100 years ago today - May 25, 1919

At a Salt Lake temple testimony meeting, several report that during the recent weeks they saw Heber J. Grant transfigured into the appearance of the deceased Joseph F. Smith.

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

125 years ago today - May 25, 1894

First Counselor George Q. Cannon, at the request of President Wilford Woodruff, signs a recommend for a post-manifesto plural marriage for Hattie Merrill, daughter of Apostle Marriner W. Merrill, president of the Logan Temple, and and John W. Barnett. The marriage is solemnized in the Logan Temple on Jul 16.

125 years ago today - May 25, 1894

[Apostle Heber J. Grant Diary]
I do not know how to be thankful anough for the change that has come to the people in plural marriage, for the better. When I think of how I had to visit [his plural wife] Gusta, when she was in Provo at the time Mary was born and also before that event and that I can now have liberties which I hardly dared hope for, my heart is full and running over with thanks to my Father in Heaven for His goodness to and mine.

[Diary of Heber J. Grant, http://amzn.to/newmormonstudies]

130 years ago today - May 25, 1889

Wilford Woodruff writes to George Terry (Shoshone chief and Mormon Elder): "We fully expect that the Lamanites . . . will receive many manifestations in the last days . . . It is probable that they will receive the ministrations of perhaps the three Nephites.... But the description which you give to the narration of these Indians who have seen these supernatural things, does not inspire us with much confidence. Great care has to be taken not to allow a wrong spirit to prevail among those people for their tendency, as we understand, is to accept alleged supernatural manifestations with a great deal of credulity." Terry had written Woodruff that "the Lord is working amongst them and has sent heavenly messengers, and that great events are about to take place."

160 years ago today - May 25, 1859

- "Major Carleton, of the first dragoons. In a despatch to the assistant adjutant-general at San Francisco, dated Mountain Meadows, May 25, 1859, he says: 'A Pah Ute chief of the Santa Clara band, named Jackson, who was one of the attacking party, and had a brother slain by the emigrants from their corral by the spring, says that orders came down in a letter from Brigham Young that the emigrants were to be killed; and a chief of the Pah Utes, named Touche, now living on the Virgin River, told me that a letter from Brigham Young to the same effect was brought down to the Virgin River band by a man named Huntingdon.' A copy of the major's despatch will be found in the Hand-book of Mormonism, 67-9. Cradlebaugh says that after the attack had been made, one of the Indians declared that a white man came to their camp with written orders from Brigham to 'go and help to whip the emigrants.' "

["History of Utah," p. 561; Exploring Mormonism: Mountain Meadows Massacre Timeline, http://www.exploringmormonism.com/mountain-meadows-massacre-timeline/]

175 years ago today - May 25, 1844

Joseph learns that two indictments have been sworn out against him. William Law has charged Joseph with polygamy; Robert D. Foster and Joseph H. Jackson have charged him with false swearing. The high council in Nauvoo begins its counterattack against those attacking the character of Joseph Smith. They publish the sworn testimony of four Nauvoo women who claim that "Chauncey L. Higbee had brought about their ruin by deceit" by seducing them with the supposed approval and authorization of Joseph Smith. "The character of Chauncey L. Higbee is so infamous, and his exertions such as to destroy every principle of righteousness, that forbearance is no longer a virtue." Sidney Rigdon resigns the office of postmaster of Nauvoo and recommends Joseph Smith as his successor. (Apparently Joseph had been pressuring Sidney to resign ever since their disagreement the previous year in which Joseph charged him with corresponding and conspiring with John C. Bennett against Joseph. He had also suspected Sidney, as postmaster, of reading—and not delivering—some of Joseph's personal mail.)

[Conkling, Christopher J., Joseph Smith Chronology]

200 years ago today - May 25, 1819

The Weekly Visitor publishes about Cochran and his concepts of Spiritual Wifery

[Exploring Mormonism: Polygamy Timeline, http://www.exploringmormonism.com/polygamy-timeline/]

20 years ago today - May 24, 1999

Launch of Church-sponsored genealogy Web site (www.familysearch.org); site receives approximately 8. million hits per day.

[Sherry Baker: Mormon Media History Timeline: 1827-2007, http://byustudies.byu.edu/showTitle.aspx?title=7984]

30 years ago today - May 24, 1989

Political terrorists kill Elders Jeffrey B. Ball and Todd R. Wilson in La Paz, Bolivia. They are first LDS missionaries to be killed for political reasons. FBI agent Mike McPheters, formerly LDS missionary in Bolivia, receives Bolivian national medal of honor for his successful investigation of Ball-Wilson murders.

75 years ago today - May 24, 1944

During World War II, the Church announces that it will restrict the calling of military-age men as bishops, freeing many for service in the war.

[The Woodland Institute 'On This Day Historical Database,' http://www.woodlandinstitute.com]

85 years ago today - May 24, 1934

[President Heber J. Grant Diary]
After lunch we read the communication from President Rudger Clawson making a recommendation by the Twelve that Elders should be ordained Seventies before they go on missions. We approved of their recommendation. The letter was also signed by Elder J. Golden Kimball. The proposition is that the Elders shall be trained a full year or more before they are called on missions, and made Seventies before they go.

