thine House, and

among thy people as thou wilt. Bless also his wives and

children and all that Thou hast given him.”

<3> pp. 38 from Brigham Young Jr’s prayer:

“Bless thine aged Servant Brigham Young, with strength to

labor in this building, as seemeth good unto Thee righteous


112. Journal of Discourses 18:303; Brigham Young; at the

Temple, St. George; January 1, 1877. According to Masonic

tradition, Hiram Abiff was murdered in the Jerusalem Temple

because he would not reveal the Master’s password. However,

perhaps President Young was referring to Zachariah, for which

see Matthew 23:35; Luke 11:51 and 2 Chronicles 24:20.

It is true that Solomon built a Temple for the purpose of

giving endowments, but from what we can learn of the history of

that time they gave very few if any endowments, and one of the

high priests was murdered by wicked and corrupt men, who had

already begun to apostatize, because he would not reveal those

things appertaining to the Priesthood that were forbidden him to

reveal until he came to the proper place. 

113. Church Archives; CR 343/19 (vault) contains book with

information about building, dedication and beginning of temple

work. From the Temple Book (Apparently this prepared by Wilford

Woodruff himself using his diary as one source. It closes “Salt

Lake City March 26, 1883 signed. Wilford Woodruff.” Prepared by

him and copied into the St. George book.); 9 January 1877.

“I Wilford Woodruff, bear testimony, that Prest. B. Young,

told me to go to work and prepare the Temple for giving Endowments and I had made the preparations according to his acceptance. And on the 9th of Jan. 1877 we repaired to the Temple,

and for the first time the Ordinance of baptism for the dead was

performed in the Temple of St. George. Wilford Woodruff went

into the font, by the direction of Prest. Brigham Young, and

administered the ordinance of baptism for the first 141 persons. and confirmed the first person. Prest. Young laying on hands at

the same time.

114. Church Archives; CR 343/19 (vault) contains book with

information about building, dedication and beginning of temple

work. From the Temple Book (Apparently this prepared by Wilford

Woodruff himself using his diary as one source. It closes “Salt

Lake City March 26, 1883 signed. Wilford Woodruff.” Prepared by

him and copied into the St. George book.); January 1877.

pp. 10-11 indicate that in addition to the men mentioned as

having been selected by BY and others added by WW for temple

work, there were fourteen women “called by Prest. B. Young” in

January 1877.

115. Letter Press Book # 4; BYU Special Collections; Mss 188,

L. John Nuttall Papers, Container #4; p. 290; c. January 1877.



In January 1877, shortly after the lower portion of the St.

George Temple was dedicated, President Brigham Young, in

following up in the Endowments written, became convinced that it

was necessary to have the formula of the Endowments written, and

he gave directions to have the same put in writing.

Shortly afterwards he explained what the Lecture at the

Veil should portray, and for this purpose appointed a day when

he would personally deliver the Lecture at the Veil. Elders J.

D. T. McAllister and L. John Nuttall prepared writing material,

and as the President spoke they took down his words. Elder

Nuttall put the same into form and the writing was submitted to

President Young on the same evening at his office in residence

at St. George. He there made such changes as he deemed proper,

and when he finally passed upon it said: This is the Lecture at

the Veil to be observed in the Temple.

A copy of the Lecture is kept at the St. George Temple, in

which President Young refers to Adam in his creation &c.

  /s/ L. John Nuttall

For Presidents W. Woodruff

  Geo. Q. Cannon

  Jos. F. Smith.

June 3, 1892

Salt Lake City,

116. Diary of L. John Nuttall; Brigham Young speaking; 7

February 1877. 

When we got our washings and anointings under the hands of

the Prophet Joseph at Nauvoo, we had only one room to work in

with the exception of a little side room or office where we were

washed and anointed, had our garments placed upon us and

received our New Name. After he had performed these ceremonies,

he gave the key words, signs, tokens and penalties. Then after

this we went into the large room over the store in Nauvoo. 

Joseph divided up the room the best that he could, hung up the

veil, marked it, gave us our instructions as we passed along

from one department to another, giving us signs, tokens,

penalties with the key words pertaining to those signs. After

we had got through, Brother Joseph turned to me and said: 

`Brother Brigham this is not arranged right, but we have done

the best we could under the circumstances in which we are

placed, and I wish you to take this matter in hand and organize

and systematize all these ceremonies with the signs, tokens,

penalties and key words.’ I did so and each time I got something more; so that when we went through the Temple at Nauvoo, I

understood and knew how to place them there.

117. Letter from Brigham Young to Abraham Washburn; CHO;

Ms/f/219/reel 22/p. March 9th 1877.

  St. George, Utah

  March 9th 1877


Abraham Washburn,

Monroe, Sevier Co.

  Dear Brother,

In reply to your questions: as

you and your wife received your Endowments before being sealed

as husband and wife there is no need of the children being

sealed to you.

As to the New Name when you and your wife get to the Temple

and to the proper place you can get it from your wife, but not

till then.

Your Brother in the Gospel.

Brigham Young

118. Jans Christian Anderson Weibye Daybooks; CHO, Daybook #5,

p. 60; July 9, 1877. Typed as in the original without use of

[sic]. J.C.A. Weibye born Sept 26, 1824; died Feb 28, 1893.

Prs. E. Snow said, when we can get time, we will give

Endowment for Each Priesthood separate, and after a while when

Temples is built we will give Endowment to each according to

what Priesthood they hold; they we will give men the Endowment

of the Aronic Priesthood and nothing else.

119. Journal of Discourses, Vol 19:229-230; Wilford Woodruff;

New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, Utah; Sunday afternoon, September 16, 1877.

I will say here, before closing, that two weeks before I

left St. George, the spirits of the dead were gathered around

me, wanting to know why we did not redeem them. Said they, “You

have had the use of the Endowment House for a number of years,

and yet nothing has ever been done for us. We laid the foundation of the government you now enjoy, and we never apostatized

from it, but we remained true to it and were faithful to God.” 

These were the signers of the Declaration of Independence, and

they waited on me for two days and two nights. I thought it

very singular, that notwithstanding so much work had been done,

and yet nothing had been done for them. The thought never

entered my heart, from the fact, I suppose, that heretofore our

minds were reaching after our more immediate friends and

relatives. I straightway went into the baptismal font and

called upon Brother MacAllister to baptize me for the signers of

the Declaration of Independence, and fifty other eminent men,

making one hundred in all, including John Wesley, Columbus, and

others; I then baptized him for every President of the United

States, except three; and when their cause is just, somebody

will do the work for them. * * *

I have felt to rejoice exceedingly in this work of redeem-

ing the dead. I do not wonder at President Young saying he felt

moved upon to call upon the Latter-day Saints to hurry up the

building of these Temples. He felt the importance of the work;

but now he has gone, it rests with us to continue it, and God

will bless our labors and we will have joy therein. This is a

preparation necessary for the second advent of the Savior; and

when we shall have built the Temples now contemplated, we will

then begin to see the necessity of building others, for in

proportion to the diligence of our labors in this direction,

will we comprehend the extent of the work to be done, and the

present is only a beginning. When the Savior comes, a thousand

years will be devoted to this work of redemption; and Temples

will appear all over this land of Joseph,—North and South

America—and also in Europe and elsewhere; and all the descendants of Shem, Ham, and Japheth who received not the Gospel in

the flesh, must be officiated for in the Temples of God, before

the Savior can present the kingdom to the Father, saying, “It is


120. John Taylor Letter Book; Church Historian’s Office; Nov.

7, 1877.


Ut. Terr.

to: Geo. Q. Cannon, MC   Nov. 7, 1877

Washington, D.C.

  My Dear Nephew

 . . . We have it in our mind, so soon as the addition to the

Temple is roofed in, which will not be long, to place an alter

therein and have sealings performed. As the need of a place

where marriages can be legally performed according to the Holy

order of the Priesthood, somewhere nearer to our Northern

settlements than the St. George Temple is every day pressing

itself more forcibly upon our notice. We realize that the

avenues to lawful marriages should not be diminished amongst the

Saints, but that it should be encouraged by every consistent

means within our power, at the same time I am in my own feelings, very much opposed to these promiscuous marriages for time

that are being celebrated here, there and everywhere by the

Bishops and others. . . .

