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Gift of 
Mrs. Esther C. Thomson 








From November 1869 to June 1910 


OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

Salt Lake City, Utah 








THIS, the history of the Young Ladies' Mutual Improve- 
ment Association, is the first published history of the 
organized work of women in the Church. The brief sketch 
suggested in 1900 by May Booth Talmage has naturally and 
insistently grown into the complete record of the develop- 
ment of the organization herewith presented; and yet, the 
record tells only in outline all of the interesting and really 
wonderful work accomplished by the young women of the 
Church, in their attempts at Mutual Improvement. 

The aim of the History Committee, associated with the 
author and the Executive Board, has been to prepare a cor- 
rect, comprehensive, and inspiring history of the Mutual 
Improvement movement among the young ladies of the 
Church in all the world from its beginning until June 1st, 
1910. To attain this end the labors of the author and the 
committee have had a thieefold direction: first, to present a 
connected*story of the supervisory and directive activity of 
the organization; second, to write a series of pen-pictures of 
the women who have organized and held together the forces 
which have made the organization successful; third, to com- 
pile conscientious, though necessarily brief, histories of the 
Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement work in each of the 
sixty-two stakes of Zion. The data upon which this work is 
based have been gathered from the libraries of the Church , 
from diaries, by countless conversations and correspondence, 
from the records, but especially by correspondence with the 
present and recent Y. L. M. I. A. officers in the various 
wards and stakes of the Church. The actual writing and 


editing have been done by women busy with housekeeping- 
cares; and the contributors have likewise been hampered in 
the work by womanly limitations. These facts will explain 
many of the imperfections of the book; and we hope will tem- 
per the voice of criticism. 

Only the devotion of various members of the General 
Board has made this book possible. From the beginning, 
our great leader and president, the late Elmina S. Taylor, 
gave her devoted attention and inspired faith to the work. 
Her successor, Martha H. Tingey, has continued the work 
with the same earnestness and devotion. Ann M . Cannon has 
been a source of inspiration and strength; she has labored 
with unselfish care and indomitable courage to make this his- 
tory worthy of the great work it represents. With her 
has been associated Estelle Neff Caldwell. They must 
share the honors, if there are such, as they have shared the 
toils. The members of the executive board have been the 
constant attendants at history meetings; they, together with 
the History Committee, have likewise given much in the 
months they have spent reading the manuscript, and in sug- 
gesting and improving as the original humble plan expanded 
and developed. The History Committee were: Maria Y. 
Dougall, Augusta W. Grant, Minnie J. Snow,*May Booth 
Talmage, and, after Sister Snow's death, Estelle Neff Cald- 
well. To all these friends and helpers the book really owes 
its merit. 

Slowly, and in the face of many hindrances and amidst 
struggling heartaches, the work has taken form. The field 
was untrodden; no guides marked the way; and the day had 
many duties. But inspiration was in the labor; it fostered 
love; and the author praises God who has been her stay in 
this labor. May the unselfish loving spirit of God's work 
come to every reader of this history. 





Opportunities accorded to Mormon women. Pioneer conditions 
obtaining. Organization of the first Retrenchment Associ- 
ation, November 28th, 1869. The idea of retrenchment grows 1 



Retrenchment among the older women. Senior and Junior De- 
partments 29 



Some of their resolutions. Travels of pioneer organizers 58 



The Young Men's Mutual Improvement Association org .^- 
ized. The name Retrenchment Association changed to 
Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement Association. Stake or- 
ganizations effected. Central or General Board organized.. 80 



Its inception. Its purpose. First number issued October, 1889. 
Mrs. Susa Young Gates, editor. President Elmina S. 
Taylor carried moral responsibility. Difficulties. Assist- 
ance from members of General Board. Other friends. 
Out of troubled waters. President Taylor relieved by ap- 
pointment of committee. Editor Gates resigned. Mrs. May 
Booth Talmage her successor. Miss Ann M. Cannon suc- 
ceeded Mrs. Talmage. Miss Elen Wallace, associate editor. 
Miss Mary E. Connelly became editor. Business depart- 
ment: A. H. Cannon, Miss Estelle Neff, Miss Agnes S. 
Campbell. First office. New quarters 101 




Duties devolving upon General Board. The first Aids appoint- 
ed. First General Conference. General Conferences ap- 
pointed to be held annually. Regular sessions of the Gen- 
eral Board established. Second and third General Confer- 
ences. General^ officers' meetings. Local and stake work, 
General Conjoint Conferences 127 



The first reports. Annual dues. Traveling expenses. Perma- 
nent Fund. Dime Fund. Comparative statement of Gen- 
eral Board expenses. Labors of the different secretaries 
and treasurers. Later reports 153 



I'.arly programs in the wards; in the various stakes. A Guide 
outlining studies for all associations issued 1893. Second 
year's Guide. The associations graded. Theological stud- 
ies; Ethical; Literary. Classes for study of the Guide 177 



Inception of the National and International Councils. The Y. 
L. M. I. A. affiliated. World's Congress of Representative 
Women. Triennial and Executive Sessions. A memorable 
triennial. International Council sessions. Distinguished 
visitors entertained 198 



General Conferences and Socials. Conventions. Gymnasiums 220 


The General Board meetings. Standing committees. Tem- 
porary committees. Reports by General Board members.. 246 



Her character. Her death. The funeral services 261 





Order of procedure. A preliminary meeting. Nomination by 
the First Presidency. Reorganization in April; names pre- 
sented at June Conference, 1905 280 



Resume of the first forty years' work. A glimpse at a local 
Mutual Improvement meeting; at a stake board meeting; at 
a General Board meeting. The power behind them. The 
results 299 


Adams, Emily C.., 255 

Anderson, Jane B. . 315 

Bennett, Rosetta Wallace. . .211 

Bennion, Laura 323 

Brixen, Julia M 217 

Burton, Julia Home 77 

Caldwell, Estelle Neff 243 

Campbell, Agnes S 147 

Campbell, Joan M 195 

Cannon, Ann M 174 

Card, Zina Y 14 

Clawson, Emily Y 14 

Connelly, Mary E 257 

Dougall, Maria Y 14, 98 

Eardley, Adella W 143 

Eddington, Sarah 145 

Eldredge, Lona Pratt 75 

Empey, Ella Y 14 

Evans, Mattie Read 275 

Fox, Ruth M 290 

Freeze, Lillie T 149 

Freeze, Mary A 73 

Gates, Susa Young 121 

Goddard, Emma 209 

Grant, Augusta W 239 

Home, Martha 95 

Home. Alary Isabella 41 

Kimball, Sarah M 55 

Lovesy, Edith R 317 

McCttne, Elizabeth C 213 

Nystrom, Mae Taylor 293 

Richards, Jane S 56 

Sardoni, Elizabeth Thomas. .277 

Shipp, Flora Lydia 78 

Smith, Alice K 295 

Smith, Bathsheba W 26 

Smith, Eliza R. Snow 15 

Smith, Julina L 78 

Smith, Lucy W 312 

Smoot, Margaret T 53 

Snow, Minnie J 189 

Talmage, May Bootli 193 

Taylor, Elmina S 90 

Taylor, Margaret Y 94 

Taylor, Nellie C 253 

Teasdale, Letitia T 319 

Thatcher, Fanny Y 96 

Tingey, Martha H. . . . . . .95, 287 

Tuddenham, Alice C 274 

Wallace, Elen 259 

Wells, Emmeline B 45 

Wells, Louie 95 

Woodruff, Helen W 236 

Woodruff, Phoebe C 55 

Young, Caroline 14 

Young, Dora 14 

V oung, Phebe 14 

Young, Zina D. H 21 




Alberta 326 

Alpine 328 

Bannock 329 

Bear River 332 

Bear Lake 333 

Beaver 335 

Benson 339 

Big Horn 342 

Bingham 344 

Blackfoot 346 

Box Elder 348 

Cache 356 

Carbon 363 

Cassia 364 

Davis 365 

Davis, North 368 

Davis, South 370 

Eastern Arizona 427 

Emery 371 

Ensign 373 

Fremont 375 

Granite 378 

Hyrum 380 

Jordan *..... 383 

Juab '. 384 

Juarez 386 

Kanab 389 

Liberty 391 

Malad 394 

Maricopa 396 

Millard 399 

Morgan 401 

Nebo 403 

Ogden 405 

Oneida 409 

Panguitch 412 

Parowan 414 

Pioneer 416 

Pocatello 418 

Rigby 421 

St. George 422 

St. John's 426 

St. Joseph 430 

Salt Lake 432 

San Luis 438 

San Juan 439 

Sanpete, North 446 

Sanpete, South 441 

Sevier 448 

Snowflake 450 

Star Valley 452 

Summit 454 

Taylor 457 

Teton ..460 

Tooele 463 

Uintah 465 

Union 466 

Utah 468 

Wasatch 74 

Wayne 477 

Weber 479 

Weber, North 483 

Woodruff 485 

Yellowstone . . . .487 



Young Ladies' Mutual Im- 
provement Association. 



Opportunities accorded to Mormon women. Pioneer conditions 
obtaining. Organization of the first Retrenchment Association, 
November 28th, 1869. The idea of retrenchment grows. 

THE genesis of things is always interesting- in whatso- 
ever form it may be manifested; not only in the study 
of life itself, but also in the consideration of any expres- 
sion of human activity. Moreover, the interest is doubled 
in value, when it centers around the lives of peoples who 
are little known, and whose history reveals ideas and in- 
formation that are unusual and novel. There is much to 
attract the casual observer in all that pertains to the pecu- 
liar people called Mormons; and this interest is not least 
active in the lives and labors of the women. Why this is 
so we shall not here inquire, but the story of the influences 
which have contributed and which do now contribute to the 
condition of the women of Zion will prove of vital interest to 
themselves as well as to others. 