[Diary of Heber J. Grant, http://amzn.to/newmormonstudies]

90 years ago today - May 24, 1929

[Joseph Fielding Smith]
Received long (38 pages) letter'rather insolent, from O K Meservy of St. Anthony in which he defended his views of 'pre-Adamites' and other foolish notions.

[Joseph Fielding Smith Diary, as quoted in Minutes of the Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1910-1951, Privately Published, Salt Lake City, Utah 2010]

115 years ago today - May 24, 1904 (Tuesday)

The Baptists in convention assembled at Cleveland, Ohio passed a resolution denouncing "Mormonism" and demanding the removal of Senator [apostle] Reed Smoot.

[Jenson, Andrew, Church Chronology]

140 years ago today - May 24, 1879

Apostles Brigham Young, Jr. and George Q. Cannon, as editors of DESERET NEWS, write concerning astrology: "It is quite probable that some planets exert a baneful and others a beneficial power on the earth and its inhabitants."

145 years ago today - May 24, 1874

[Brigham Young Sermon]
Brigham Young asked if members in school would live united order, two objected and were removed from school. -- Salt Lake City

[School of the Prophets Minutes as quoted in The Complete Discourses of Brigham Young, Ed. Richard S. Van Wagoner, Smith-Pettit Foundation, Salt Lake City (2009), http://bit.ly/BY-discourses]

155 years ago today - May 24, 1864

[Brigham Young Sermon]
President Young said while speaking of the doctrine of the Plurality of wives that there were but few Elders in this Church that would receive the exaltation 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.

[The Complete Discourses of Brigham Young, Ed. Richard S. Van Wagoner, Smith-Pettit Foundation, Salt Lake City (2009), http://bit.ly/BY-discourses]

May 24, 1844

After Joseph Smith recounted his first vision experience to Neibaur, he continued and "told about Mr Wm [William] Law--wisht to be Married to his Wife [Jane] for Eternity[.] Mr Smith said [he] would Inquire of the Lord, Answered ["]no["] because Law was a Adultereous person."

Later, when William was not at home, Joseph reported that Jane invited him in, "she drawing her Arms around him [Joseph, said "]if you wont seal me to my husband Seal myself unto you.["] he Said ["]stand away["] & pushing her Gently aside giving her a denial & going out. when Mr Law came home he Inquired who had been in his Absence. she said no one but Br Joseph, he then demanded what had[pass[ed.] Mrs L[aw] then told Joseph wandet [wanted] her to be Married to him".

[Journal of Alexander Neibaur, 24 May 1844, Church Archives, image available at https://eadview.lds.org/findingaid/viewer/archive/?is_rtl=false&is_mobile=false&dps_dvs=1415235011308~767&dps_pid=IE2250344#page/26/mode/1up]

175 years ago today - May 24, 1844

[Alexander Neibaur First Vision account]
... Br[other] Joseph tolt us the first call he had a Revival Meeting his Mother & Br[other] & Sist[er] got Religion, he wanted to get Religion too wanted to feel & sho shout like the Rest but could feel nothing, opened his Bible f the first Passage that struck him was if any man lack Wisdom let him ask of God who giveth to all men liberallity & upbraidat not [James 1:5] went into the Wood to pray kneelt himself down his tongue was closet cleavet to his roof--could utter not a word, felt easier after a while--saw a fire towards heaven came near & nearer saw a personage in the fire light complexion blue eyes a piece of white cloth drawn over his shoulders his right arm bear after a wile a other person came to the side of the first Mr Smith then asked must I join the Methodist Church--No--they are not my People, sl [they] have gone astray there is none that doeth good no not one, but this is my Beloved son harken ye him, the fire drew nigher Rested upon the tree enveloped him [p. 1] [page torn] comforted Indeavoured to arise but felt uncomen feeble--got into the house told the Methodist priest, said this was not a age for God to Reveal himself in Vision Revelation has ceased with the New Testament. . . .

[Alexander Neibaur, Journal, 24 May 1844, LDS Church Archives, Salt Lake City, Utah., as cited in Dan Vogel, Early Mormon Documents: Joseph Smith Recital To Alexander Neibaur]

30 years ago today - May 23, 1989

The First Presidency's office completes documents which give Counselors Gordon B. Hinckley and Thomas S. Monson power of attorney for church president Ezra Taft Benson, which "shall not be affected by [his] disability" or "incompetance." The church president does not sign these legal documents which are instead "signed" by a signature machine in the First Presidency's office. The identical signature of Ezra Taft Benson also appears on a similar document, dated 25 Feb. 1993, and also filed with the state of Utah. Although the Presidency's office uses its AUTO-PEN machine to create the church president's signature on correspondence, missionary calls, and other routine documents, this use of signature machine for legal documents (especially power-of-attorney) is unprecedented. Disclosure of this by the Salt Lake Tribune fuels speculation that Benson is already in mental decline by 1989.

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

70 years ago today - May 23, 1949

[Ezra Taft Benson]
elected a member of the National Executive Board of the Boy Scouts of America.

[Wikipedia entry: Ezra Taft Benson]