John Taylor

121. John Taylor Letter; November 15, 1877.


November 15, 1877

To all Stake Presidents

– Young people marry for time

– Deemed salutary to have the Priesthood discountenance

wherever practicable the marriages of Latter-day Saints in any

place not especially dedicated and set apart for the ordinances

of the House of the Lord.

– To aid in the accomplishment of this object, it was

unanimously resolved by the Council of the Apostles to re-open

the Endowment House in this city for the performance of certain


1. Sealing those married for time.

2. Sealing the living who could not go to St. George

because of inconvenience.

3. To give endowments to those not having received.

4. Giving endowments to the aged, sick or infirm – if

Bishops thought they would not live until the Salt Lake, Manti

or Logan temples were completed and opened.

Must have recommend. (Had to be re-baptized to receive

these blessings.)

122. Journal of Discourses, Vol. 19:250; Elder Charles C. Rich;

at Quarterly Conference; Paris, Bear Lake, Idaho; February 10,

1878. [Referring to the revelation in D&C 130:10-11.]

It was a long time after the Prophet Joseph Smith had

received the keys of the kingdom of God, and after Hyrum and

others had received many blessings, that the Lord gave Joseph a

revelation, to show him and others how they could ask for and

receive certain blessings. We read in the [R]evelations of St.

John, that the Saints are to receive a white stone, `and in the

stone a new name, which no man knoweth save him that receiveth

it.’ Joseph tells us that this new name is a key-word, which

can only be obtained through the endowments. This is one of the

keys and blessings that will be bestowed upon the Saints in

these last days, for which we shall be very thankful. 

123. Journal of Discourses, Vol 19:299; Elder Wilford Woodruff;

Saturday morning, April 6, 1878.

And I wish all Israel to understand that when we impart of

our substance to build Temples that we do not do it to benefit

the Lord at all, he had his endowments a long time before we

were born, and also passed through his probation. We are his

children, he wishes to exalt us back to his presence, and he

knows very well we are obliged to walk in the same path and

receive the same ordinances in order to inherit the same glory

that surrounds him.

124. Meeting of Workers at St. George Temple; John D. T.

McAllister, President, M. F. Farnsworth, Recorder; 10 A.M. 31

Aug 1880.

Prest J. D. T. McAllister expressed his pleasure to meet

with us, and to be one, with us in our desires to go forward and

Minister before the Lord in Sacred things, in His Stead upon the

Earth. We are called to do this work before the Lord, act for

him just as much as any man that was ever called. Aaron was not

called any more of God, than we have been who labor in this

House. I am glad of the unity, that we can live together and

work together. . . * * * We will work towards perfecting

ourselves and be guarded in our acts and Sayings, that God will

accept of us and our labors. Those having charge of the Rooms

will please to See that there is no loud talking or laughter in

their rooms, avoid making a noise and Jar with the pipes in

using the water &c. With regard to new Names. give easy names

to be understood: Scripture names or names not in the Scripture, there are many good names of those who have lived upon the

earth which are easy to understand, don’t give any fanciful

names, be Sure they get the New Name and that they understand

it. Avoid all you can having a noise with the Steam or Engine

during prayer: Every person called to work in this house Should

Notice the time and be in their Seats at prayer time. Brethren

notice the prayer Roll and try and be here when your time comes

for prayer, even if you have to be excused afterwards: Door

Keepers See that there is no loud talking or laughter at the

door. During the time of the Endowments, there Should be no

knitting or Sewing in any of the rooms, no loud talking or

noise, Workers who are called to take parts, commit them [to

memory] So as not to have to read them but have your book with

you So you can refer if necessary.

125. Journal of Discourses, Vol 22:209; President Wilford

Woodruff; Delivered in the Salt Lake Assembly Hall; Semi-Annual

Conference of the Salt Lake Stake of Zion; Sunday Afternoon,

January 9, 1881.

We are building temples to the name of the Lord. What are

we building them for? That we may enter in and redeem our dead. The Lord has had his endowments a great many years ago. He has

ascended to his thrones, principalities and powers in the

eternities. We are his children.

126. Deseret News Weekly, p. 546; President Wilford Woodruff;

September 28, 1881.

“(God) has had his endowments a great many years ago. He

has ascended to his thrones, principalities and powers in the

eternities. We are his children. . . . We are here to fill a

probation and receive an education.”

127. St. George Stake Historical Record; CHO, Number 97707; 20

November 1881.

Pres. Erastus Snow arose and read Par 12, 13, 14, & 15 of

Section 128 of the D. & C. He said the general features of the

St. George Temple are in conformity to those of the Kirtland

Temple which was dedicated in April 1836.

That temple may be said to have been built to show forth

the order of the priesthood, Aaronic and Melchizedek–the

priesthood there received the ordinance of the washing of feet

and the anointing of the head with oil. This was confirmed to

those holding the priesthood. There was no baptismal font in

the temple at Kirtland for that ordinance had not been revealed

to the people.

By the time the Nauvoo Temple was being built the doctrine

of the baptism for the dead was revealed and one of the first

thing[s] attended to there was the preparation of the font for

the Baptism of the Dead. It was revealed here in St. George to

the prophet Brigham Young that there should be variations made

in the temples to be built. This was given unto the Prophet

Brigham in answer to his question, “Oh Lord show unto thy

servants if we shall build all temples after the same pattern?” 

The answer came. “Do you all build your houses after the same

pattern? Do you after increasing your families build after the

same pattern used when your family is small? So shall the

growth of the knowledge of the principles of the Gospel among my

people cause diversity in the pattern of Temples.”

128. History of the St. George Temple, Its Cost & Dedication

and the Labor Thereon.; Church Archives, CR 343/19 (vault);

March 26, 1883.

The corner stones were laid on the 10″ day of March, 1873,

and labor was continued thereon until/ Jan 1″, 1877, when it

was dedicated to God. (See W. Woodruff’s Journal of Jan 1″,

1877, which contains the dedicatory prayers of W. Woodruff,

Erastus Snow, and B. Young Jr., also the speech of President

Young.). I, Wilford Woodruff, bear testimony, that Prest. B.

Young told me to go to work and prepare the Temple for giving

Endowments, and I had made the preparations according to his

acceptance; and on the 9″ of Jan., 1877, we repaired to the

Temple and for the first time the ordinance of baptism for the

dead was performed in the Temple of St. George. Wilford

Woodruff went into the font by the direction of Prest. Brigham

Young and administered the ordinance of baptism for the first

140 persons, and confirmed the first person, // Prest. Young

laying on hands at the same time. John L. Smith administered

the ordinance of baptism for the next 83 persons, making 223

baptisms and confirmations during that day. Wilford Woodruff

Confirmed one 1. J. D. T. McAllister confirmed 64, A. H.

Raleigh 15, H. W. Bigler 123, and Erastus Snow 20. Susie Amelia

Young Dunford was the first baptized and confirmed by W.


Prest. Brigham Young requested me to take charge of the

Temple, which I did. He also requested me to write all the

ordinances of the Church from the first baptism and confirmation

through every ordinance of the Church. Geo. Q. Cannon assisted

some in this writing, and when I had finished it to the satisfaction of the President, he said to me, “Now you have before

you an ensample to carry on the endowments in all the temples

until the coming of the Son of Man.”

On the 8″ of April, 1877, W. Woodruff was appointed in the

public assembly to take charge of the Temple and preside over

it, and in private conversation with the President, he said he

wanted me to take the whole charge of the Temple and attend to

all affairs connected with the endowments, sealings &c. I told

him I was not able to go to the altar and do all the sealings as

I had injured myself at that labor in the Salt Lake Endowment

House. Prest. Young told me to go to work and ordain some men

to help me to do the sealing. He told me to set apart J.D.T.

McAllister and David H. Cannon for that purpose and, if I needed

more, to set them apart. I set apart Br. McAllister to that

work April 14″, 1877. I set apart David H. Cannon for the same

purpose on the 27th of April. I also set apart James G. Bleak

to officiate at the altar some time afterward (I do not recollect the date). (2d March 1881.)