When advantages and opportunities have been given 
to women, as to other less favored classes, these advan- 
tages have been as a rule the result of long-continued and 
strenuous efforts on the part of the women themselves. It 
does not often happen that the men in any community take 


the initiative and offer women superior opportunities. 
When such a thing- is done in any land, it is looked upon 
as evidence of a high degree of intellectual and moral de- 
velopment. This very thing 1 , however, was done by the 
Prophet Joseph Smith in 1842, when he called the women 
together in Nauvoo, and told them the Lord had inspired 
him to organize them into a regular and duly authorized 
society, with officers, and definite yet widely elastic objects 
and aims. No prophet or reformer of ancient or modern 
times has surpassed, nay, has equaled, the Prophet Joseph 
Smith in the breadth and scope of the opportunities which he 
accorded womanhood. He possessed more genuine initiative 
than any man who has lived since the Savior. He produced 
more seed-thoughts, revealed more new truths, set in opera- 
tion more gigantic plans for the world's betterment than any 
modern man, living or dead. 

After the cruel death of their prophet and their patri- 
arch, the Mormon people were driven out into the west- 
ern deserts. They were led thither by another great man, 
Brigham Young. For twenty years the valleys of Utah 
gave the people an isolated shelter, a somewhat bare sub- 
sistence, and peace. Brigham Young well knew that the 
people could not long be hedged about by mountain- walls, 
nor barriers of isolation. The onward sweep of civilization 
would bring in its train many blessings and some pitfalls. 
The great pioneer had taught the people how to plant and 
water their sterile valley farms; how to congregate their 
homes in such form as would give them all the advantages 
of village life. He had established schools, churches, and 
social halls in the midst of the clustered houses, while the 
farming lands radiated from this center into the edges of 
the hills. He had persuaded the people to devote them- 
selves to the cultivation of the soil, the establishment of va- 
rious industries, instead of following an unstable and dan- 


gc roiis pursuit of the minerals hid in the shoulders of the 
mountains. The hum of the factory was heard in the 
land, and the multitudes of traveling California emi- 
grants found shelter, supplies and rest iii the busy villages 
enclosed by the Wasatch mountains. 

The great northwestern region of our country, to- 
gether with the golden land on the sands of the Pacific, 
began filling up rapidly during the sixties. A cry was 
sent up to Congress for aid to build a transcontinental 
railway. Brigham Young was among the first to voice 
this cry, and he took practical steps to assist the govern- 
ment in fulfilling his desires. The Mormon leaders were 
not blind to all that a sudden influx of strangers would 
mean to a people, then sheltered and at peace. They had 
lingering memories which taught them all that hatred and 
bigotry might do, if the same spirit that had once dogged 
their every step should animate those who might come. 
And far more to be dreaded than persecution was the spirit 
of folly and fashion, excitement and extravagance, which 
seems a necessary but sad accompaniment to all forms of 
high civilization. With the near approach of the steam 
horse in the year 1869, came the forerunners of its pres- 
ence. Books multiplied, but so also did saloons. Goods 
became cheaper, and the people demanded money with 
which to buy. The loom and the wheel gradually disap- 
peared. Sewing machines crept in slowly; and then the 
women subscribed for the new fashion-magazines from 
which to glean ideas how to cut their cloth and sew it up 
again in fanciful shapes. 

The true exponent of the religion of Jesus Christ will 
be deeply conscious of the principle involved in the words 
of the Savior, when, in His last recorded earthly prayer, 
He said, concerning His disciples, "And now I am no 
more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come 

4 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

to thee. * * I pray not that thou shouldest take 

them out of the world, .but that thou shouldest keep them 
from the evil. They are not of the world, even as I am 
not of the world. Sanctify them through thy truth." The 
world is all about us; and our struggle will always be, not 
to hide away from it, but to create about ourselves an at- 
mosphere so refined and pure, so simple and sincere, that 
everyone who comes within the radius of that atmosphere 
will breathe its sweet simplicity with gratitude and joy. 
This principle lay deep in the heart of the master pioneer. 
He contemplated measures that could be put in force to 
shield the people of Utah from the worldliness which the 
influx of strangers would bring at the 'completion of the 
transcontinental railroad . 

There was a host of young women growing up in 
Zion, who had been born, as we term it, "under the cove- 
nant of the Priesthood," but were not identified with the 
Relief Society. These girls had not studied the principles 
of the Gospel, as had their mothers, who had accepted the 
truth in eastern lands or in a foreign country. The daugh- 
ters of Zion were passing fair; and coupled with their sim- 
ple beauty was a freedom of demeanor, bred by the west- 
ern atmosphere. They were getting the common educa- 
tion that comes from books and schools, and most of them 
were carefully trained in the domestic virtues. But many 
there were who did not have the opportunity of studying 
the principles of the Gospel, in sequence and with intelli- 
gent application. The girls were not then sent out on 
missions, as were their 1 brothers, and so did not acquire 
that best of spiritual and intellectual training which is giv- 
en in the heaven-appointed university of missionary life. 
It is well known that Brigham Young had a very 
large family. Not all know of one striking fact connected 
with his family a statement which might be repeated of 


other large Mormon families belonging- to the men and 
women of that day that of the fifty-six children born to 
Brig-ham Young-, (ten of whom died in infancy,) not one 
was halt, lame, blind, or impaired in mental or spiritual 
powers. They were a race of hardy and rather brig-ht 
children, more full, perhaps, of life and animation than 
the average youth. Therefore they were not easy to man- 
ag-e; but all had a most profound love and esteem for 
their father. He, in turn, was extremely proud of his 
children; and when any of them showed a disposition to 
be unworthy of his trust and confidence, it was a deep 
sorrow to him. He had a strong; sense of his own personal 
obligation to the people who sustained him as their head; 
and he was wise enough to know that that responsibility 
descended to his children, however little they mig-ht under- 
stand or appreciate the fact. 

Surrounded by all these conditions, the mind of Brig-- 
ham Young- was led very strongly to form a suitable or- 
ganization among the young daughters of Zion, an organ- 
ization which should provide them with a training school, 
as it were, for their spiritual and intellectual develop- 
ment. There was under his roof a woman who was an 
officer in the first organization of women in the Church, 
Eliza R. Snow. She was quick to see the tremendous 
significance of this new departure proposed by President 
Young looking toward the advancement of her sex. She 
took up the suggestion with eagerness and intelligence. She 
was too noble to lose sight of the fact that here again the 
initiative was taken for woman's progress by a broad-minded 
and prophetic man . The details of the work were committed 
to her care, and she was urged to call to her assistance other 
noble workers among the women of the Church. 

The first meeting of the projected organization was 
called by Brigham Young on November 28, 1869, in the 

6 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

parlor of the Lion House. This meeting- is necessarily of 
great historic interest to us, and we have the advantage 
of repeating- the story as told by several who were there. 
Mrs. Bathsheba W. Smith, the wife of President Georg-e 
A. Smith, was the only woman present who was not a 
member of President Young-' s family; and her memory, 
which is clear and excellent, supplies us with the following: 


details of what occurred on that occasion. These items 
have also been verified by many of the family, who are 
still living-, and who were present. 

President Young: asked Sister Eliza R. Snow to notify 
those of his family not living- in the Lion House to assem- 
ble there on the evening* of November 28, 1869, as he had 
important matters to present to them for action. No doubt 
this matter had been thoroug-hly discussed by him and 


Sister Snow, for later events showed that there was an un- 
derstanding between them on the subject about to be pre- 
sented. Sister Snow had asked Sister Bathsheba W. Smith 
to g<> around with her to notify the families to attend the 
meeting. When, therefore, the President saw Sister Smith 
in the parlor, he said, ''I will send into the office for Brother 
George A., as he is in there now, and we will invite him to 
be present at our meeting-." Brother Smith and his wife 
were, therefore, the only visitors at this initial meeting- of 
the new organization . 

The scene in that quaint old parlor would have been 
a strange one to those not of the family. President Young- 
came in from the office through the long-, narrow, winding 
hall and from its small recess in the large hall took the 
prayer-bell, which was never molested by childish fingers. 
Eig'ht deliberate rings brought the flying feet of little chil- 
dren, followed more sedately by the quiet tread of the old- 
er ones and the mothers, into the long, low-ceiled parlor, 
warmed by the "Lady Franklin" stove and lighted by glass 
lamps. The family came and arranged themselves in their 
accustomed seats, in the substantial, comfortable wooden 
chairs made by the cabinet maker Bell, after a pattern 
designed by President Young himself. Then the hus- 
band and father sat, as was his wont, in the middle of 
the long room by the round table. Beside him was his 
loved friend and counselor, President George A. Smith, 
and on the red-velvet davenport, the seat reserved for vis- 
itors, sat Sister Smith. At his right hand was "Aunt" 
Eliza R. vSnow, with her tall, slim figure neatly and 
plainly clad, her fine old Hebrew face with its deep-set 
eyes and clear-cut, regular features composed with their 
customary serenity. Around the room were ranged the 
rest of the family, as usual. 

