40 years ago today - Jun 18, 1978-Sunday

[Leonard Arrington]
For a part of the trip, Gil [Warner] was able to sit next to Brother Packer. Gil asked him if he could share some of the experiences which led up to the announcement of the revelation on the priesthood for blacks. Brother Packer said he could share part of the experience, part of it he could not share. Brother Packer said President [Spencer W.] Kimball had felt it necessary to petition the Lord on this matter. And so, for the past two months he has gone daily to an upper room in the temple to pray specifically for that purpose. On the morning of Thursday, June 1, he decided to share some of his impressions with the Twelve [apostles]. He asked them, in advance, to fast for the purpose. He and they then spent some time discussing the problem in its various aspects. At a certain point in the discussion, President Kimball then asked if he might give a prayer on behalf of the group. So he went to the altar and prayed earnestly to the Lord. At a certain point in the prayer, Elder Packer stated, all present became aware of what the decision must be. He did not say what happened; this is no doubt the part which he was forbidden to tell. But there was some kind of manifestation, presumably which was plain to all those present. As Brother Packer referred to this he sobbed-something which he does not commonly do. Obviously, it was a tender experience. President Kimball finished the prayer. Then Elder [Ezra Taft] Benson said: "We all are aware of what has happened. Now what should we do about it?" President [Marion G.] Romney spoke up and said, "Let's take a week to formulate a statement to announce it to the other general authorities and to the Church." So in the subsequent week the statement which appeared in the papers was drawn up. Presumably it was read to the Twelve in their June 8 meeting. It was then read to all the general authorities. The authorities were then asked to comment on it, one by one. When every single one of them indicated their approval, it was then announced to the media, and to the Church as a whole. [[The announcement was later published in the LDS Doctrine 32 Covenants as "Of- ficial Declaration 2." It states that God "heard our prayers, and by revelation has confirmed that the long-promised day has come when every faithful, worthy man in the Church may receive the holy priesthood, with power to exercise its divine authority, and enjoy with his loved ones every blessing that flows therefrom, including the blessings of the temple."]] In the Priesthood meeting, when Brother Warner had finished telling this, Bill Pulsipher said that on the morning of June 9 he was meeting in a board of directors meeting with Elder Paul Dunn. Elder Dunn was late for the meeting, and as he came in, it was obvious that he had been crying. He then took a few moments to tell the group what had taken place. He emphasized that all at the meeting of the general authorities were certain that this was a revelation from the Lord. ...

[Source: Confessions of a Mormon historian : the diaries of Leonard J. Arrington, 1971-1997, Gary James Bergera, editor, Signature Books, 2018]

45 years ago today - Jun 18, 1973-Monday

[Leonard Arrington]
Michael Quinn came in this afternoon to say that he had received a definite offer from the graduate school at Yale University ..... We all agreed that it is desirable for him and for us that he pursue the Ph.D. at Yale. It will add prestige to our division and department and will put him in line some day to become Assistant Church Historian. ...

[Source: Confessions of a Mormon historian : the diaries of Leonard J. Arrington, 1971-1997, Gary James Bergera, editor, Signature Books, 2018]

85 years ago today - Jun 18, 1933

Nazi Party newspaper in Berlin publishes "Juden und Mormonen," which chritcizes Germans for belonging to LDS church which has "always been very friendly with Jews."

Church Section of the Deseret News, prints "official First Presidency statement" by J. Reuben Clark on John Taylor's 1886 revelation on polygamy: "the archives of the Church contain no such revelation; nor any evidence justifying a belief that any such revelation was ever given. From the personal knowledge of some of us, from the uniform and common recollection of the presiding quorums of the Church, from the absence in the Church Archives of any evidence whatsoever justifying any belief that such a revelation was given, we are justified in affirming that no such revelation exists." Clark's statement proves to be incorrect on virtually every point. Though church leaders did not have the original revelation, they owned the copy which John W. Taylor had given Wilford Woodruff in 1887. Furthermore, Heber J. Grant was in attendance at the 22 February 1911 Quorum of the Twelve meeting when the 1886 revelation was discussed and entered into the minutes.

115 years ago today - Jun 18, 1903

[Joseph F. Smith letter]
From the inquiries you make in relation to recommending for [a] second anointing, we take it for granted that you yourself have not received your second blessings. If we are correct we suggest that you receive these blessings in your own behalf before recommending others to receive them, and we extend the same invitation to your counselors. Please therefore make out recommends in favor of yourself and wife or wives, and the same for your counselors and their wives, and we will take pleasure in signing them.

[Source: Joseph F. Smith, John R. Winder, and Anthon H. Lund to Alonzo A. Hinckley, June 18, 1903, in Anderson, Devery; The Development of LDS Temple Worship, 1846-2000: A Documentary History, http://amzn.to/TempleWorship]

115 years ago today - Jun 18, 1903; Thursday

The subject of plural marriage was touched upon by President Smith, he bearing testimony to the fact that it was revealed to the Church and practiced by Joseph Smith; also that the endowments as given today, were revealed to the Prophet Joseph. These things, the speaker said, were also testified to by others, and particularly by Sister Bathsheba W. Smith, who said that she was a living witness of these things, she having received her endowments under the administration of the Prophet Joseph himself. ...