Prest. Young gave me power and authority to give second

anointings and seal women to men as I might be led by the Spirit

of God. I parted with Prest. Young for the last time in the

flesh at 9:30 A.M. on April 16″, 1877, when he started for Salt

Lake City. Brigham Young Jr., was very sick at the time.

When I left St. George, I placed the presidency of the

Temple in the hands of John David Thompson McAllister, who was

to preside over it in my absence.

This is the testimony which I Wilford Woodruff bear to all

whom it may concern.   Salt lake City, March

26, 1883.

/s/ Wilford Woodruff.

[The following is in red ink and in the hand of John D. T.


Length of Building 141ft8in

Width ” ” 93 ” 4 “

Height from grade of Gr g 84 feet to top of Parapet.

Tower 31 feet Square, and 175 feet to top of Vane from the


The first Main room above the basement is 99 feet by 78 feet

Ceiling is elliptical and the center of the Ceiling is 27 feet


The Font room is 35 feet by 40 feet

Number of inside Doors 92. Outside doors 8

Round windows 50. Long windows 58. Extra long 8.

Cost to 31st Decr 1879  $420,941.94

 do ”  ”  ”  1882  457,443.90

 ”  ”  ”  ”  1883  470,394.31

The year 1875 was the largest expenditure “123,433.64

/s/ JDT Mc A.

129. “The Higher Ordinances.” Deseret News Semi-Weekly, 15

February 1884, p. 2. No doubt, Scovil’s letter was dated

February instead of January. 

Springville, Jany. 2nd, 1884. [sic]

Editor Deseret News:

I noticed an article in the Deseret News of January 25th,

1884, in relation to Church Doctrines. I can testify that on

the 3rd day of May, 1842, Joseph Smith the Prophet called upon

five or six, viz: Shadrack [sic] Roundy, Noah Rogers, Dimick B.

Huntington, Daniel Cairns [sic], and myself (I am not certain

but that Hosea Stout was there also) to meet with him (the

Prophet) in his business office (the upper part of his brick

store). He told us that the object he had was for us to go to

work and fit up that room preparatory to giving endowments to a

few Elders that he might give unto them all the keys of power

pertaining to the Aronic [sic] and Melchisedec [sic] Priest-


We therefore went to work making the necessary preparations, and everything was arranged representing the interior of

a temple as much as the circumstances would permit, he being

with us dictating everything. He gave us many items that were

very interesting to us, which sank with deep weight upon my

mind, especially after the temple was finished at Nauvoo, and I

had received the ordinances in which I was among the first, as I

had been called upon to work in the Temple as one of the hands

during the winter. Some weeks previous to the dedication he

told us that we should have the privilege of receiving the whole

of the ordinances in due time. The history of Joseph Smith

speaks for itself. But I can and do testify that I know of a

surety that room was fitted up by his order which we finished in

the forenoon of the said 4th of May, 1842. And he gave us to

understand that he intended to have everything done by him that

was in his power while he remained with us. He said his work

was nearly done and he should roll the burden of the kingdom

upon the shoulders of the Twelve. I am the only one living that

I know of, who helped to fit up that room, except Hosea Stout,

[who] was there.

I am, most respectfully, your brother in the Covenant.

/s/ Lucius N. Scovil.

130. Compiled by Alan H. Gerber; Film/298/#101/V. 39; pp.

85-86; c. May 17, 1884.

“When did full Temple rites commence in Utah, especially in

Salt Lake City?

“The first sealing ordinance was performed in the home of

Franklin D. Richards, he having two wives sealed to him at that

time. The date was the 13th of October, 1849. (Saturday by H.

K.) The Endowment House was opened on the 20th of February

1851. Endowments for the living, baptism for the dead, sealings

for the living and sealings for the dead couples were performed

in the Endowment House. ENDOWMENTS FOR THE DEAD were not

performed until in the St George Temple in 1877. President

Brigham Young was in St George and took part in the introduction

of the ordinances there. President Wilford Woodruff was made

President of the Temple.

“Sealings for the living were done in the Nauvoo Temple as

well as in the Endowment House; but Endowments for the dead were

not done until the St. George Temple. There were a few children

sealed to their parents in the Endowment House, but not many.”

Another item of interest is mentioned by Joseph F. Smith

(His. Record 194). After the opening of the St. George Temple,

the Endowment House in Salt Lake City was closed for ordinances. But after the death of President Young, when it was found

necessary to again open it, I was placed in charge thereof,

which position I filled until the summer of 1884, when the house

was again closed.” (This second closing presumably occurred

after the dedication of the Logan Temple, May 17, 1884).

131. Journal of Discourses, Vol 25:183; President John Taylor;

delivered at the dedication of the Temple, in the Tabernacle,

Logan, Cache County; Sunday afternoon, May 18, 1884.

Joseph Smith, before his death, was much exercised about

the completion of the Temple in Nauvoo, and the administering of

ordinances therein. In his anxiety and for fear he should not

live to see the Temple completed, he prepared a place over what

was know as the brick-store–which many of you who lived in

Nauvoo will recollect–where to a chosen few he administered

those ordinances that we now have today associated with Endowments, so that if anything should happen to him–which he

evidently contemplated–he would feel that he had then fulfilled

his mission, that he had conferred upon others all the keys

given to him by the manifestations of the power of God.

132. Letter from John Taylor to Elder Wm H. Folson; April 8th


April 8th 1886

Elder Wm H. Folsom,

Supt. Manti Temple,

  Dear Brother:

  We are in receipt of your letters of the 5th and

6th inst. and have persued with interest the condition of the

work on the Temple.

Respecting the painting and other ornamentations of the

Temple at St. George and Logan my recollection is not sufficiently distinct, it having been some tine since I saw them, to

make any particular suggestions to you upon the subject. 

However, it is important that Brother Weggeland be impressed to

so arrange the painting in the Garden that the Tree of Life will

be convenient for the purpose for which it is used, and that the

whole scenery be arranged so that the person at the Altar in

giving his lecture can make convenient reference to the various

objects. Complaint has been made respecting these points at

Logan and before painting the Garden at Manti some one of

experience who is familiar with the work and the giving of

lectures in the Garden should be consulted as to the proper

position for everything to be placed in with reference to the

Altar and the Cherubim &c.

We have no objection to the employment of Bros Weggeland

and Morris. Enclosed please find a permit for you to go to the

Temple at Logan.

By applying to Brother James Jack he will give you an order

for 2000 bushels of wheat on Bp’s Agent George Farnsworth–for

$500.00 on the Provo Factory–$500.00 on Z. C. M. I. and

$1000.00 on Washington Factory on Manti Temple account.

  With kind regards,

Your Brother,

John Taylor

133. Compilation by Alan H. Gerber; CHO, Film/298/#101/v. 39 p.

77-78; c. June 8, 1887.

In 1887, shortly before the death of President John Taylor,

Wilford Woodruff, then the President of the Quorum of Twelve and

next in seniority in the Priesthood calling, received a communi-

cation from Elder Samuel Roskelly, who was at the time in charge

of the temple at Logan. From the inquiry of Elder Roskelly it

seems some doubts had arisen as to the propriety of certain

temple ordinances, and changes were suggested. “You say,” said

President Woodruff, in his reply “`We are told here,’ so and so

concerning Sealings and Adoptions. Who is it has told you these

things and given these instructions? I don’t think it can be

President Taylor, for neither he, nor I, have ever received such

teachings from either Joseph Smith or Brigham Young. But I have

been taught right the reverse by President Young.” Then on the

unchangeableness of these ordinances, President Woodruff, in

this letter to Elder Roskelly, dated St. George, Utah, June 8,

1887, said:

“Your letter of the 1st reached me last night. * * *

“Now, concerning endowments, in all its phases. My own

views are these–that we ought to follow out, as far as we can,

the pattern laid down by our leaders. I consider that if there

ever was any man who thoroughly understood the principle of the

Endowments it was Brigham Young. He has been with Joseph Smith

from the beginning of the Endowments to the end, and he under-

stood it if any man did. And before his death he required me to

write in a Book every ordinance of the Church and Kingdom of God

from the first to the last, beginning with baptism, to the last

ordinance performed, through every department of the endowments. I was several weeks doing this writting, [sic] and President

Young corrected it all, until he got through. Then he said to

me, `Now, there you have a pattern of all the ordinances or

endowments for every temple we shall build, until the coming of

the Son of Man.’