After the simple and usual evening prayer had been 



Among- other 

offered, the President addressed his family, 
things he said: 

All Israel are looking to my family and watching- the 
example set by my wives and children. For this reason 
I desire to organize my own family first into a society for 
the promotion of habits of order, thrift, industry, and 
charity; and, above all thing's, I desire them to retrench 
from their extravagance in dress, In eating and even in 
speech. The time has come when the sisters must agree 
to give up their follies of dress and cultivate a modest ap- 
parel, a meek deportment, and to set an example before 
the people of the world worthy of imitation. I am weary 
of the manner in which our women seek to outdo each 
other in all the foolish fashions of the world. For in- 
stance, if a sister invites her friends to visit her, she must 
have quite as many dishes as her neigfhbor spread on a 
former occasion, and indeed she must have one or two 
more in order to show how much superior her table is 
to her neigfhbor 's. This silly rivalry has induced a habit 


of extravagance in our food; it has involved fathers and 
husbands in debt, and it has made slaves of the mothers 
and daughters. It is not right. It is displeasing to the 
Lord, and the poor groan under the burden of trying to 
ape the customs of those who have more means. Then, 
again, our daughters are following the vain and foolish 
fashions of the world. I want you to set your own fash- 
ions. Let your apparel be neat and comely, and the work- 
manship of your own hands. Wear the good cloth manu- 
factured in our own mills, and cease to build up the mer- 
chant who sends your money out of the Territory for fine 
clothes made in the East. Make your garments plain, 
just to clear the ground in length, without ruffles or pan- 
niers or other foolish and useless trimmings and styles. I 
should like you to get up your own fashions, and set the 
style for all the rest of the world who desire sensible and 
comely fashions to follow. I want my daughters to learn 
to work and to do it. Not to spend their time for naught; 
for our time is all the capital God has given us, and if we 
waste that we are bankrupt indeed. 

I have long had it in my mind to organize the young 
ladies of Zion into an association so that they might assist 
the older members of the Church, their fathers and moth- 
ers, in propagating, teaching and practicing the principles 
I have been so long teaching. There is need for the young 
daughters of Israel to get a living testimony of the truth. 
Young men obtain this while on missions, but this way is 
not opened to the girls. More testimonies are obtained on 
the feet than on the knees. I wish our girls to obtain a 
knowledge of the Gospel for themselves. For this purpose 
I desire to establish this organization and want my family 
to lead out in the great work. I have always been willing 
to give my children all the advantages of education and 
schooling possible to obtain. But I want them to appreciate 
those advantages and not to squander their opportunities. 
We are about to organize a Retrenchment Association, 
which I want you all to join, and I want you to vote 
to retrench in your dress, in your tables, in your speech, 
wherein you have been guilty of silly, extravagant speeches 
and light-mindedness of thought. Retrench in everything 
that is bad and worthless, and improve in everything 

10 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

that is good and beautiful. Not to make yourselves un- 
happy, but to live so that you may be truly happy in this 
life and the life to come. 

He invited his wives to express their feelings and all 
responded. A vote was then called and the whole family 
voted to sustain the President in his new departure. Then 
Brother George A. Smith was invited to speak, and he 
bore a powerful testimony to the truth of the President's 
words. He said that if ever a man spoke by the power of 
God, President Young: had done so at this meeting. 

Some difficulty was realized in selecting the proper 
one to stand at the head of the organization, but at last 
Sister Ella Young Empey was chosen and unanimously 
sustained to act as president of the Retrenchment Associa- 
tion as it was then called. After some further talk the 
meeting was dismissed and adjourned to some time in the 
near future.* 

It would not be difficult to imagine the consternation 
of those light-hearted young" girls, who grasped at once 
the thought that to them this new movement meant no 
ruffles, no ribbons, no furbelows. All that lay in the heart 
of this movement as its deeper meaning, the uplifting, the 
growth and the spiritual and intellectual culture all this 
was overlooked by those merry, thoughtless girls, the old- 
est of them not much over twenty. The sacrifice was big 
to them; small wonder there was shrinking and doubt. 
Nevertheless, it was settled that night that a Spartan 

recollection serves me, the above account of the meeting held in the 
Lion House, November 28th, 1869, is correct, both as to details and 
the words spoken by President Young. On my leaving the room, 
he spoke a few words of blessing to me, which greatly comforted 
my heart. He said he had no fault to find with Brother George A.'s 
family as to th^ir dress. 

Salt Lake Temple, March 8, 1909 


plainness of dress was to be one of the distinguishing- marks 
of the new movement. Let us examine the stirring; but 
quaintly worded resolutions adopted: 


Subscribed to and adopted by the Young- Ladies' Depart- 
ment of the Co-operative Retrenchment Association , organ- 
ized in Salt Lake City, 1869. 

Resolved, that realizing- ourselves to be wives and 
daughters of apostles, prophets and elders of Israel, and, 
as such, that high responsibilities rest upon us, and that 
we shall be held accountable to God not only for the priv- 
ileges we inherit from our fathers, but also for the blessings 
we enjoy as Latter-day Saints, we feel to unite and co- 
operate with, and we do mutually pledge ourselves that 
we will uphold and sustain each other in doing good. 

Resolved, that inasmuch as the Saints have been com- 
manded to gather out from Babylon and not partake of her 
sins, that they may receive not of her plagues, we feel that 
we should not condescend to imitate the pride, folly and 
fashions of the world. And inasmuch as the Church of 
Jesus Christ is likened unto a city set on a hill, to be a 
beacon light to all nations, it is our duty to set examples 
for others, instead of seeking to pattern after them. 

Resolved, that we will respect ancient and modern 
apostolic instructions. St. Paul exhorted Timothy to teach 
the women to adorn themselves in modest apparel not 
with braided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; but 
to wear that which becometh \vomen professing godliness 
with good works. Peter, also, in his first epistle, in speak- 
ing of women says, "Whose adorning, let it not be that 
outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing gold, 
or of putting on of apparel; but let it be the hidden man 
of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the 
ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight 
of God of great price. For after this manner in old time 
the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned them- 
selves," etc. In a revelation given to the Saints in 1831, 
the Lord said: "Thou shalt not be proud in thy heart; let 
all thy garments be plain, and their beauty the beauty of 

12 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

the work of thine own hands." All of which we accept 
as true principles, and such as should be fully illustrated 
in our practice. 

Resolved, with a firm and settled determination to 
honor the foregoing- requirements, and being deeply sensi- 
ble of the sinful ambition and vanity in dress among the 
daughters of Zion, which are calculated to foster the pride 
of the world, and shut out the spirit of God from the heart, 
we mutually agree to exert our influence, both by precept 
and example, to suppress and eventually eradicate these 

Resolved, that, while admitting variety has its 
charms, we know that real beauty appears to greater 
advantage in a plain dress than when bedizened with 
finery; and while we disapprobate extravagance and waste, 
we would not, like the Quakers, recommend a uniform, 
but would leave each one to choose the style best adapted 
to her own taste and person. At the same time we shall 
avoid and ignore as obsolete with us all extremes which 
are opposed to good sense, or repulsive to modesty. 

Resolved, inasmuch as cleanliness is a characteristic 
of a Saint, and an imperative duty, we shall discard the 
dragging skirts, and for decency's sake those disgustingly 
short ones extending no lower than the boot tops. We 
also regard "panniers," and whatever approximates in ap- 
pearance toward the "Grecian bend," a burlesque on the 
natural beauty and dignity of the human female form, and 
will not disgrace our persons by wearing them. And also, 
as fast as it shall be expedient, we shall adopt the wearing 
of home-made articles, and exercise our united influence 
in rendering them fashionable. 






A number of meeting's were held by this society in the 
winter following the organization in the Lion House. Sev- 
eral of them were held at the home of Sister Emmeline 
Free Youngf, wife of President Young: and mother of Ella 
Y. Empey, the youthful president. She lived then in 
what was known as the Grant House, on Main street, 
exactly on the site of the present Z. C. M. I. 

Within the year 1870 the Retrenchment Associations 
were established on a firm basis, that is, as local associa" 
tions. There were branches in nearly every ward in the 
city by the close of this year, while Ogden, Logan, Provo, 
Bountiful and Brigham City were all reaching out for the 
new work; and in most of these larger towns, ward asso- 
ciations of the girls were already in operation. In some 
places these associations were organized by local authority, 
but generally speaking- they were effected under the direct 
supervision of Sister Eliza R. Snow. But this great reform 
movement among: women was not confined entirely to the 
young- girls; the mothers and wives in Israel were as much 
in need of a return to the art of simplicity, or retrenchment 
(as it was quaintly termed), as were the girls. And for this 
reason, President Young" set another engine of progress into 
active operation. He committed the cause of retrenchment 
among- the older women into the hands of an associate of 
Sister Snow. And as this other association was closely 
identified with the work of the g:irls, in the first years of 
their labors, an outline of it will be given in this book. 

14 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 


Mrs. Ella Young- Empey was born August 31, 1846. 
She was of the golden -haired, blue-eyed type, which was a 
striking feature of many of the Young- girls. In disposition 
she was sedate and thoughtful; she was, among a family 
of musicians, one of the best and most gifted. What was 
then called a "piano touch" became so well known in 
Ella, that one in a distant room knew the brilliant, rippling 
sound of Ella's fingers -on the dear old Lion House piano. 
She was married in 1865 (very early, as was the custom in 
those days) to Nelson A. Empey. They lived a devotedly 
happy life until September 7, 1890, when the wife died, 
leaving her husband desolate . 

Mrs. Emily Y. Clawson has reared a large and gifted 
family, and as the plural wife of a bishop, she has done 
well her part. Mrs. Zina Young Williams (now Card) 
has been plural wife, mother, pioneer, teacher, and .house- 
keeper. Not one of the Young girls has more faithfully 
lived up to that long ago ideal. Her sister, Mrs. Maria Y. 
Don gall, stands side by side with Mrs. Williams -Card in 
the noble life-record made. Caroline Young (Cannon) 
reared a splendid family, and still found time for Temple 
work in the last years of her life. She was president of 
the Cannon Ward Relief Society for several years. She 
died July 7, 1903. Dora Young (Hagan) has not lived in 
Utah for many years; but she is as devoted to the memory 
of her father as any daughter he ever had. Phebe Young 
(Beatie) is as lovely in character as she is in person. She 
has lived a useful life, both in public works and domestic 
duties. She is one of the General Board of the Relief 
Society at the present time. Such is the brief record of 
those pioneer officers of the Mutual Improvement work. 


Zina Y. Williams 
Emily Y. Clawson Maria Y. Dougall 

President Ella Y. Empey 

Caroline Young Phoebe Young 

Dora L, Young 



The name of Eliza R. Snow, otherwise known as 
"Z ion's poetess," is an imperishable one in the history of 
Mormonism. A sister to President Lorenzo Snow and one 
of the wives of the Prophet Joseph Smith, she stood for 
many years at the head of the entire Mormon sisterhood, 
and was the most prominent woman of her period in the 
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Gifted and ed- 
ucated, an original thinker, an able speaker and writer, she 
was also endowed with executive ability of a high order, 
which she used, with all other talents, in the promulgation 
of her religious faith, in the advancement of her sex, and, as 
far as her influence extended, for the welfare of all mankind. 
Though most of her life was sternly practical, much of it be- 
ing passed amid scenes of hardship and persecution, she 
found time to woo the poetic muse and was the author of 
poems of hig~h merit, the most famous among them being 
her sublime hymn, "O my Father," so frequently sung- in 
the sacred gatherings of the Saints.* 

*It is always vitally interesting to know something about the 
details surrounding the production of an immortal poem, a pic- 
ture or a song. And although no one thought to ask Sister Snow 
in life to recount the incidents connected with the composition of 
the famous and inspired hymn entitled "O my Father," we know 
from two of her associates, Sisters Bathsheba W. Smith and Em- 
meline B. Wells, a little of the surroundings of the poetess at this 
time. She was living in Nauvoo at the home of Stephen Markham, 
and had for her own room a tiny upstairs chamber, whose sloping 
roof was all unfinished inside, but which sheltered its inmate from 
snows and sun, while it provided a quiet retreat for occasional con- 
templation and composition. The room was severely plain in its 
furnishings, with one small window to light the dim gloom of the 
half-completed story. But the bed was exquisitely neat with its 
valance of white and its cover of snowy home-woven linen spread 
trimly over its billowing, feathery softness. The small trunk in the 
opposite corner was ample space to encompass all the worldly be- 
longings of this high priestess of the newly revealed Truth, for she 
had left her desires for worldly possessions behind her along with 
the many home comforts which had once been hers. A braided 
rug mat covered a large portion of the bare boards. Near the bed 
stood a tiny round light-stand, familiar in the olden days, on which 
stood the shining brass candlestick, and the beloved Bible and 

16 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

Eliza Roxey Snow was a native of Becket, Berkshire 
county, Massachusetts, where she was born January 21, 
1804. Her ancestors were English, but her parents were na- 
tive Americans, the father having- been born in Massachu- 
setts, the mother in Connecticut. Her father was a Revolu- 
tionary soldier. As early as 1805 the family migrated west- 
ward to Mantua, Portage county, Ohio, then a new and 
sparsely settled section. Up to this time, Eliza and an elder 
sister were the only children in the household; but at Mantua 
several brothers and other sisters were born, among them 
Lorenzo. The Snows were Baptists in religion, but were 
broad-minded and liberal to people of all denominations; and 
their hospitable home was a resort for intelligent and exem- 

Book of Mormon. This small and indispensable piece of old-time 
chamber furniture a light-stand was set at the head of the bed to 
hold the candlestick and paper lighters. If a light was necessary in 
the night, the occupant of the chamber must needs arise, and with 
more or less difficulty brush away the ashes in her own or the 
kitchen fire-place so that the paper lighter could be ignited and thus 
renew her candle light. It was in such environments that the sim- 
ple but divine words of that matchless Mormon hymnal were writ- 

An interesting sidelight is given to this time through a possible 
glimpse of the thought-kernel which grew into such fragrant bloom 
in the full-voiced poem of Sister Snow. It was told by Aunt Zina 
D. Young to the writer as to many others during her life. Father 
Huntington lost his wife under the most trying circumstances. Her 
children were left desolate. One day, when her daughter Zina was 
speaking with the Prophet Joseph Smith concerning the loss of her 
mother and her intense grief, she asked the question: 

"Will I know my mother as my mother when I get over on the 
Other Side?" 

"Certainly you will," was the instant reply of the Prophet. 
"More than that, you will meet and become acquainted with your 
eternal Mother, the wife of your Father in Heaven." 

"And have I then a Mother in Heaven?" exclaimed the aston- 
ished girl. 

"You assuredly have. How could a Father claim His title un- 
less there were also a Mother to share that parenthood?" 

It was about this time that Sister Snow learned the same glo- 
rious truth from the same inspired lips, and at once she was moved 
to express her own great joy and gratitude in the moving words of 
the hymn, "O my Father," which includes the pregnant couplet: 

"Truth is reason; truth eternal 
Tells me I've a mother there." 



plary spirits of various persuasions. The parents instilled 
morality into the minds of their children and trained them to 
habits of industry and economy, at the same time extending 
to them the best available facilities for scholastic culture. 

Eliza was carefully educated in intellectual as well as do- 
mestic pursuits. She began her literary career when quite 
young, winning high repute in the surrounding region by 
her poetic productions. At the age of twenty-two she was 
solicited through the press to write a requiem for John Adams 
and Thomas Jefferson, whose simultaneous deaths on the 
birthday anniversary of the nation afforded a theme well 
suited to the lofty and patriotic spirit which characterized her 
muse. The poem was written and published. With its 
appearance the young and gifted author found the portals 
of fame opening to her, with promises of a brilliant future. 
This prospect she sacrificed, with many other hopes which 
seemed precious, upon the altar of her religious convictions. 

With her poetic temperament, she possessed a lofty and 
profound spiritual nature. The sacred and siiblime poetry 
of the Bible was her delight. She loved the Scriptures and 
the society of scriptorians, scholars and men of learning and 
eloquence. Among her early acquaintances was Alexander 
Campbell, for whom the Campbellite sect was named; also 
Sidney Rigdon, a fellow-founder of that denomination, who 
was afterwards associated with the Prophet Joseph Smith. 

Eliza R. Snow was initiated into the Church of Jesus 
Christ of Latter-day Saints April 5th, 1833. Her mother 
and her elder sister had previously connected themselves 
with the Church and had visited Kirtland, its headquarters, 
not many miles from Mantua. It was through their favor- 
able representations that Eliza was induced to make an in- 
vestigation of Mormonism. In the autumn of the year of her 
baptism, she left her father's home and took up her resi- 
dence at Kirtland, where she taught the family school" of the 
Prophet, and boarded in his household. Subsequently she 
had a house of her own, which she shared with her sister, a 
widow with two children. Her father also embraced the 
faith, and it was not long' before the entire family was set- 
tled at Kirtland. 

Late in April, 1838, they started with a small company 
for Far West, Missouri, to which point the Latter-day Saints 

18 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

were then migrating-. Arriving- there on the 16th of July, 
Eliza remained for a time nursing her sick brother, Lorenzo, 
who was prostrated with bilious fever, and then rejoined her 
parents at Adam-Ondi-Ahman in the ad joining county. There 
the family purchased two homesteads, with farm crops, and 
settled; but, in the mob troubles that soon arose, they were 
forcibly dispossessed of this property and compelled to leave the 
county within ten days. Upon their departure, and even 
while they were preparing to go, the former owner of the 
premises coolly took possession of the home from which they 
were driven. It was a bitter cold day December 10, 1838 
when the Snow family left Diahman, which was occupied 
by the mob forces. 

After assisting to load the wagons, Sister Eliza went 
ahead of the teams to warm her feet by walking. A Missou- 
rian approached and addressed her tauntingly: 

"I think this will cure you of your faith." 

"No, sir," replied the undaunted woman, with firm em- 
phasis, and looking him straight in the eye, "it will take 
more than this to cure me of my faith." 

The man's countenance fell. 

"Well, I must confess you are a better soldier than I 
am," said he, slinking away. 

The homeless family, after a brief stay at Far West, 
participated in the enforced exodus of the Saints from Mis- 
souri. Their wintry wanderings past, they found them- 
selves, in March, 1839, with the main body of their people, 
at Quincy, Illinois. Thence they proceeded to Warren 
county and next to La Harpe. Eventually they settled with 
the Saints at Nauvoo. 

There Eliza taught school, wrote for the press, both in 
poetry and prose, and began to rise in prominence in the 
Church. She was present, March 17, 1842, when the Prophet 
organized the now famous Relief Society, of which she was 
the original secretary. The date of her marriage to Joseph 
Smith was June 29, 1842. She had no children, but was 
destined to be a mother to the women of her people. Wid- 
owed by the Prophet's martyrdom, in June, 1844, and pros- 
trated with grief for her murdered husband, she besought 
the Lord that she might follow him speedily to the spirit 
world, The Prophet appeared to her in vision, administer- 


ing- strength and consolation. She rose up in all the dig- 
nity of a prophetess to continue her mission, consecrating 
herself more fully than ever to the great cause for which 
Joseph had died. Her long record as a Temple worker be- 
gan at Nauvoo, where she administered in sacred ordinances 
for hundreds of her sex. 

In the exodus of February, 1846, while driving an ox 
team tow r ards the Missouri river, she wrote songs to comfort 
and encourage her exiled co-religionists in their weary pil- 
grim-age to the Rocky Mountains. At Winter Quarters, a 
siege of chills and fever, superinduced by the many hard- 
ships and exposures to which she had been subjected, 
brought her almost to the brink of the grave. At the close 
of the year came the tidings of her mother's death at Walnut 
Grove, Illinois, where her father had died the year previous. 
She began the journey across the plains in June, 1847, in 
one of the first companies that followed in the wake of the 
pioneers, and the month of October found her a resident of 
the colony in Salt Lake Valley. 

She was provided with a home by President Brigham 
Young and from that time until her death remained a member 
of his household. When the Endowment House was dedicated 
as a temporary Temple for the Saints, May, 1855, she was 
placed in charge of the sisters' work therein, and held the 
sacred office then conferred upon her as long as ordinance 
work was performed in the Endowment House. In 1866 she 
was called by President Young to assist the bishops in or- 
ganizing ward Relief Societies throughotit the Church, 
which in her time increased to three hundred branches. In 
that position she labored continuously for twenty-one years. 

A notable event of her experience was her trip to Pales- 
tine as a member of President George A. Smith's party, 
which included also her brother, Lorenzo, then one of the 
Twelve Apostles. The object in view was the dedication of 
the Holy Land for the return of the Jews; one of the great 
events contemplated by Mormonism. Leaving home on the 
26th of October, 1872, she sailed with her party from New 
York on the 5th of November. After seeing the sights of 
London, they passed over to Belgium, and thence through 
France, calling upon M. Thiers, president of the French 
republic, at Versailles. They journeyed through the prin- 

20 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

cipal cities of Italy, crossed over to Alexandria, and late in 
February, 1873, landed at Jaffa, the first sea-port of Pal- 
estine. The beginning of March found them in Jerusalem, 
and on the second day of the month, which was Sunday, they 
ascended the Mount of Olives, and there held sacred services, 
accomplishing- the purpose of their mission. They then com- 
pleted their tour of the Holy Land, occupying in all about a 
month, during which Sister Eliza, then in her seventieth 
year, slept in a tent, rode on the donkeys, and endured the 
journey quite as well as the youngest and most vigorous of 
the party. They returned by way of Constantinople, and at 
Athens took tea with the American minister. After visiting 
the World's Fair at Vienna, they set out for England. About 
the last of May they sailed for home, arriving there in 

Invigorated in mind and body, Sister Eliza entered with 
renewed zeal and devotion upon the discharge of her mani- 
fold duties. She traveled north and south through the set- 
tlements, holding meetings and addressing the sisters in 
many places, organizing and setting in order the women's 
associations. But she figured not only in public, counseling 
and instructing with wisdom and eloquence, but also, in the 
homes of the poor and the needy, and at the bedside of the 
sick and dying, she was an angel of hope and consolation. 
Probably her most noted public speech was at the great mass 
meeting of the Mormon women, held at the old Tabernacle, 
Salt Lake City, in January, 1870, to protest against the Cul- 
lom anti-polygamy bill, then pending in Congress. In No- 
vember, 1878, she presided at a similar meeting held in the 
Salt Lake Theatre, for the purpose of answering allegations 
of the newly-organized Anti-Polygamy Society. 

As early as 1856, Sister Eliza published her first volume 
of poems, embodying religious, historical and political themes. 
Twenty years later she prepared a second volume of poems 
for the press, and assisted in the preparation and publication 
of Tullidge's "Women of Mormondom." Other literary 
works of hers were: "Correspondence of Palestine Tourists," 
"The Biography and Family Record of Lorenzo Snow," and 
a hymn book, tune book, and first and second Speakers for use 
in the children's Primary Associations. Sister Snow assisted 
in organizing these associations throughout the settlements. 


She was the leader in this movement, as in the Y. L. M. I. A. 

Among various prominent positions occupied by this in- 
defatigable worker in Zion's interests were those of superin- 
tendent of the Women's Store, (a commission house for 
Utah-made goods, opened in the Constitution Building', Salt 
Lake City, in the fall of 1876), and president of the Deseret 
Hospital, established by the Mormon women and dedicated 
July 17, 1882. June 19th, 1880, at a meeting- held in the 
Salt Lake Assembly Hall, she had been formally set apart 
by President John Taylor to preside over the Latter-day 
Saints' women's organizations in all the world, Zina D. H. 
Young being her first counselor and Elizabeth Ann Whitney 
her second counselor; Sarah M. Kimball was secretary and 
Mary Isabella Home, treasurer. 

Sister Eliza's death occurred on December 5th, 1887, 
when, full of years and ripe wisdom, and honored and be- 
loved wherever known, she passed peacefully to her rest in 
the paradise of God . She was given a public funeral at the 
Assembly Hall, and her remains were entombed in President 
Young's private burying ground. 

Most closely associated with Sister Snow was another 
wife of the Prophet Joseph Smith, and also, later, the wife 
of Brigham Young. Zina D. Young was the anti-type to 
Sister Snow. Some spoke of the two as the head and the 
heart of the women's work in Utah. Sister Snow was keen- 
ly intellectual, and she led by force of that intelligence. Sis- 
ter Zina was all love and sympathy, and drew people after 
her by reason of that tenderness. It is well to consider them 
together in this work, for so they labored in Mutual Im- 
provement work side by side. 


There have been many noble women, some great wom- 
en and a multitude of good women associated, past and pres- 
ent, with the Latter-Day work. But of them all none was so 
lovely, so lovable, and so passionately beloved as was "Aunt 
Zina." To be sure the explanation seems simple, but it 
only "seems," for it is anything but simple to live the per- 
fect Christian life which was lived by this saintly woman for 
over eighty years. 

22 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

Atmt Zina was a perfect example of the teaching's of 
Paul in the 13th chapter of I Corinthians; yet with all her 
tenderness and exquisite delicacy of motive and act, there 
was a sturdy strength about her which made up the heroic 
part of her character. She was extremely quick in her per- 
ceptions, and was keenly conscious of malicious conduct or 
slighting treatment; but her nobility prevented her from re- 
senting- ill-treatment, and she was ready to forgive long- be- 
fore asked to do so. 

It is related of her that on one occasion she was told that 
a certain woman did not like her. Aunt Zina looked quietly 
into the eyes of her informer and said, with simple dignity 
and sincerity: 

"Well, I love her, Sister, and she can't help herself." 

It is an established fact that, almost without exception, 
the founders of the Mormon Church were descendants of the 
founders of the American nation, and it is a pleasing- task to 
study the genealogical history of the men and women who 
have, under God, laid the foundations of this Church. 

Zina Hunting-ton Young- was descended from a line of 
distinguished ancestry. Lady Salina Hunting-ton, who came 
from one branch of the family, was the daughter of the Earl 
of Ferrars, and a co-laborer of the famous reformer, Wesley. 
The pedigree of this family and that of Georg-e Washington, 
the first American, meet in the same parentage, a few gener- 
ations before either of these distinguished personages was 
born. The mother of Aunt Zina was a Dimock, and she 
was of the family of Sir Edward Dymock, Knight, Champion 
to Queen Elizabeth. The Dymocks were hereditary holders 
of this title for several generations. 

Aunt Zina's father was one of the patriots who served 
in the war of 1812. Samuel Huntington, one of the signers 
of the Declaration of Independence, was the uncle of this 
stout and gallant soldier. Her own father was descended di- 
rectly from Simon Huntington, the Puritan immigrant who 
sailed for America in 1633, but on the way died of small-pox. 
His wife and little children settled in Roxbury, and were 
under the direct charge of the famous pastor, John Elliot. 
Her paternal grandmother was a Lathrop, of the Black River 
valley, New York. 

Aunt Zina was born Jan. 31st, 1821, at Watertown. 



and she was baptized into the Church by the Patriarch Hy- 
rum Smith, August 14, 1835. Young as she was, she re- 
ceived, during this year at Kirtland, the two beautiful gifts 
which never afterwards left her: that of speaking in tongues 
and of interpretation of tongues. She was a member of the 
Kirtland Temple choir, and began, even in her youth, the 
work of her life the teaching of the young. She was emi- 
nently fitted to be a teacher. She not only had the gift of 
imparting information from the modest store of book-learn- 
ing which she possessed, but she had that higher, rarer gift 
of imparting the inspiration of her own high ideals and char- 
acter to the youth who were under her care. 

She was married in her youth and had two fine boys, 
Zebulon and Chariton Jacobs; but the union was not a happy 
one, and she subsequently separated from her husband. She 
was married in the order of celestial marriage to the Prophet 
Joseph Smith, for time and eternity. After the martyrdom 
of the Prophet, she accepted the offer of a home under the 
roof of President Young, and was married to him for time. 
She had one child to Brigham Young, a daughter, Zina, 
who is a worthy representative of a spiritual and sainted 

Aunt Zina's mother died during the persecutions in 
Missouri, and the family were all so ill that only two of the 
number could attend the funeral. Her father died, also a 
martyr, at the camp of Pisgah, after the Saints were driven 
from Nauvoo. The Saints at this time were in the most 
terrible straits. Deaths were so frequent that it was diffi- 
cult to find well ones who could bury the dead. Many were 
buried with split logs at the bottom of the graves, while the 
sides were lined with brush hastily cut from the roadside. It 
was at this time that Father Huntington was taken sick, and 
died in eighteen days. 

Aunt Zina went to Winter Quarters after the death of 
her father; and she crossed the plains in 1848, with her hus- 
band's family, walking, driving team, cooking beside the 
camp-fire, and sharing, nay, bearing far more than her part 
of the burdens of the journey. She was an expert bread- 
maker, and her salt-rising would come up when all the oth- 
ers were dead and cold. No one will ever know how little of 
her own provisions she ate , and how much she gave to others 

24 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

less favored than herself. After arriving in Salt Lake Val- 
ley, she lived first in the Old Fort, then in the "Log Row," a 
short distance north of the Eagle Gate, and later with the 
other members of the family moved in 1856 into the famous 
Lion House. 

Aunt Zina taught school for many years, for there must 
be schools, and the men were all busy with the strenuous 
pioneer labors in canyon and field. She began teaching in 
Nauvoo; next, she had a noisy, yet merry, school in Winter 
Quarters, and finally opened a small class in her own small 
room in the Log Fort. After the Lion House was built and 
teachers multiplied, she turned her attention' to other philan- 
thropic labors, for her spirit was far too active and her capac- 
ity too great to make her satisfied with the small compass of 
her own four walls. She walked the difficult path of public 
trust, side by side with Eliza R. Snow. 

When the Relief Society was reorganized in Utah by 
Brigham Young, Aunt. Zina was chosen as treasurer. 
Later, when the general organization was completed, she was 
the first counselor to Sister Eliza R. Snow. This office she 
held until the death of Sister Snow, when she was elected 
the president of that historic society, and she continued in 
that office till her own death, on the 28th of August, 1902. 
She was thus, for ten years, Elect Lady of the Church, and 
no more beautiful soul ever occupied that exalted position. 

She was chosen in the early seventies by Brigham 
Young to take up the "mission" of establishing silk-culture 
in the Territory, and to her death she was faithful to the trust 
then imposed upon her. To hear her modest story of the 
suffering she endured in silence , while working on the silk 
farm established by President Young in the suburbs of the 
city, was to hear what real heroism means. She was afflict- 
ed with a mortal terror of worms, having a birth mark in 
the palm of her hand in the shape of a curled-up worm. But 
when she was called upon to take up the work in sericulture, 
she told no one of her affliction, but resolved that she would 
conquer her terror, if she died of heart-failure in the attempt. 
And conquer, to an extent, she did. She fed and took care 
of millions of worms, and although there were months that 
her dreams were nightmare remembrances of her daily horror, 
she never faltered. She lived to see the silk industry fos- 


tered and made comparatively successful through legislative 
enactment. And she wore, for many years, home-made silk 
dresses as her best attire. 

In no other line of work and effort was Aunt Zina better 
known and more appreciated than in her ministrations to the 
sick and dying in the household of faith. She was an angel 
of hope and faith to thousands and thousands of the Latter- 
day Saints. Who has not seen the heavenly comfort and 
faith beaming from her eye as she knelt over the sick or 
soothed the mourner! In those early days, whose child was 
not nursed back to health, or robed for its last long sleep by 
the tender hands of this angelic woman! What household 
was not made better, purer, holier far, because of the pres- 
ence of this saintly woman and womanly saint! 

She was early educated in the simple mysteries of obstet- 
rics by a visiting physician to the Territory of Utah, and ever 
after she was called from her home, in season and out of 
season, to preside as high priestess at the altar of birth. She 
heard the birth-cry of more children than any other woman 
in Utah. And, withal, she bore three and reared a large 
family of her husband's children. 

She was the soul of generosity, and yet not lavish; she 
was forgiving to a fault, and still she always knew when peo- 
ple assailed her. She was eloquent, and had a personal 
magnetism which attracted the merest stranger instantly to 
her side. She was sweetly proud, and her soul was filled 
with an exquisite dignity. 

She labored for years as a high priestess, first in the En- 
dowment House, and then in the Salt Lake Temple, where 
she presided among the women workers to the day of her 

It is with her work in the Mutual Improvement Associa- 
tion that this history is chiefly concerned, and Aunt Zina's 
work in that direction is co-equal with the labors of Sister 
Eliza R. Snow. Together they traveled, Sister Snow's ring- 
ing challenge penetrating into the very depths of the girls' 
minds and brains, while Aunt Zina's loving appeal sank 
into their hearts and distilled upon their souls like the dews 
upon the thirsty hills around their valley homes. They trav- 
eled thousands and thousands of miles, mostly in carriages 
or wagons, holding two and sometimes four meetings a day, 

26 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

organizing branches of the Retrenchment or Mutual Im- 
provement Associations, meeting with the Relief Societies, 
"preaching up" silk, or the loyal support of home industry; 
securing subscribers to the Woman s Exponent; urging the 
women and the girls to study well their responsibilities, as 
mothers, wives and daughters. Then, one meeting dis- 
missed, the same audience would assemble while these two 
orators and organizers would call a session of the Suffrage 
Society, or, perhaps, a meeting of the children's Primary 
Associations. And in this taxing and yet glorious life this 
woman, these women, lived, labored, suffered, and passed to 
their rewards. God enrich their memory to all the readers 
of this history! 


Mrs. Bathsheba W. Smith is the fourth general presi- 
dent of the Woman's Relief Society, and is herself a remark- 
able woman. She was born May 3, 1822, in West Virginia, 
and is the daughter of Mark Bigler and Susannah Ogden. 
She was reared in a well-to-do southern family, and had all 
the advantages attendant upon such conditions. She was an 
accomplished horsewoman in her youth, and to this fact may 
be attributed some of her remarkable vigor and comeliness in 
this the far evening of her life. She sacrificed much to join 
the unpopular religion of Christ, and she brought with her to 
Nauvoo all her inherited love of refinement and womanly 
dignity, while not forgetting the industry and frugality which 
so characterized the early life of the founders of this Ameri- 
can nation. She was married to George A. Smith, a cousin 
of the Prophet Joseph Smith, in Nauvoo, on July 25, 1842. 
Mrs. Smith was very soon an intimate friend of the Prophet's 
family, and she was as much attracted by the unusual 
strength and brilliancy of his wife, Emma Hale Smith, as 
she was by the majesty and power of the great Prophet him- 
self. Mrs. Bathsheba W. Smith still cherishes the memory 
of Emma Smith, as that lady rode on her white horse beside 
her husband through the streets of Nauvoo, as one of her 
priceless visual mementoes. 

Mrs. Smith was a member of the first Relief Society, 
organized by the Prophet Joseph Smith in 1842 in Nauvoo. 
She is, therefore, the only living charter-member of that 



Society; she sat under the inspired teachings among- those 
early women, while the Prophet Joseph Smith, Brig-ham 
Young-, and Heber C. Kimball instructed them in their un- 
usual duties and privileges. She does not forg-et those days 
nor those teaching's. She was also permitted to receive her 
endowments under the hands of the same inspired Prophet 
and his wife Emma. Sister Smith is still alive and is the 
only living- person who thus received these blessings from the 
Prophet. She has seen the Relief Society grow from a local 
society to a great organization of forty thousand or more 
women, engaged in philanthropic and sociological work. She 
has worshiped and labored in every Temple ever built in 
these latter days, and has indeed done more of this glorious 
ordinance work than any other woman, living or dead. She 
has also had more public honors paid her than has any 
other woman in the Church, and she bears them all with 
gracious calmness and dignity. 

Mrs. Smith is the mother of three children. Her oldest 
son was slain by the Indians and his mother's heart is still 
sore and tender for that loss; her other son John died a 
few hours after birth. Her daughter, named for herself, 
Bathsheba, married Clarence Merrill and has brought to 
this world fourteen children for this grandmother in Is- 

Sister Smith is tall, gracious and queenly in presence, 
dignified and affable in manner, true and unswerving in her 
convictions of right. Her husband was first counselor to 
President Brigham Young and Church historian for many 
years in the early Utah days, and Mrs. Smith kept an open 
house for all his friends. Home industry was a favorite sub- 
ject for her husband's speech and endeavor, and his wife 
was a beautiful exemplification of his highest ideals, for she 
spun and wove, embroidered and crocheted her own adorn- 
ments, as well as those which enriched her home. 

Mrs. Smith labored in the Nauvoo Temple and in the old 
Endowment House, where she was called to assist Sister 
Eliza R. Snow in Utah's early days; and she has rarely 
missed one day in the Salt Lake Temple since its opening. 
It is a lovely and an inspiring sight to see this high priest- 
ess of righteousness arrayed in her simple white gown of 
home-made silk, her dark eyes still bright, her fair, deli- 

28 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I .A. 

cate face crowned with lustrous bands of shining' white hair, 
her finely-shaped head, with its rich, white lace draping, held 
erect, as her stately figure moves down the long aisle. The 
sweet smile of welcome greets all alike in its impartial gra- 
ciousness. She is indeed the Elect Lady, and wisdom and 
peace crown her days. 



Retrenchment among the older women. Senior and Junior De- 

WHEN some temple or pyramid is to be built by hu- 
man hands, the builder ponders long- as to its de- 
tails. His plans are studiously drawn. His materials are 
sought with reference to the exact place which they are to 
occupy. If the building is to be massive, he selects with 
care his foundation stones. He is not satisfied with the 
recommendation of his workmen, he pays a visit to the 
quarry for his own eyes to see, his own hands to select. 
He examines the mountain ledges to discover, if he can, 
the choicest and soundest stone for the first course which 
is to be laid deep in the earth. And how great is his anx- 
iety as the workmen uncover some huge stone, to see with 
what temper it will bear the blow of chisel and hammer! 
For on these stones is to rest the superstructure which 
shall rise into the clouds, and carry with each uplifting- 
course, strength, grace and beauty. Care in the details 
of the whole is necessary, but upon the strength of his 
foundation shall rest the security of his temple. 

The foundation of any great nation or people is al- 
ways laid by strong and mighty men and women. Only 
such have the disposition and the capacity to meet and 
overcome the tremendous obstacles which the beginning 
of things entails. 

The Gospel is interwoven closely with mingled threads 
of democratic and republican principles; or, rather, it is 
carefully constructed of the best elements of individualism 
and communism. The work of establishing- the Church 
was not accomplished alone by Joseph Smith; he was sup- 

30 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

ported and assisted by a group of as strong- and mighty 
souls as ever dwelt in the flesh both men and women. 
They were of powerful mold, fit to bear up the tremen- 
dous weight of the superstructure of the work of the Dis- 
pensation of the Fulness of Times. So it was with the 
establishment of the work of the Young- Ladies' Mutual 
Improvement. Brig-ham Young- and Eliza R. Snow were 
the corner stones of this movement. But there were other 
powerful spirits who were among the foundation stones. 
We who study the lives and characters of these pioneer 
workers are more and more impressed with this fact, 
as time and perspective give us better chances to see them 
as they were. "There were giants in those days." 

It would seem, in reviewing the events and records 
of that time, that the thought of retrenchment was upper- 
most in the minds of the leaders of the people. 

President Young was not satisfied with the efforts of 
his daughters alone in this direction, but was bent on estab- 
lishing a society which should encourage all the young 
girls in the Church to retrench from foolish habits, and to 
secure testimonies, as they studied the Gospel. Not only 
were the girls in need of wise "retrenchments," but the 
older sisters also were spending much needless time in the 
cooking and serving of meals and especially were they ex- 
travagant in the giving of banquets to their friends, each 
one vieing with the other in the preparation of elaborate 
feasts. Among the leading women of the Church, there was 
none who possessed more force and determination, or had 
greater zeal to carry out the commandments of the Lord, 
than had Sister Mary Isabella Home. Once a saint, al- 
ways a saint; and once a truth, always a truth, was the 
motto of her life. 

To this noble and good woman, President Young 
committed a grave trust. In the fall of 1869, before the 


first organization of the Young- Ladies had been effected 
in his own parlor, President Young: and party were mak- 
ing a tour of southern Utah. He noticed that wherever the 
party went great preparations were made for their entertain- 
ment: the sisters were necessarily kept at home instead 
of going to meeting to receive spiritual inspiration and 
encouragement from their leaders. 

Sister Home was at that time visiting her son, Bish- 
op Home of Gunnison. When the President arrived in 
Gunnison, he found the same condition that had been noted 
elsewhere, so looking at M. Isabella Home, he said: 

Sister Home, I am going to give you a mission, to 
begin when you return to your home the mission of 
teaching retrenchment among the wives and daughters of 
Israel. It is not right that they should spend so much 
time in the preparation of their food and the adornment 
of their bodies, and neglect their spiritual education. 

Sister Home felt the great responsibility of this mis- 
sion and modestly replied that she ''could not undertake 
it." However, it was placed upon her; and shortly after 
returning to Salt Lake, she invited Sister E. R. Snow and 
Sister Margaret T. Smoot to go with her to have an inter- 
view with President Young, during which he entered more 
fully into the subject and gave them instructions as to the 
proper steps to take to effect an organization. In accord- 
ance with these instructions a preliminary meeting of the 
older sisters was held at the home of Sister Home in the 
Fourteenth ward to which were invited twelve branch pres- 
idents of the Relief Society. An informal organization was 
effected at this time, and there was considerable interest man- 
ifested by the older women. Though no record has been pre- 
served of them, we learn from the minutes of the first 
public meeting, in May, 1870, that eight of these meetings 
were held through the winter, 



Very soon after this followed the public organization 
of the senior and junior departments of the Retrenchment 
Associations. It will be seen that Sister Eliza R. Snow 
had direct and detailed charge of all the work, she being 
especially interested in the junior departments. With her 
was associated, as always, Aunt Zina D. Young". But the 
mission of retrenchment among" the older sisters was com- 
mitted entirely to Sister M. I. Home. At first the rule 
was to give each president, in either the senior or junior 
department, six counselors. This rule was finally aban- 
doned, but it was of great service in the inception of the 

It was in the latter part of May that the first public 
meeting was held, and as we have the full minutes of that 
historic gathering, they will be here introduced. 

This meeting, as hundreds of subseqiient meetings 
of the sisters, was held in that well-known gathering place 




in the center of Salt Lake City, the Fourteenth ward as- 
sembly hall. 


Held at the Fourteenth ward assembly hall, May 28th, 

The meeting- was called to order by Mrs. M. I. 
Home. Mrs. Zina D. Youngf was nominated as president- 
ess of the meeting", and Mrs. Zina Williams (Card) as sec- 

Choir sang", On the Mountain Tops Appearing"," etc. 

Prayer by Mrs. M.I. Home. 

Choir sang-, "We Thank Thee, O God, for a Proph- 
et," etc. 

Mrs. Eliza Dunford read the minutes of the former 
meeting-, which were accepted. 

Sister Zina D. Young- then said that we had met to 

34 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. J. A. 

serve God, that she was happy to see so many of the sis- 
ters tog-ether. She stated that the Female Retrenchment 
Society had never been organized in public; that they had 
met at Sister Home's and organized there, but it was nec- 
essary to do so in public. She then presented Mrs. Mary 
Isabella Home as presidentess of the Ladies' Co-operative 
Retrenchment Association. Unanimously accepted. Sis- 
ter Home said as she was called upon to act as president- 
ess of the society, she would try to do her duty. She had 
no desire to do anything else. She desired an interest in 
the faith and prayers of all her sisters. That she had no 
ambition to be placed in such a position; but with the help 
of the Lord, and so many good sisters to back her, she 
would do her best. She then selected her four counselors, 
viz., Miss Eliza R. Snow, Mrs. Zina D. Young, Mrs. Mar- 
garet T. Smoot, and Mrs. Sarah M. Kimball. They were 
then presented by the president of the meeting and unani- 
mously accepted. 

Sister Zina D. Young said she wanted to speak on 
another subject. It was about the Young Ladies' depart- 
ment, the object of which was to retrench in dress, and 
to be reasonable and modest in all things. Not to run 
headlong after Gentile fashions, but to set a good example 
in Israel. For, she said, we do not realize what we are 
here for, and the greatness of the work in which we are 
engaged. She then presented Mrs. Ella Young Empey as 
presidentess of the Young- Ladies' department. Also her 
counselors, which were as follows: Mrs. Emily Y. Claw- 
son, Mrs. Zina Y. Williams, Mrs. Maria Y. Dougall, Miss 
Caroline Young, Miss Etidora Young, and Miss Phebe 
Young. They were unanimously accepted. 

Sister Eliza R. Snow then said she wished to make 
a few remarks with regard to the Young Ladies' depart- 
ment. It was President Young- 's sug-gestion, because he 
thought they would have more influence, as the reform 
was to consist not only in table retrenchment, but in the 
trimming's, and trailing dresses, also short ones. That the 
sisters, when they begin to retrench in long dresses, might 
not shorten them so that modesty blushes. And in run- 
ning from Babylon, they must not run so fast that they 
get beyond Jerusalem. If the angels were to come in our 


midst, how would they be able to distinguish us from the 
Gentiles? We dress the same, and too often act the same. 
We must be in earnest in our generation; it is too late in 
the day to sleep. Sisters, we have everything to encour- 
age us in this work. Said she met with a society at Wil- 
low Creek, day before yesterday, and that they were alive 
in the work. She feared, however, we were taking too 
much time, as the funeral services of the father of Apostle 
Taylor would be held here at three o'clock. Apostle Tay- 
lor had said if he had known of the meeting he would have 
made different arrangements. 

Sister Zina D. Young presented Miss Susa Young as 
general reporter of the society's meetings. Accepted. 

Sister Phoebe Woodruff then said she came, not ex- 
pecting to speak, but she was glad to see so many together. 
That it speaks well for the sisters. That she, for one, 
wished to do all that she could. And who of us did not 
wish to be ready when Jesus Christ again comes on the 
earth? That she felt as Sister Young had said, that none 
of us realize what we are here for. That the sisters should 
not be backward in coming to meetings, and doing the lit- 
tle things that God requires at our hands. Prayed the 
Lord to bless them in the name of Jesus Christ. 

The meeting was then adjourned till two weeks from 
that day. 

Choir sang, "Praise God from Whom all Blessings 

Benediction by Miss Eliza R. Snow. 

ZINA Y. WILLIAMS, secretary. 
SUSA YOUNG, reporter. 

It is good for us to study the words and acts of those 
early days. The spirit of worldly pleasure and vain fash- 
ions was rapidly creeping into the ranks of the daughters 
of Zion. We women are no better than we should be to- 
day, nay, nor half as good; but can the mind picture 
where we should have been, if the training and check 
of these associations had not been given? No one will 

36 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

deny that the women of the Church have been magnif- 
icently disciplined by their various organizations, begin- 
ning with the Relief Society; and it would be a much 
easier thing- for a great reform movement to sweep through 
our midst today than it was thirty-five years ago. All in 
all, there is much to encourage the sociologist in the steady 
improvement and progress of the women of the Church. 
It would be a blind if not an ungenerous historian who 
would not consider the cheering conditions which obtain 
among us today as the result of these early struggles. 

The principle of evolution is as true of organizations 
as of any other field of activity. It is as impossible for a 
great movement to spring into active being fully developed 
and perfected as it would be for a fruit to spring out of a 
tree without leaf, bud and blossom to precede it. It was 
so with the Y. L. M. I. A. The one thought of simpler 
dress, simpler food, simpler habits of life and speech first 
impressed the girls; but the spiritual meaning of all these 
things grew with its growth and the leaves began to put 
forth, the slender stem enlarged, the blossoms hung under 
the leaves, and now the fruit ripens yearly upon the 
spreading branches for the people to partake of and be re- 

i Following the public organization, the sisters went from 
ward to ward in Salt Lake City, organizing the young ladies 
in Junior Retrenchment Associations. Other towns and 
communities also took up the spirit of the times, and Young 
Ladies' Retrenchment Associations began to multiply. 
There are some records of these early efforts now accessible, 
and they will be treated in a later chapter. It will be no- 
ticed, however, that the branch of the work among the older 
sisters, termed the Senior, or General, Retrenchment Asso- 
ciation, was confined to the one large organization in Salt 
Lake City, under the presidency of Sister Home. Thus it 


came about that the general idea and purpose of retrench- 
ment centered gradually around the young women of Zion. 

The minutes of the second public meeting show that the 
officers of the newly organized Young Ladies' Retrenchment 
Associations brought their records and reports for the meet- 
ings of the Senior department. One reason for this was that 
these two associations were identical in structure and pur- 
pose, were organized at about the same date, and for a time, 
at least, were so closely interwoven that they may well be 
studied as companion associations. 

The second and best reason why the girls came to the 
Fourteenth ward was that thus far there were no stake or 
general organizations in any of the auxiliary societies. So 
the semi-monthly meeting of the Senior department of the 
Retrenchment Associations of the Fourteenth ward was the 
only general meeting of the women in the Church. 

The following are extracts from the minutes of the second 
public meeting of the two branches in combined session: 


Meeting called to order by Sister M.I. Home. 

Choir sang "Do What is Right," etc. 

Prayer by Sister Phoebe Woodruff. 

Choir sang "We Thank Thee,O God, fora Prophet," etc. 

Sister M. I. Home said she wished to nominate two 
more sisters as her counselors, namely, Sister Phoebe Wood- 
ruff, and Sister Bathsheba W. Smith, who were unanimously 

Minutes of the last meeting read by Miss Lydia Young, 
secretary, and accepted. 

Sister Eliza R. Snow said there had been other branches 
of the Young Ladies' department organized, which she 
wished to present to the meeting as follows: Miss Julia Home, 
pr-esident of the Fourteenth ward department; Miss Jennie 
Seaman, Miss Annie Taylor, Miss Harriet Taylor, Mrs. 

38 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

Beulah Beatie, Miss Sophia Taylor, Miss Georgiana Fox, 
counselors; Mrs. Isabella Pratt, secretary. 

Resolutions of said department read by Miss Julia 
Home, president, and accepted. Article read by Sister Bath- 
sheba W. Smith from a Boston paper. 

Sister Zina Y. Williams then read an article from the 
first department of the Young- Ladies' Association. Article 
read by Miss Susa Young- of her own composition. 

A meeting: having: been org-anized in the Fifteenth ward, 
Sister Snow presented Miss Sarah Russell as president of the 
Fifteenth ward department; Mrs. Janet Grigg-s, Miss Janet 
Swan, Mrs. Lucy Russell, Miss Mary Wright, Miss Sarah 
Price, and Miss Mary Greenig-, counselors; Mrs. Bell Guth- 
rie, secretary. Resolutions read by Mrs. Bell Guthrie; also 
an article from the pen of Sister S. M. Kimball descriptive of 
her travels in California. 

Sister Home said she was pleased to meet with the 
sisters ag'ain after an absence of three weeks . She was very 
much pleased to hear the minutes and articles read by the 
young" ladies. While on her visit north, she heard many say 
they had read the papers, and learned of the success of the 
meeting's. Some thought they would carry the retrench- 
ment too far, others thought it an excellent thing-, if properly 
carried out. She then g"ave a brief account of her trip 

After some days of travel, they went to Richmond; held 
a meeting-, thence to Smithfield, and held a meeting- and par- 
took of a sumptuous dinner prepared for them in the Smith - 
.field hall. Then drove to Log-an, stayed two days and held 
meeting's. After meeting" on the second day, accepted an in- 
vitation to go to Providence, a distance of about two miles. 
Then returned to Log-an, and attended a party in the evening". 
Arrived in Box Elder next day, then rode over to Og-den, and 
took the cars for home, where all arrived. 

Sister Snow said although this was a Retrenchment 
meeting, she wished to speak to the Relief Society; said she 
was very, very sorry to hear that some of the wards had 
been raffling quilts, etc. She said the society was first 
organized by Joseph Smith; it was designed to be a sacred 
and holy organization, and to save souls to improve the 
habits, feelings and thoughts of those connected with it. It 


should have nothing demoralizing in it; said she did not think 
God would bless money for the poor obtained by unrighteous 
means. She would just as soon play cards for money as to 
raffle for it. She wished to say to the presidents of the Re- 
lief Societies that President Young denounced raffling. If 
mothers set the example of raffling, they need not expect 
their children to increase iii goodness. We care more for 
the morals of the society than the relief of the poor. Said 
she would rather possess one shilling with the blessing of 
God upon it, than to have thousands that he did not sanction. 
If our consciences are founded on the Gospel of Jesus Christ, 
they will not yield to unholy things. If there are sisters 
who hold office here, let them speed the work of God; they 
should not do that which has been disapproved by proper 
authorities. The evil one is always on the alert to lead us 
astray. The love of money is the root of all evil. We had 
better go without, than to get means unrighteously. We 
live in a day of revelation, and it is our privilege to know 
the mind and will of our Father, and we need not be in the 
dark; for there are ways by which we can be instructed. We 
have God's Spirit and agency at our head; there is a way 
appointed by which we may know the law and will of God. 
She knew that it was the wish of all the sisters to do all the 
good they could and obey God's laws. Said she felt deeply 
on this point. Let us be faithful; we have the power of God 
in our midst; then, sisters, let us be up and doing. 

Sister Bathsheba W. Smith said she coincided with what 
Sister Snow had said; she knew it was not the President's 
wish to have raffling carried on anywhere, especially in the 
Relief Society; said we must sustain him by faith, and also 
by works, and God will sustain us, and we w r ill be blessed. 

Mrs. Zina D. Young said her feelings corresponded with 
what had been said concerning the practice of raffling; said 
we must do little by little, if we wished to be saved; this is 
what we want; our deeds and actions should coincide with 
what we preach. When we follow the example of the world 
we are not keeping the commandments of God. We have a 
more noble purpose than following the vain, foolish fashions 
of the world. It is for us to walk in the footsteps of our 
Heavenly Father. May his Holy Spirit be iipon us. May 
the peace of God be with you. 

40 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

Miss Snow then presented Mrs. Jtilina Smith as presi- 
dentess of the Sixteenth ward department; Mrs. Sarah E. 
Smith, Miss Margaret A. Winegar, Mrs. Mary J. Taylor, 
Miss Elizabeth M. Yates, Miss Mary A. Riser, Miss Effie L. 
Minkler, counselors; and Mrs. Caddie McKean, secretary. 
Unanimously accepted. Resolutions of said department were 
read by the presidentess, Mrs. Julina Smith. 

Sister Keaton, who spoke next, made remarks that were 

Sister Margaret T. Smoot said her heart rejoiced to see 
the movement taken, and would be glad to see the day when 
the daughters of Zion should be known by the dress they 
wear. Said she felt that the time had come and felt to re- 
joice that steps had been taken that would unite us, that our 
examples may be worthy of imitation. Said she was in a 
store, not long ago, and asked one of the brethren who was 
clerking if he thought the retrenchment was taking hold. He 
said he thought it was; said our sisters were working by ex- 
ample as well as precept. She urged us to press forward 
and not let our young sisters go ahead of us in this. She 
said the center stake of Zion would be the place where our 
fashions would originate. Said she had visited some of the 
settlements south; the people rejoiced in the good work. 
Said she felt President Young's daughters would be pat- 
terned after. Asked God to bless the young sisters and 
to bless all. 

Sister East said she felt God would bless her young 
sisters; said her heart was filled with praise to see them get 
up and read their resolutions . She had noticed a great many 
of the sisters, who have been to the House of the Lord, wear- 
ing their dresses low in the neck; she knew all the saints 
of God would see that she was not honoring the command- 
ments given her by God, if she did these things. She also 
quoted a few of Paul's sayings with regard to cutting the 
hair; she was taught that her hair was the greatest orna- 
ment she could wear, it was given as a glory to women, etc. 


Other speakers were Sisters Mary Ann Pratt, Eleanor 
Pratt, Sarah Phelps and Mercy Thompson. 

Choir sang, "I Saw Another Angel Fly." 
Benediction by Sister Smith. 



What a worthy cause was this: to engage the best efforts 
of these heroines of Mormonism! What greater field for their 
activities than this broad and noble one of establishing or- 
ganizations wherein the women of a whole people, both young 
and old, should find time and place for the development of 
the God-given gifts within them; associations where the 
spirit and soul should be of paramount importance; where 
the social instinct was made active through the mingling 
of all classes, the mind and the spirit cultivated through 
proper exercise; where all that was ennobling was encour- 
aged, while that which was degrading and corrupting was 
recognized and battled against in a common struggle for re- 
finement and education! That the girls who undertook this 
novel and exacting yoke were in earnest, and that they were 
ready to set about their work with very definite objects in 
view, is amply testified by an examination of the various 
resolutions which were prepared as a sort of informal consti- 
tution and by-laws of the local associations in all parts of the 
Church. The minutes of some of those far-away local ses- 
sions are also extremely interesting, as indicating the 
earnestness with which the girls were taking this new and 
untried flight into the mental and spiritual world. It 
will be profitable to examine later the resolutions and 
minutes of these local beginning's of the Mutual Improve- 
ment work. 



When a woman's life runs along in a smooth domestic 
course with nothing outside of the four walls of home-life 
to mark its progress, it is easy to record the simple story 
thereof; but when it has been as crowded with private and 
public acts as was the life of Sister Home, the historian 

42 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

with small space at command hesitates, appalled at the 
task of selecting" the necessary and vital facts those most 
worth recording-. The life of Mary Isabella Home was so 
full of color and incident, and that, too, of the noblest and 
best, that much of real importance must be left unsaid in 
the narrow confines of this book. But it is imperative 
that the main facts connected with the histories of the 
pioneer women who were associated with the beginning" of 
the Mutual Improvement work shall be put on record as a 
lesson to the youth of Israel. 

Mary Isabella Hales was born November 20, 1818, in 
England, in the town of Rainham, Kent. Her parents were 
of the vigorous, sound-minded middle class, and their 
children were brought up with the sober and sane lessons 
of self-restraint well drilled into them. Little Mary was 
of a spiritual turn of mind, and at as early an age as eleven 
years, was a devoted reader and student of the Bible. 
In 1832, her parents removed to "Upper Canada," bringing 
with them a family of seven. Mary Isabella was the 
eldest child, and as her mother was in delicate health, the 
thirteen year old girl was burdened with the heavier cares 
of the family. She was married to Joseph Home on the 
9th of May, 1836 A few weeks after the marriage rumors 
of a strange religion, and a strange young" prophet, reached 
the neighborhood. The Hales family were then living- in 
the country, about eight miles from the village of York, in 
"Upper Canada." