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Prince’s Research Excerpts: Temples & Mormonism – 1864

Below you will find Prince’s research excerpts titled, “Temples, 1864.” You can view other years here.

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TEMPLES, 1864.

1864:  before 9 Jan.:  Man and wife sealed in Parowan.

“On the 9th of January 1864, I entered into the Celestial order of marriage by having Mary B. Bolanz sealed to me in the Endowment House in Salt Lake City.  Apostle Wilford Woodruff officiating, my first wife having been sealed to me in Parowan, George A. Smith officiating, also in the Endowment House, Salt Lake City, Danile H. Wells officiating.”  (William Adams autobiography, LC Collection)

12 Jan.:  Removed garments prior to execution.

“At Eleven oclok I Called at the prision & was with the prisioner untill a few moments before his Execution. . . . He felt to Confess all of his [crimes]  and ask the forgiveness of God & all men for all his Crimes.  He had worn his garments up to within an hour before his death.  I advised him to take it off which He did.”  (Wilford Woodruff diary, 12 Jan., 1864)

17 Feb.:  No sealing outside Endowment House.

“Elder Henry Jennings,

Rockville, Washington County, Utah

Dear Brother:–

There is no sealing done outside the endowment house in this city.  Should you wish to take another wife, you will have to come here with a recommend from your bishop.

Your brother in the gospel,

Brigham Young”

(Brigham Young letter book, 17 Feb., 1864)

24 May:  Linkage between polygamy and exaltation?

“Presidet Young said while speaking of the doctrin of the Plurality of wives that there were but few Elders in this Church that would receive the Exhaltation they were looking for.  It would save a good many more women than men.  There are but few men that Enter into it that keep the Law.”  (Wilford Woodruff diary, 24 May, 1864)

4 Jun.:  Endowment House baptismal font dedicated.

“At the Close of the sealings all the above Named persons repaired to the Font & we there dedicated the Baptismal Font unto god for Baptisms for the remission of sins for the Healing of the sick & for Baptism for the dead.  President Brigham Young was mouth & he named in his Prayer every thing from the foundation to the Top, and He said the He felt that the Lord Accepted the Dedication.”  (Wilford Woodruff diary, 4 Jun., 1864)

11 Jun.:  Aaronic portion of endowment.

“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 given the brethren their endowments, we are obliged to confer upon them the Melchisedec 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.  The brethren receive their endowments, and you know there are some persons who will not apostatize till the arrive at a certain point.  Some apostatize at the Missouri river, and although they may be ever so angry, they will come here to get prepared to leave us; and others will live here a score of years, and then apostatize, and it does appear as if some men were determined to prove that they are fools.”  (Brigham Young, 11 Jun., 1864, JD 10:309)

3 Oct.:  The part of Satan in the endowment. 

“Bishop __ Miller, I have worked (since we commenced in Nauvoo,) in the endowments.  and once in a while I need new clothes to work in.  I want the good saints of Provo, and Springville to get me up six and a half yards of nice blue and dark mixed Jeans for a coat and pants for the old fellow to act in: I do not ask them to give the cloth unless they have a mind to, for I shall send you a hundred or more Almanacs to pay for the cloth.  It needs about 5 years of common cotton cloth for lining.  Now if the Brethren respond to this call, the “old fellow himself” will always be ready to reward his friends with what thw world never knows. . . . W. W. Phelps.”  (W. W. Phelps to Bishop Miller, 3 Oct., 1864.  See Bergera notes)

“6-B-a-1: Photograph of a letter from W. W. Phelps to Bishop Miler; Salt Lake City, Utah, October 3, 1864; concerning the need of W. W. Phelps for temple clothes to work in.  He asked the saints in Provo to supply the ‘old fellow’ temple clothes to ‘act in.’  He intended to pay for them with almanacs.  Handwritten.  2 pp.”  (The Wilford C. Wood Collection, Volume I:  An annotated catalog of documentary-type materials in the Wilford C. Wood Collection; by LaMar C. Berrett.  Published by the Wilford C. Wood Foundation, Printed by the Brigham Young University Printing Service, September 1972.)