“Now, if I ever have anything to do or say, in any Temple

on the earth concerning the Endowment, I would say: Follow the

pattern laid down by our leaders. Follow the pattern that

President Young has set us, and not deviate from it one iota. 

And if we do that, we may have a hundred Temples at work, and

all the work and ceremonies will be alike in every temple. 

While on the other hand, if every man who is called to preside

over a temple has his own way, and introduces his own form of

ceremonies, our Temple work would be as diverse as the sectarian

world, and God would not approbate it.

“Brother Roskelly, I have given endowments in Salt Lake

City for twenty years, and I received my endowment under the

hand of the Prophet Joseph Smith. I directed the fixing up of

the Temple at St. George for giving Endowments, under the

direction of President Young; since the rules are written for

our guidance in All future time, I feel very strenuous that in

our giving Endowments we should all work alike, and not deviate

from the written word.”

134. Journal of Abraham H. Cannon; Friday, December 6, 1889.

In speaking of the recent examination before Judge Anderson, Father said that he understood when he had his endowment in

Nauvoo that he took an oath against the murderers of the Prophet

Joseph as well as other prophets, and if he had ever met any of

those who had taken a hand in that massacre he would undoubtedly

have attempted to avenge the blood of the martyrs. The Prophet

charged Stephen Markham to avenge his blood should he be slain;

after the Prophet’s death, Bro. Markham attempted to tell this

to an assembly of Saints, but Willard Richards pulled him down

from the stand, as he feared the effect on the enraged people.

Bro. Joseph F. Smith was traveling some years ago near Carthage,

when he met a man who said he had arrived just five minutes too

late to see the Smiths killed. Instantly a dark cloud seemed to

overshadow Bro. Smith and he asked how this man looked upon the

deed. Bro. Smith was oppressed by a most horrible feeling as he

waited for a reply. After a brief pause the man answered, “Just

as I have always looked upon it–that it was a d—-d cold-

blooded murder.” The cloud immediately lifted from Bro. Smith

and he found that he had his open pocket knife grasped in his

hand in his pocket, and he believes that had this man given his

approval to that murder of the prophets, he would have immediately struck him to the heart.

135. Letter from President Wilford Woodruff to Elder John Henry

Smith, one of the Twelve Apostles; September 21, 1891.

Office of


  of the





21st 1891.


One of the Twelve Apostles.

Dear Brother:

The condition of many of the saints in Arizona in connection with their marriages has been brought to the attention of

the First Presidency. We understand that there are many couples

in that Territory who are prevented by poverty and other

circumstances from going to the Temple to have their sealings,

and that many of the children are being born out of the covenant

because of this.

We feel to take some action upon this, as it is a great

deprivation for Latter-day Saints to not have the privilege of

marrying and bearing children in the covenant. In view of this,

we have decided to authorize you, as one of the Apostles to

dedicate rooms which are now used for prayer according to the

holy order, and in those rooms solemnize marriages such as are

properly recommended, and which are of the class referred

to–that is, marriages of those who are unable, through poverty

or some other serious impediment, to go to the Temple of the

Lord to be sealed for time and for eternity. The authority is

hereby conferred upon you during this present visit to Arizona

to attend to cases of this kind, and perform the sealing

ordinances for time and for eternity. In doing this, we desire

you to be very careful and make a proper record of all such

sealings, that every case may be reported here; and in order

that this may be done, we furnish you a book in which you will

have entry made of all these sealings.

Praying the Lord to bless you upon this mission and in the

exercise of this authority,

I remain your brother,

/s/ Wilford Woodruff 

136. BYU Special Collections; Mss 188, L. John Nuttall Papers;

Container #4, Letter Press Book #4, p. 285. The insertions (^)

were added to the press copy in L. John Nuttall’s Letter press

book from where this is taken. October 7, 1891.

At a meeting of the First Presidency, Twelve Apostles,

Presiding Bishops, First Presidents of Seventies, Presidents of

Stakes and Bishops, held at the 18th Ward Chapel, Salt Lake

City, October 7, 1891. President Wilford Woodruff related the


“Over fifty years ago, while in Boston, he (^I) dreamed

that the Saints migrated to the Rocky Mountains, built a Temple

and dedicated it; that at the dedicatory services Elders were

set apart to go among the Gentile nations to bind the law and

seal the testimony. That when after our arrival here, the

question was discussed, as to what material should be used in

the Temple building, some suggesting brick and others adobe, he

(^I) made the remark that it never would be built of anything

else than cut Granite. This, so far has come to pass as he (^I)

saw it. Just before the death of Prest. Taylor, too, he (^I)

dreamed that the Temple was finished; and he (^I) saw the

grounds around filled with the Priesthood; and while wondering

why the people did not go into the Temple, Prest. Young came up

and he (^I, Prest. Woodruff.) asked why the brethren did not

enter the building; with that Prest. Young took from his pocket

the keys and handed them to him (^me) (Prest. Woodruff) telling

him (^me) to open the Temple and let the people in. In thinking

the matter over the following morning, he (^I) wondered why it

was that Prest. Young handed the keys to him (^me), seeing that

Prest. Taylor was alive and that they were not given to him. 

The following night, he (^I) received the same manifestation;

and addressing himself (^myself) to Prest. Taylor, he (^I) asked

him, why he did not come in (to the Temple); he answered that he

could not walk. In the morning, Prest. Woodruff said, he (^I)

felt that Prest. Taylor would not live to see the Temple

finished. A short time before Prest. Taylor’s death, Prest.

Woodruff said he (^I) received a letter from Prest. Cannon

informing him (^me) of the illness of Prest. Taylor; it also

stated that Prest. Taylor’s legs were swollen.” As to this

Prest. Woodruff remarked, it was of little consequence whether

he lived or not to witness the completion of the Temple; those

were things wholly in the hands of the Lord.

137. Abraham H. Cannon “Journal”; BYU Special Collections; Vol.

V, p. 87. 7 October 1891.

–Pres. Woodruff told of manifestations he had received 50

years ago concerning the temple. Before the material for its

construction had been selected, he knew it was to be constructed

of cut granite. Before Pres Taylor’s death he dreamed for two

nights in succession that he received the keys to the Temple

from Pres. Young, and at its dedication he beheld a large number

of elders called and sent forth into the world to bind up the

law and seal the testimony to the Gentiles.

138. Abraham H. Cannon “Journal”; BYU Special Collections; Vol.

XVI, pp. 54-5. 1 March 1892.

In the evening I took Sarah with me to President Woodruff’s

farm to celebrate his birthday, and to be present at the

dedication of his new house. * * *

Pres. Woodruff made some remarks at the close. * * * He

hoped to live to dedicate the Temple in this city, for he

dreamed on two occasions that he would be given the keys for

this edifice by Presidents Young and Taylor who had preceded

him. He believed that he would live to accomplish this labor.

139. Diary of Lorenzo Brown; Mor/m270.1/B8142, p. 410; October

16, 1892.

Took Breakfast at the House & drove to through Leeds to

Harrisburg to dinner then to St George before night Stopped at

Edwards About town chatting & handshaking Everyone knows me

Many of the younger faces have grown out of my knowledge I have

been away for nine years but all seem pleased to see me & make

me welcome and all invite me to come back & live

For a few days looking around town then commenced work in

the Temple Wife has found a list of names to work for & I am

assisting her I find the ceremonies the same as ever & am

informed that the ceremonies as revised & corrected are used in

Logan & Manti have not been altered one whit but word for word &

the same will be used in the Salt Lake

140. “Temple Manifestations,” by Joseph Heinerman, p. 119;

April 8, 1893.

April 8, 1893 Sunday. Received special permits for myself

and my sons . . . to attend all the temple services. . . . Pres.

Wilford Woodruff said . . . of seeing a vision of thousands of the Lamanites enter the temple by the door in the west end of the

temple and would do as much ordinance work in an hour as the

other brethren could do in a day. (Journal of Jesse Nathaniel

Smith, p. 393.)

141. Historical Department. Confidential Research Files,

1950–1974; CR/100/14/#2/Volume 8:16,17; Church Archives Vault. 

From a xerox of the original letter. A copy of this letter may be found in: First Presidency. Letterpress Copybooks, 1877-1949. Jan. 1894–Nov. 1894; CR/1/20/# 23; Volume 28, pp. 633-634. Church Archives. August 31, 1894.

Office of


  of the





August 31, 1894.

Elder Lorenzo Snow,

  Prest. Salt Lake Temple.

Dear Brother:-

As a result of the conference of the brethren engaged as

ordinance workers in the several Temples, held at Salt Lake

Temple, some time ago, the following slight corrections have

been adopted by us, which you will please note:

In the creation on the fifth day a grammatical error

occurs. The word “their” is used instead of “its”; the word

their, therefore, is changes [sic] to its. In the lecture the

words “next room” are used in the Terrestrial room when that

same room is referred to; the words “the next” therefore have

been changed to “this”, as the appropriate form.

In the placing of the girdle, it should be placed on the

outside of the apron strings.

In the ceremonies at the veil, the practice has been to use

the words, “this man Adam,” while in the Logan Temple the words,

“this man, representing Adam”, are used. It was decided to drop

the words, “this man representing,” and say “Adam, &c.”

The word “christian,” referred to in the lecture, in

connection with name, is dropped and the word “given” is


The words “and some have to go away on business,” which

occur at the end of the lecture, were expunged.

The words, “new name,” were substituted for the pronoun

“it,” to avoid ambiguity, where it reads in the lecture, “You

must (p. 2) remember “it”, that is, your new name.

The people, when being put under covenant, should signify

their assent by bowing and saying, “yes”.

It was left optional with the Temple President to use

persons as witnesses who were receiving endowments or to use

workers as such.

The words “that my tongue be torn from its roots in my

mouth,” were substituted for “from the roof of my mouth.”

In giving the sign and token of the Aaronic priesthood that

Salt Lake Temple use the word, “index”, meaning the fore-finger. It was decided to use the words, “fore finger,” instead of

“index finger,” the latter being more easily understood.

It has been the practice to mark the shirt, but we think

this unnecessary as it is not strictly a part of the Temple

clothing. The marking of the garment should be done in the

washing room and not at the veil; and the greatest care should

be taken to see that no person is permitted to leave that room

wearing an unmarked garment.

In the Salt Lake Temple the practice in the Garden is for

the couple at the altar to remain kneeling while the covenant

relating to the first token of the Aaronic Priesthood is being

administered, while the practice in the other Temples is for the

couple to arise. The reason given by the Salt Lake Temple for

not arising is that the couple would have to descend three

steps, and as a matter of convenience they were permitted to

remain on their knees. It was decided that the couples should


Your Brethren,

/s/ Wilford Woodruff

/s/ Geo. Q. Cannon

/s/ Jos. F. Smith

142. Wilford Woodruff: His Life and Labors; p. 562, 582, 584. 

Also Conference Report, April 7, 1898, p. 29. 

p. 562 Vision just before John Taylor’s death was on March

12, 1887. 4 months and 15 days before Taylor’s death.

p. 582 Is just an incidental comment on the above vision

before Taylor’s death.

p. 584 Has an extract purporting to be from the last entry

of Woodruff’s Journal for 1893. But the journal does not have

the last sentence of the page in it: “Nearly fifty years ago

while in the City of Boston I had a dream vision of going to the

Rocky Mountains to build a Temple there and to dedicate it to

the Lord.”

CR Wilford Woodruff address where he refers to being

“ordained to dedicate this Salt Lake Temple fifty years before

it was dedicated.”

143. Conference Report, p. 90; 10 April 1898. Wilford Woodruff

in his last discourse to the Church in General Conference, in

the very last paragraph sought to impress the importance of the

work of the Temple upon the Latter-day Saints:

Every father and mother has a great responsibility resting

upon them, to redeem their dead. Do not neglect it. You will

have sorrow if you do. Any man will who neglects the redemption

of his dead that he has power to officiate for here. When you

get to the other side of the veil, if you have entered into

these Temples and redeemed you[r] progenitors by the ordinances

of the House of God, you will hold the keys of their redemption

from eternity to eternity. Do not neglect this!”

144. Salt Lake Temple. Sisters Meeting Minutes, p. 67; Church

Archives, Restricted Document; CR/306/66/fd 1; 16 June 1899.

Sister B[athsheba] W. Smith . . . said that it was in the lodge room over the store [where] . . . there were two rooms over the store [below]. In one room they had a sheet hung up as a vail

[sic], and the first endowments were given there. . . . Joseph

gave me permission to stand by the vail [sic] and listen to the

ceremony, which I did. . . . Joseph said that Masonry was taken

from the priesthood. Our brethren used to belong to these

societies, but since the priesthood had been more fully established the brethren have withdrawn from these societies.

145. Church Archives; CR 343/19 (vault) contains book with

information about building, dedication and beginning of temple

work. From the Temple Book (Apparently this prepared by Wilford

Woodruff himself using his diary as one source. It closes “Salt

Lake City March 26, 1883 signed. Wilford Woodruff.” Prepared by

him and copied into the St. George book.); 9 May 1902.

From First Presidency to temple president David H. Cannon,

9 May 1902,

in answer to a series of questions propunded [sic] by him

to them. Re: must a person administering the Second Anointings

in the Temple be clothes [sic] in his Priestly apparel when

administering same? Ans:

President Young considered that it was absolutely necessary

“before the completion of our Temples,” but that when done in

the Temple this was optional and no longer required. “after the

completion of the Temples this was changed under the direction

of President Young himself.”

146. Temple Ordinances Book B, Outside of Temple; 25 July 1889

– 8 June 1903.

Sealings in Marriage, (single wives), from 25 July 1889 – 8

June 1903


Arizona – Mesa, Thatcher, Bowie, St. John, Snowflake,

Pinetop, Lehi, Springville, St. David, Woodruff.

Canada – Magrath, Sterling, Cardston.

Colorado – Manasseh, Sanford, Pueblo.

Mexico – Del Norte, Cave Valley (Chihuahua), Dublan,

Juarez, Los Palomas, Dias, Cuernavaca, Casa Grandes.

On the Pacific Ocean – Anthon H. Lund

Texas – El Paso

Utah – Kaysville, A. B. Benzon’s house – Salt Lake City by

Adolph Madsen.

By Whom:

By General Authorities and Stake Presidents

John Henry Smith, Geo. Q. Cannon, Joseph F. Smith, Geo.

Teasdale, Brigham Young, David K. Udall (Stake President), F. M.

Lyman, Thos. F. Rousche, John W. Taylor, Anthon H. Lund, Rodger

Clause, Heber J. Grant, Alex F. Macdonald (Stake President,


(1873 – Daniel H. Wells – sealing outside of temple)

147. Deseret Evening News (23 June 1903); found in Journal

History, pp. 3- 5; 12 June 1903.

Friday June 12, 1903

Weber Stake Reunion:

Joseph F. Smith speaking:

Aunt Bathsheba, widow of George A. Smith, who is with us

today, is the last living witness, so far as I know, who

received her endowments while Joseph Smith was living. Here is

Aunt Bathsheba, who received her endowments in Nauvoo as they

are now given in the Temples. She is a living witness and if

necessary she will tell us that she received her endowments in

Nauvoo as they are now given in the Temples. She is a living

witness and if necessary she will tell us that she received

these privileges under the direction of Joseph Smith. Opponents

say that Brigham Young established the endowments and also

plural marriage, out here is a witness who knows better. 

Brigham Young only sought to carry out the instruction he

received from Joseph Smith, and Joseph Smith as he received it

from God. So far as the principle of plural marriage is

concerned, we are not teaching it, nor practising [sic] it. * *

* Joseph Smith revealed plural marriage and the endowments, and

here is a living witness to those facts. So am I, for I

received it of those who received it from Joseph Smith. * * *

Aunt Bathsheba Smith was called upon and spoke briefly as

follows: President Smith has told you the truth. I know that

the endowments are given now the same as they were given by

Joseph Smith the Prophet. He was present with us and lectured

and talked with us after we had received our first ordinances,

and I have met him many times at councils which were held and he

told us many things and explained them to us, showed us how to

pray, and how to detect them when true or false angels come to

us, and many other true things he taught us, and he instituted

the endowments through the Lord, and it was not Brigham Young or

any one else. I know he was a true Prophet of God and this

knowledge could not be stronger if angels were to come and talk

to me. I know he never taught a thing that was wrong, and if we

obey him we will receive celestial glory and without we will

not. I bear this testimony and it is true, for I worked in the

Nauvoo Temple and in the Endowment House and in the Salt Lake

Temple. This is the first day I have left the Temple to go

anywhere since Sister Zina’s death. I was at the first meeting

when the Relief Society was organized in Nauvoo and I enjoyed

the teaching of the Prophet and tried to profit by it and to

teach my sisters. Brother Smith, I guess this will do?.

President Smith: “Did Brigham Young reveal plural marriage?”

Sister Smith “He did not. God revealed it through the

Prophet Joseph Smith. I have tried to be one with my husband

and I was just as happy with him as any woman could be, for I

loved him dearly and I knew why he practised [sic] the principle

of plural marriage. He knew it was a principle of exaltation,

and I wished him to receive as great an exaltation as any one,

and I expected to share it with him. If I lived my life over

again, I do not know that I could better it, though I have more

experience now.

Sister Smith then related a dream she had concerning her

husband and also some remarks made by the Prophet Joseph when

she was a young girl. Continuing she said, “God bless us all

and keep us in the line of our duty, that we may live our lives

in earnest and receive the glory and exaltation we seek, Amen.”

148. Joseph F. Smith Letterbook; October 27, 1903.

Parents endowed at Nauvoo. Sealing done in Brigham Young’s

office. Valid if record made.

149. Journal of Thomas A. Clawson; 1904-1906 Bk, p. 17; April

5, 1904. (Brother Clawson was ordained a high priest and made a

high councilor in the Salt Lake Stake on March 12, 1900. Then,

on April 1, 1904, he was set apart as a high councilor in the

newly organized “Ensign Stake”. He attended many prayer circles

in which members of the Twelve Apostles were present–see entry

for April 25, 1901.)

At Priesthood leadership meeting, the remarks of Joseph F.

Smith, “In regards to recommends to the Temple, the bishops

should only give them to saints to receive their first endowments and they should exercise more care and caution in giving

same, as some unworthy persons have been admitted to the Temple

and even some who were not members of the Church.

150. Joseph F. Smith’s Letter Book; October 22, 1904.

October 22, 1904 – Raymond, Canada – To Elder John W.

Taylor copy to Apostle George W. Teasdale in Mexico dated

October 26, 1901

Pres. Woodruff & Snow

Authorized some of the Apostles and perhaps others to

perform sealings for time and eternity.

Why? – inconvenience and expense of a journey to a temple.

On this date 1904 – 1st Pres. and Apostles withdraw

authority – and leave the keys thereof in the hands of him who

holds the keys thereof.

Can perform civil marriages

  Joseph F. Smith

  John R. Winder

  Anthon H. Lund

151. Joseph F. Smith’s Letter Book; April 21, 1905.

Sealings no where except 1st Pres. in the temple.

152. Joseph F. Smith’s Letter Book; August 17, 1905.

General advice to couples sealed out of temple is to be

re-sealed over the alter of the temple – but – first sealing is

effectual. If convenient – ought to be done.

153. Journal of Anthony Woodard Ivins; October 9, 1905.

Monday Oct. 9/05 Special Priesthood Meeting Opening exercises. . . . Pres. Smith. A Bishops Court is not an open

court. . . . Patriarchs are extravagant in their promises to the

people. Keep within legitimate bounds and be careful that promises made are dictated by the Lord. Do not quench the spirit of the Lord & do not neglect to impress upon the mind of

the recipient that the fulfulmant [sic] of the promises depends

upon their own faithfulness. Recommends to the temple should

not be given by Bishops except they and their Counselors know

that he is a worthy man. Suicides or murders should not receive

temple ordinances.

154. Joseph F. Smith’s Letter Book; April 1906.

Secret orders – if a member of not to get temple endowments.

155. Joseph F. Smith’s Letter Book; August 24, 1906.

Man sealed out of the temple lawful and valid.

But “the order of the Priesthood requires that its ordinances shall be performed in a temple — whenever the circumstances

of the people are such that they can erect a temple!!

156. George F. Richards Journal; CHO/MS/f/600/#4.

Thursday, 7 April 1921

I attended and spoke at the 8 am. temple meeting. Attended

regular council meeting from 10 am. to about 5 P.M. except the

adjournment to lunch and while I was marrying a number of

couples and sealing some couples. At our council meeting it was

decided that the old form of ordaining be used in the Temple and

elsewhere. It was also decided that we disorganize the temple

choir at once. A decision was also made that the Twelve Disciples held the apostleship i.e. we so believe.

Friday, 8 April 1921

Attended the temple meeting as usual and after the meeting

Elder Jos. F. Smith and I met with the temple choir members,

thanked them for their faithful services of the past and

released them with our blessing. Congregational singing will be

engaged in exclusively. Bro [illegible] will continue to lead

without [illegible] after this month and Sister Davis will

continue to be the organist. By instructions from the First

Presidency given yesterday while in Council meeting. I instructed the brethren of the temple to eliminate from the

ceremony of ordination (“We confer upon you the holy Melchesidek

[sic] Priesthood”) insisted by order of Pres. Jos. F. Smith. 

The old form is to be made uniform.

Tuesday, 12 April 1921

We led our first temple without a choir this morning. Am

working with Bro. D M McAllister on records trying to get

uniformity of ordinances, decisions & with a view to having the

Presidency pass on our suggestions and have them go out to all

the temples.

Saturday, 10 December 1921

I went to the temple and worked at my desk until about 4

P.M. I have been for some time correlating rules and decisions

by appointment of the First Presidency to be considered and

approved for guidelines of all temple presidents.

Tuesday, 27 December 1921

. . . I went to my office and to the temple and did some

work on compilations of decisions & rulings and have them ready

to submit to Bro. McAllister for inspection before presenting to

the Committee & then to the Presidency. They comprise 25 pages

foolscap size pages.

Wednesday, 28 December 1921

I turned papers over to D.M. McAllister to go over decisions proposed by me for use in all the temples—

Saturday, 3 June 1922

I took 7:20 car for my work at the temple. This day I went

before the Presidency and presented to them an important change

in the endowment ceremony by which the robes should be placed on

the left shoulder first and then changed to the right shoulder

once only before entering the Terrestrial room; also that

Aaronic and Melchizedek be used instead of lower order of the

Melchizedek and higher order of the Aaronic. I am to come back

with a definite recommend of the Presidency of the Temple. This

or my own suggestion. Other members not accessible today.

Wednesday, 7 June 1922

I attended to my duties as usual at the Temple. I had 33

marriages solemnized. I filled an appointment made with the

Presidency other brethren being present as follows: Jos.

Fielding Smith, Albert W. Davis, Duncan M. McAllister, Willard

Young, Israel Call & Patriarch Hyrum G. Smith.

I presented the suggestions of a change in the order of

robing and in the wording of the ordinances and lecture which

were by vote approved. This order is to place the robe on the

left shoulder at that point in the Telestial room when formerly

it was placed on the right shoulder, and change on to the right

shoulder at that point in the ceremony in the Telestial room

where at present it is changed on to the left shoulder–There

will be no other changing of the robes. The ceremonies and

Lecture will be changed to conform. Full explanation will be

given in Temple Historical Record. This will clarify some

matters which at present are obscure and will shorten the


157. Memorandum Entry; President George F. Richards; Salt Lake

Temple President; June 7, 1922. The excerpt below is from a 16

page compilation of entries by George F. Richards, President of

the Salt Lake Temple. Andy Ehat received the 16 page compilation from the descendants of the family. This typescript is an

exact copy of the one which appears in the 16 page compilation.




to APRIL 30, 1937.

……. G E O R G E  F .  R I C H A R D S …….

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –



CEREMONY: Taken from the minutes of a meeting at the office of the First Presidency. Presidents Grant, Penrose and Ivins being present. I represented having discussed with associates in the temple the advisability of instituting a change in the procedure of placing the Endowment Robes on the individuals receiving endowments the present method being to first place the robe on the right shoulder, subsequently change it to the left shoulder, and later again back to the right shoulder. The proposed change would be to place the robe first on the Left shoulder, and retain it there until after the Second Token of the Aaronic Priesthood has been given, then to change it to the Right shoulder, in conformity with the giving of the Tokens of the Melchizedek Priesthood, thus obviating one of the changes heretofore made, and more effectively indicating transition from the lower to the higher orders of the Priesthood.

After considering carefully the proposed change, the Presidency decided unanimously that from that time on the Robe

should first be placed on the Left shoulder, and be changed to the Right shoulder at the time the Endowment candidates are going to enter the Terrestrial World room. The necessary changes in the text, to conform with this decision, are to be made in the new books of rules, etc. that are to be issued to the Temple Presidents.

(Announced to Temple workers in meeting held 14 Aug. 1922)

158. George F. Richards Journal; CHO/MS/f/600/#4; Wednesday, 30

August 1922.

From printed booklet, “Instructions to Temple Workers,” by

Geo. F. Richards, President, Salt Lake Temple, Approved by the

First Presidency, 26 October, 1922.

“Brethren and sisters who have been set apart as regular

temple workers may have access, while in the temple, to the

books containing the ceremonies, but neither the books nor a

transcript there from should be taken away from the Temple.”

Thursday, 31 August 1922

. . . Attended the regular weekly Council of the Twelve and

Presidency where the Temple ordinances and rulings were considered as a final consideration and the books were put into the

hands of Bro. D.M. McAllister to be written up for all the

temples. This is a great relief to me. I have been engaged on

this work for months.

159. George F. Richards Journal; CHO/MS/f/600/#4; President,

Salt Lake Temple, “Instructions to Temple Workers”; October 26,


Cleanliness is next to Godliness and in the House of the

Lord that principle must be strictly observed. This applies

alike to both person and apparel.

Workers may wear their shoes into the Temple but they

should be kept polished and clean from dust and mud. In the

ante-room to the Annex will be found materials which may be used

for this purpose when necessary.

Those who come to the Temple for ordinance work should

remove their shoes from their feet before entering the Temple. 

A checking room has been provided where, without charge, shoes,

wraps, and valuables should be checked to avoid losses through

mistake or otherwise.

People coming to the Temple to witness sealings should be

ushered into the reception room next to the sealing room where

they may be comfortable while waiting. They should not enter

the celestial room, except where it becomes necessary in order

to sign their names as witnesses.

Persons going through for Endowments may wear white

house-slippers instead of moccasins when desired, but where this

is done, the slippers should be kept clean the same as the other

part of the Temple clothing. Where moccasins are used, white

house-slippers may be used over the moccasins if desired. * * *

Hats must not be worn in the Temple. Men should remove

their hats before entering the Annex. We would be pleased if

the sisters would observe the same rule.

160. George F. Richards Journal; CHO/MS/f/600/#4; Saturday, 14

April 1923.

I spent 1-1/2 hours with the Presidency where I read to

them the ceremonies connected with the giving of the 1st and 2nd

lectures of the Aaronic Priesthood as I had written them after

hearing them repeated and after I had revised them. I asked if

all the ceremonies could not be written, revised and approved

and go into the Presidents’ Book held only by the Temple

Presidents. The Presidency were all present and thought favor-

ably of by these. The matter is to be submitted to the Council

of the First Presidency, the Twelve & Patriarch. This would

give us a standard to go by that these ceremonies might be kept


The subject of the garment was again brought up and

considered and certain changes thought favorably of. The

permisibility [sic] of dispensing with the collar, using buttons

instead of strings, using the closed crotch and flop, and for

the women wearing elbow sleaves [sic] and leg length legs just

below the knee.

I spent about seven hours at the temple–President E. J.

Wood was given a full set of Temple books to take home with him

to Cardston for the Temple. [illegible] change.

Monday, 16 April 1923

  I spent at the temple writing what has heretofore been

unwritten ceremonies of the temple. My son George assisted me

all the afternoon.

Tuesday, 17 April 1923

I spent at the Temple busy at my desk and meeting callers,

answering questions. Pres Jos F. Smith & Albert M. Cavis, my

assistants read and approved the form of ceremonies which I have

been preparing.

Thursday, 19 April 1923

I was the speaker at the temple this morning, prayed at the

altar in Council–Our Council meeting lasted from 10 am. to

about 4 p.m. I read in the council meeting which is known as the

unwritten ordinances of the temple prepared by me and it was

decided to have copies made and one each entered inside the

Presidents’ Book of each Temple.

Friday, 20 April 1923

. . . I spent some time with the Presidency and Bishopric

considering improvements to be made at the temple. It was left

in the hands of the Bishopric & Presidency of the Temple.

I had the unwritten ordinances of the Endowments typed

today by Bro. Jos. Anderson under the direction of Duncan M.

McAllister. This is done by the authority of the First Presidency. A copy is to be kept in the Presidents’ Book at each


Saturday, 12 July 1924

. . . When pouring over the Temple Ceremonies alone and

with a committee appointed to consider them with me I usually

mention [in this journal] that I have been working at my desk or

in the Temple, yet in time great changes have evolved which as a

whole may not be mentioned by me in my journal. Of that

character of work I can say that since I became the President of

the Salt Lake Temple we have re-written those temple ceremonies

and ordinances which have been heretofore written, first at the

time of the Dedication of the St. George Temple, and have put

them into leather back covers as loose leaves and provided each

Temple President with a copy. Later those ceremonies known as

unwritten ceremonies i.e. the covenants and the instructions

given in forming the circle and at the veil, were written and

copies furnished on loose leaf sheets for the Presidents of

Temples Book. A list of 83 rules and decisions have been

written also for the guidance of Temple Presidents supplanting

all former rules not in full harmony. Each of the Temple

Presidents has been supplied with copies, or rather, they were

included in the Books when they first sent out to the Temple


The Temple Committee have gone over the ceremonies of the

Endowments with a view to more perfectly put them in proper form

and we are still working on them and I am in hope that in due

time these will be considered by the Presidency and as far as is

right the suggestions will be approved and the ceremonies be

re-written having all the written ceremonies appear in their

most perfected form and regular order in the Presidents’ Books

and in the past books. I am delighted with what has been done

thus far and am hopeful that the future will see the other

changes made which are very much needed. As these things

originated on my recommendations and I have had more to do with

them than any body else. I feel that I have had [an] important

part in the splendid accomplishment which the saints generally

know not of. I have felt that since I have been called to

preside here in the Temple that if I should live and labor here

acceptably to the Lord, He would use me as an instrument in

advancing the work in these lives and I believe he has thus

blessed me, and used me. The First Presidency could not be

expected to be in touch with all the details of Temple work &

with the needed changes only as these things are brought to

their attention and who should do this if not the Apostle in

charge of the Salt Lake & Leading Temple of the church. The

first committee appointed on this work consisted of in order of

seniority, Geo. F. Richards, David O. McKay, Jos. Fielding

Smith, Stephen L. Richards and John A. Widtsoe. Since David O.

McKay is away, in Europe, Bro. James E. Talmage has been

appointed a member of that committee.

Pres. A. W. Ivins has been appointed to go over the work

with the Committee before it is presented to the Presidency. To

date we have had two sittings with Pres. Ivins.

A small sheepskin binding book is kept in my desk which

shows progress of the work at the Salt Lake Temple since I

became President. This book gives valuable information but is

not as complete as I could wish.

Thursday, 9 December 1926

Attended temple meeting at 8:15 am. and the Weekly Council

meeting at 10:00 am. the latter continued until about 5 P.M. We

had under consideration a revision of the Temple ordinances. 