[Source: First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve minutes]

130 years ago today - Jun 18, 1888

[Marriner W. Merrill]
My son Marriner was released from the penitentiary today. Came home, met a grand reception, 140 persons took supper with him.

[Source: Notes from the Miscellaneous Record Book, 1886-1906: Selected diary notes from the journal books of Marriner Wood Merrill, http://amzn.to/newmormonstudies]

130 years ago today - Jun 18, 1888

L. John Nuttall records: "It was a very warm day today. I have felt warm all through me and heavily oppressed. I was forced to take off my garments-they being woollen were too warm. I did not feel able to work. . . . I walked out this evening. Mrs. Caine let me have a pair of Bro. Caines light garments which I put on."

[Source: On This Day in Mormon History, http://onthisdayinmormonhistory.blogspot.com]

175 years ago today - Jun 18, 1843, Sunday

[William Clayton]
On the night of June 18, 1843, Clayton was visiting at the home of a Sister Booth, along with Ruth and her sister, Margaret {who had only recently become his first plural wife}. Suddenly William F. Cahoon rushed in, telling Clayton that Hyrum Smith wanted to see him at the temple immediately. Another writ was out for Joseph's arrest, but he was away with his wife and family, visiting Emma's sister, Elizabeth Wasson, who lived near Dixon. Clayton rushed to the temple where Hyrum met him and asked him to ride to Dixon immediately to warn Joseph. Clayton borrowed $120 for the trip, persuaded Stephen markham to go with him, and rode swiftly out of town at midnight on Joseph Smith's favorite horse, Joe Duncan. The two riders covered the 190 miles in sixty-four hours, with very little rest along the way. It is not suprising that Joe Duncan was do jaded at the end of the trip that he could not be ridden for several days.

[Source: Fillerup, Robert C., compiler; William Clayton Nauvoo Diaries and Personal Writings, A chronological compilation of the personal writings of William Clayton while he was a resident of Nauvoo, Illinois. http://www.boap.org/LDS/Early-Saints/clayton-diaries]

180 years ago today - Jun 18, 1838

Hyrum and Uncle John Smith, Sampson Avard, and 83 other Mormons sign an ultimatum directed at Oliver Cowdery, David and John Whitmer, Lyman E. Johnson, and William W. Phelps, warning them to leave the county immediately lest a "fatal calamity shall befall you."

[Source: Kenney, Scott, Saints Without Halos, "Mormon History 1830-1844," http://web.archive.org/web/20120805163534/saintswithouthalos.com/dirs/d_c.phtml]

35 years ago today - Jun 17, 1983-Friday

[Leonard Arrington]
Statement submitted to 43rd edition of Who's Who:

A religious historian must be tenacious in preserving his bilinguality; he must attempt to speak with authority and excellence in addressing his professional colleagues in the language of scholarship and, in the language of faith seek to provide his fellow-communicants with another experience, another soul, new understandings of life. [[Arrington is musing over the contradictory, irreconcilable expectations of him, not that he actually sent this for submission in the Who's Who bibliographic dictionary.]]

[Source: Confessions of a Mormon historian : the diaries of Leonard J. Arrington, 1971-1997, Gary James Bergera, editor, Signature Books, 2018]

40 years ago today - Jun 17,1978

Church News headline "Interracial Marriage Discouraged" in same issue which announces authorization of priesthood for those of black African descent. Sources at church headquarters indicate that Apostle Mark E. Petersen requires this emphasis.

[Source: Quinn, D. Michael, The Mormon Hierarchy: Extensions of Power, Appendix 5, Selected Chronology of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1848-1996, http://amzn.to/extensions-power]

85 years ago today - Jun 17, 1933

The First Presidency issues its most comprehensive and legalistic statement against post-Manifesto plural marriage and specifically denies the legitimacy of claims that John Taylor had an 1886 revelation on plural marriage. This statement causes a final break between the church and its Fundamentalists, who soon become true schismatics.

[Source: The Mormon Hierarchy - Extensions of Power by D. Michael Quinn, [New Mormon History database ( http://bit.ly/NMHdatabase )]]

110 years ago today - Jun 17, 1908

[Minutes of the Seventies]
[Seymour B. Young speaking:] Thursday, the 11th, agreeable with instructions from the First Council of the Seventy placed before the Presidency of the Church the physical and mental condition of Brother George Reynolds, giving reasons why the First Council thought he ought to be sent to the Sanitarium of Portland, Oregon, the Presidency of the Church approved of his being sent and made necessary arrangements for transportation and one-half of his expenses while at the Sanitarium.

[Source: Minutes of the Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 1835-1951, Electronic Edition, Privately Published, Salt Lake City, Utah, 2015, Appendix 1: Minutes of the Seventies, 1837-1933, Excerpts]

115 years ago today - Jun 17, 1903; Friday

[Council of 70]
The General Secretary presented a condensed report of all the non-tithe payers in the Seventies Quorums of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints during the year 1901-02.

There are 143 Quorums

Twenty Quorums reported having no non-tithe payers.

Two Quorums failed to report.

No. non-tithe payers a/c neglect and carelessness,277

" " " " " indebtedness, 21

" " " " " Sickness and physical

disqualifications 30

" " " " " poverty, 83

" " " " " unbelief in tithing, 27

Missionaries returned home and were in debt, 18

No. that do not like manner of disbursing tithing, 10

No. of non-tithe payers disgruntled because of difficulties

existing between them and local Stake officers, 9

Bro[ther]. [B. H.] Roberts moved that the report be filed, Carried.

[Source: Excerpt from the Minutes of the First Council of the Seventy]

135 years ago today - Jun 17, 1883

Erastus Snow reported that the angel accused the Prophet of "being neglectful in the discharges of his duties [regarding polygamy]" and spoke "of Joseph having to plead on his knees before the Angel for his Life."

[Source: Erastus Snow quoted in A. Karl Larson and Katherine Miles Larson, Diary of Charles Lowell Walker, 2 Volumes, Utah State University Press, Logan, Utah, 1980, 2:611, entry for June 17, 1883, at Exploring Mormonism: Polygamy Timeline, http://www.exploringmormonism.com/polygamy-timeline/]

175 years ago today - Jun 17, 1843

[Heber C. Kimball]
Elder Snow and my self had a preshious time. On the 17[th] our minds were opened on things pertaining to our furture State. Sush as laying a good foundation fore here after and to do all things in view of Eternity. Fore all things that are only done [for] time will desolve when the body does. Tharefore our works will be veign [vain]. I feel a great Zeal this morning to press my way forward and have all things made shure fore time. O God the Eternal Father in the name of Jesus Christ of Nasreth wilth Thou fore give me all the sins that I have ever done since I have come here on this Thy foot stool, and let my heart be pure in Thy sight and my hands clean all the days I shall live in this probation, that my feet may never slip, that I may be filled with Zeal and that acording to /the/ knowledg and that knowledg that proceeds from the Father keep Thy servent from Evry veign thing, and as-sist me to be true to The[e] and to all that love Thy name that treacherry may never have a place in my heart or ever be known among my posturity. Let peas beat down upon my dear Vilate that sorrow may pass away, and pease take the seat. Let Health be and abide with them and all that belongs to me. Even so Amen.

[Source: Kimball, Stanley B. ed, On the Potter's Wheel: The Diaries of Heber C. Kimball]

180 years ago today - Jun 17, 1838

[John D. Lee]
Lee and his wife were baptized on 17 June 1838 after meeting Joseph Smith for the first time. The experience of baptism was powerful enough to cause him to dedicate his life to the Mormon Church. As part of the work of building up the Kingdom of God, Lee eventually married eighteen more women and fathered sixty children. Lee became a member of the Danites, a secret fraternal order that was pledged to defend the rights of Mormons.

[Source: Utah History Encyclopedia: John D. Lee, http://www.uen.org/utah_history_encyclopedia/]

180 years ago today - Jun 17, 1838

First Counselor Sidney Rigdon preaches his "Salt Sermon" as a warning against dissenters at Far West. Quoting the fifth chapter of Matthew ("Ye are the salt of the earth. If the salt has lost its savor, it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out and trodden under the feet of men." Matt 5:13) he explains when men embrace the gospel and afterward lose their faith, it is the duty of the Saints to trample them under their feet and calls on the people to rise en masse and rid the country of such a nuisance. Rigdon explains, "when a county, or body of people have individuals among them with whom they do not wish to associate and a public expression is taken against their remaining among them and such individuals do not remove, it is the principle of republicanism itself that gives that community a right to expel them forcibly and no law will prevent it."

175 years ago today - Jun 16, 1843

At night, Judge James Adams of Springfield sends an urgent message to Nauvoo that Gov. Ford plans to issue a writ to take Joseph back to Missouri, based on the requisition from the Missouri governor.

[Source: Conkling, Christopher J., Joseph Smith Chronology]

50 years ago today - Jun 15, 1968

One of Ezra Taft Benson's 1968 talks on government was published by the influential periodical Vital Speeches of the Day. It was republished in an academic journal.

[Source: Benson, "The Proper Role of Government," Vital Speeches 24 (15 June 1968): 514-20, also reprinted in Agricultural Engineering 49 (Aug. 1968): 469-71. From D. Michael Quinn, Ezra Taft Benson and Mormon Political Conflicts, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought 26:2 (Summer 1992), also in Quinn, The Mormon Hierarchy: Extensions of Power Salt Lake City (Signature Books, 1994), Chapter 3.]