6 Nov.:  Returned missionaries not to lay aside garments.

“There is one thing I wish to say to the Elders, who have returned from their fields of labor, do not for your own sakes, lay aside the garments of the Priesthood, and think your missions at an end; for have we not enlisted, to build up the Kingdom of God on the earth, and establish truth and righteousness, and is not this the work of a life-time?”  (Brigham Young, 6 Nov., 1864; JD 10:354)

6 Nov.:  What it means to become kings.

“There is a peculiar trait in the character of the Kingdom of God, that is diverse from all other kingdoms that have, do, or will exist; and the king we have enlisted to serve is different from all other kings; for he wishes all those over whom he reigns, to share with him the glory of his Kingdom.  He is our elder brother, and we are children of the same Great Father.  ‘And, if children, then heirs: heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together,’ when ‘he hath made us kings and priests unto God, and his Father.’  The king whom we serve, has promised to make all who overcome the world, the flesh and the devil, kings like unto himself.  What king, besides the Lord of glory, has made such a promise to his subjects?  Not only will the faithful and worthy subjects of the Kingdom of God, become kings: but more; each one will become a king of kings, and lord of lords.

A few words in explanation of this may not be amiss.  When the Holy Priesthood, which is after the order of the Son of God, is upon the earth, and its organizations, ordinances, gospel, powers, authorities and blessings, are enjoyed by the children of men; then by means of sealing powers and keys, and an everlasting covenant, the sons of men become the sons of God by regeneration, and are entitled, every man in his order, to the privileges, exaltations, principalities and powers, kingdoms and thrones, which are held and enjoyed, by the Great Father of our race; and all these are obtained through the law of natural increase, and the saving of that which the Father puts in our power.

‘Three years previous to the death of Adam, he called Seth, Enos, Cainan, Mahalaleel, Jared, Enoch, and Methuselah, who were all High Priests, with the residue of his posterity who were righteous, into the valley of Adam-ondi-ahman, and there bestowed uon them his last blessing.  And the Lord appeared unto them, and they rose up and blessed Adam, and called him Michael, the Prince, the Arch-angel.  And the Lord administered comfort unto Adam, and said unto him; I have set thee to be at the head–a multitude of nations shall come of thee, and thou art a prince over them forever.’  So, in like manner, every faithful son of God, becomes, as it were, Adam to the race that springs from his loins, when they are embraced in the covenants and blessings of the Holy Priesthood; and in the lapse of eternity, and in the progress of eternal lives, every true son of God becomes a king of kings, and a lord of lords, and it may also be said of him as it was written of Jesus Christ, ‘Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end.’

When death ends the reign of an earthly King, he is stripped of his regal power, which gives place to the habiliments of the tomb; and another wears the crown he wore, sits upon the throne he occupied, and rules over the kingdom he ruled.  No so with the sons of God, when they are crowned and receive their kingdoms; for they have embraced the everlasting Gospel, and have been regenerated, and sanctified throuigh its institutions, purified through the grave, and raised again by the power of the resurrection, to newness of life, as it is written, ‘but is now made manifest, by the appearing of our Savior Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality, to light through the Gospel.’  We have not yet receive our kingdoms, neither will we, until we have finished our work on the earth, passed through the ordeals, are brought up by the power of the resurrection, and are crowned with glory and eternal lives.  Then he that has overcome and is found worthy, will be made a king of kings, and lord of lords over his own posterity, or in other words: A father of fathers.  This latter rendering, is more strictly in accordance with the original text.”  (Brigham Young, 6 Nov., 1864; JD 10:354-355)

15 Nov.:  Reminiscence of Kirtland Temple dedication.

“The foundation of the Kirtland Temple was laid in 1833, and there is scarcely a scrap of history relating to it to be found, not even the names of the twenty-four Elders in their order who laid the foundation of it.  When the Temple was completed there was a great manifestation of power.  The brethren gathered together to its dedication.  We considered it a very large building.  Some nine hundred and sixty could be seated, and there would be room for a few to stand, the congregation was swelled to a little over a thousand persons at the time of the dedication.  It was a trial of faith.  The Elders from every part of the country had come together.  The finishing of the Temple had involved a debt of many thousands, and we all came together to the dedication.  The congregation was so large that we could not all get in; and when the house was full, then, of course, the doors were closed, and no more admitted.  This caused Elder Frazier Eaton, who had paid seven hundred dollars towards building the house, to apostatize, because he did not get there early enough to the meeting.  When the dedication prayer was read by Joseph, it was read from a printed copy.  This was a great trial of faith to many.  ‘How can it be that the prophet should read a prayer?’  What an awful trial it was, for the Prophet to read a prayer!  The service of the dedication being over, it was repeated again on the next day, to accommodate those who had not been able to get in on the first day, and all those who had been there on the first day, excepting the authorities, being required to remain outside, till those who could not get in the day before were seated; the result of this arrangement was two days dedication.