The question of Retribution took considerable time. I had

battery put in charge.

Thursday, 16 December 1926

Attended to my regular duties at the Temple as usual- 

Attended a meeting of the Twelve from 9 to 10 o’clock and a

meeting of the Presidency and Twelve from 10:am. to about 3:PM. 

This was a very important meeting. At this meeting the Report

of the Committee of Apostles on Temple Ordinances was accepted

with a few minor changes. This necessitates the printing of the

Ceremonies for all the Temples. It is helpful to have these

ready for the beginning of the New Year.

Tuesday, 25 January 1927

I went to the Temple as usual. Pres. Grant called me over

to his office and the First Presidency then decided several

important points pertaining to the Temple ordinances making a

finish of the work which has been under consideration of a

committee of five of the Twelve for several years. These points

today decided will be reported to the Council for their approval

next Thursday.

Thursday, 27 January 1927

. . . At the Council meeting the last of the committees’

recommendations concerning the endowment ceremonies was ap-

proved. There remains to have them written for all the temples.

Tuesday, 15 February 1927

  February 15, 1927

Pres. St. George Temple

St. George, Utah

Dear Brother:

We have the Temple ordinances written into the books for

the Presidents of Temples and are preparing the Part books and

will get them to you in the near future, or at conference time.

At request of President Grant we have already adopted some

of the changes decided upon, and it will be in order for you to

do the same.

In sealing for the dead, whether one or both be dead, omit

the kissing. Omit from the prayer in the circle all references

to avenging the blood of the Prophets.

Omit from the ordinance and lecture all reference to

retribution. This last change can be made with a day’s notice

to those taking parts that contain such reference.

This letter is written with the approval of the Presidency.

  Sincerely your brother

  /s/ Geo. F. Richards

161. Historical Department–Confidential Research Files,

1950–1974; Church Archives Vault; Restricted Document; CR/100/

14/#2/V.10: p.70; David O. McKay, 17 Jan. 1955 Pesega, Samoa. 

Microfilm reel 15, in Archives section.

I think I heard your spokesman say something about a

temple, or was I mistaken? Well, when I see what you have

accomplished since I was here thirty-four years ago, I am pretty

sure that sometime in the near future somewhere in the South

Seas, convenient to you, there may be a temple. And this much

too, I will tell you, on this sacred occasion, the time has

arrived in the history of the Church when temples will be taken

to the people so that faithful members of the Church may receive

all the blessings of the Church and remain in their own environment to complete family lives, to be associated with those whom

they love and without sacrificing their life’s savings to go to

the House of the Lord and receive all the blessings that any

other member of the Church may have.

162. Continuing the Quest, by Hugh B. Brown, p. 38; 1961 ed.

Now we meet in the temple that the activities of the

seminar may be sealed by the Holy Spirit so that we more

effectively carry on our work. Here we will not only lay aside

the clothing of the street, but the thoughts of the street, and

will try not only to clothe our bodies in clean white linen but

our minds in purity of thought.

163. Temple Ceremonies — Notes; Compiled by Lauritz G.

Petersen; 17 February 1971.

Lectures given in the Nauvoo Temple were not given as part

of the ceremony. After members had received their endowments,

they were called together into an assembly room and lectures

were given there. This may or may not have been the same day of

receiving the endowment.

The endowment record kept by the First Council of Seventy

deals only with those who have received their washings and

anointings. The record gives the new name, the present name of

the members, together with date and place of birth. In some

instances there were ordinations to the Melchizedek Priesthood

performed and they too are recorded. The Seventy did not record

the other part of the endowment.

The record gives who were assigned to perform the washing

and anointing. As mentioned above, the name of the person being

washed is given, with his birthdate, the priesthood he held, his

wife’s name and her birthdate, time session began, to the

minute, and the time session ended.

Time spent washing and anointing male 15 persons, one hour

and 10 minutes.

Time spent washing and anointing female 12 persons, one

hour and 50 minutes.

Another group spent 45 minutes washing and anointing 17

male, and one hour and 20 minutes with 24 female.

*Complete endowment, washing and anointing and endowment, 6

hours, 30 minutes. Time spent differs with the number of those

doing the washing and anointing. For the male department, they

had 2 washing and 3 anointing. Another interesting item is that

members were called to come for their endowments. Also the men,

Peter, presiding at the veils called the names of those present,

when to come to the veil. This agrees with the sermon given the

28th of December 1845 in the temple.

*Everyone started with the washing and the anointing and

went straight through to the complete endowment. There was no

break for lunch.

The lectures gave a much better explanation of the meaning

and use of the new name, etc.

An item of interest is that there were no garments given in

the Kirtland Temple during the washing and anointings. Garments

are not mentioned until in Nauvoo.

164. “Temples–The Gates to Heaven”; Elder Marion G. Romney,

Council of the Twelve; the Ensign, pp. 12-16; March, 1971.

Pondering upon the subject of temples and the means there

in provided to enable us to ascend into heaven brings to mind

the lesson of Jacob’s dream. You will recall that in the

twenty-eighth chapter of Genesis there is an account of his

return to the land of his father to seek a wife from among his

own people. When Jacob traveled from Beersheba toward Haran, he

had a dream in which he saw himself on the earth at the foot of

a ladder that reached to heaven where the Lord stood above it. 

He beheld angels ascending and descending thereon, and Jacob

realized that the covenants he made with the Lord there were the

rungs on the ladder that he himself would have to climb in order

to obtain the promised blessings–blessings that would entitle

him to enter heaven and associate with the Lord.

Because he had met the Lord and entered into covenants with

him there, Jacob considered the site so sacred that he named the

place Bethel, a contraction of Beth-Elohim, which means literally “the house of the Lord.” He said of it: “. . . this is none

other but the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.”

(Gen 28:17)

165. “House of Glory”; address by Truman G. Madsen, Ten Stake

Fireside, p. 7; March 5, 1972. This statement was made by Pres.

McKay at a meeting in Los Angeles to encourage contributions

towards the L.A. Temple.

Brothers and sisters, I believe there are few, even temple

workers, who comprehend the full meaning and power of the temple

endowment. Seen for what it is, it is the step-by-step ascent

into the eternal Presence. If our young people could but

glimpse it, it would be the most powerful spiritual motivation

of their lives.

166. October Conference, 1972; Spencer W. Kimball; the Ensign,

p. 34; December 1972.

Joseph Smith bestowed upon the Twelve apostles all the keys

and authority and power that he himself possessed and that he

had received from the Lord. He gave unto them every endowment,

every washing and anointing, and administered unto them the

sealing ordinances.

167. Doctrinal New Testament Commentary, Vol 1:248-249; First

Edition; Elder Bruce R. McConkie; 1973.

After people are converted and have the gift of the Holy

Ghost to enlighten their minds it is time enough for them to

learn the deeper things pertaining to exaltation in the eternal

worlds. The sacred teachings revealed in temple ordinances, for

instance, are mysteries reserved for selected and faithful

members of the kingdom who have attained sufficient stability

and background to understand them.

168. Doctrinal New Testament Commentary, Vol 1:400; First

Edition; Elder Bruce R. McConkie; 1973.

It appears that Peter, James, and John received their own

endowments while on the mountain. (Doctrines of Salvation, Vol

2:165) Peter says that while there, they “received from God the

Father honour and glory,” seemingly bearing out this conclusion. It also appears that it was while on the mount that they

received the more sure word of prophecy, it then being revealed

to them that they were sealed up unto eternal life. (2 Peter

1:16-19; D&C 131:5)

169. Huntsville, AL Stake Conference; Elder Vaughn J. Feather-

stone quoted by J. Boyd Eskridge; 24 April 1982.

I promise you that all who faithfully attend to temple work

will be blessed beyond measure. Your families will draw closer

to the Lord, unseen Angels will watch over your loved ones when

Satanic forces tempt them, the veil will be thin, and great

spiritual experiences will distill upon this people.

170. Alabama Mission Zone Conference; Elder Vaughn J. Feather-

stone; 4 May 1982.

I promise you that if you are faithful in your temple work

that there will be angels there to protect you and your children

in your time of need.