The question has often arisen among us, why it is that we do not see more angels, have more visions, that we do not see greater and more manifestations of power.  Any of the brethren that were there could have heard testimonies of manifestations in abundance.

On the first day of the dedication, President Frederick G. Williams, one of the Council of the Prophet, and who occupied the upper pulpit, bore testimony that the Savior, dressed in his vesture without seam, came into the stand and accepted of the dedication of the house, that he saw him, and gave a description of his clothing and all things pertaining to it.  That evening there was a collection of Elders, Priests, Teachers and Deacons, etc., amounting to four hundred and sixteen, gathered in the house; there were great manifestations of power, such as speaking in tongues, seeing visions, administration of angels.  Many individuals bore testimony that they saw angels, and David Whitmer bore testimony that he saw three angels passing up the south aisle, and there came a shock on the house like the sound of a mighty rushing wind, and almost every man in the house arose, and hundreds of them were speaking in tongues, prophecying or declaring visions, almost with one voice.

The question arises, where are those men? a number of them who manifested the greatest gifts, and had the greatest manifestations have fallen out by the way side, you look around among us and they are not here.  Many who received the knowledge of the things of God by the power of his spirit, and sought not after signs and wonders, and when the spirit rested upon them seemed to produce no visible demonstration, you look around among the Saints in the valleys of the mountains, and you find they are here with us bearing on high the standard of Zion, or have descended into honorable graves.  But where you find men who have turned away, and have got terribly afflicted with self conceit, you will find those, who, on that occasion and similar occasions, received great and powerful manifestations, and when the spirit cam on them it seemed to distort the countenance, and caused them to make tremendous efforts in some instances.  Sylvester Smith bore testimony of seeing the hosts of heaven and the horsemen.  In his exertion and excietment it seemed as though he would jump through the ceiling.”  (George A. Smith, 15 Nov., 1864; JD 11:9-10)

11 Dec.:  More endowments ahead?

“We know that this kingdom will continue to spread and to increase. Who can deprive us of that knowledge?  No earthly influence or power, or reasoning can do it; hence, we are perfectly satisfied in relation to these things.  And while we know this is taking place and that a reign of righteousness will be introduced that will be calculated to exalt and ennoble the human family, and make the earth a paradise and to blossom as the rose, and make the wilderness and desolate places glad, and the government and kingdom of God exist from the rivers to the ends of the earth; whilst we are attending to these things, we are also attending to other things, we are securing to ourselves an everlasting exaltation, we are learning God and His laws, and the whisperings of His Spirit, whereby we can be saved and exalted and be brought to a closer union and connection with Him by covenants and ordinances, and anointings, and endowments, and blessings, that He is revealing and unfolding.  We are learning to build temples where we can receive instruction, and revelation, and ordinances to be performed both for the living and the dead, for ourselves, progenitors, and posterity, and bless the human family throughout, that we may be saviors on Mount Zion and the kingdom be the Lord’s.  We are learning to secure for ourselves mansions with our heavenly Father, that where He is we may be also.  Jesus said, ‘I go away; but if I go, I will come and receive you to myself, that where I am there you may be also,’ &c.  We are preparing ourselves for those mansions, and others are helping to prepare mansions for us who are behind the veil.  We shall operate for those who are there, and they for us; for they, without us, cannot be made perfect, nor we without them.  We are forming an alliance, a union, a connection, with those that are behind the veil, and they are forming a union and connection with us; and while we are living here, we are preparing to live hereafter, and laying a foundation for this in the celestial kingdom of God.”  (John Taylor, JD 11:27, 11 Dec., 1864)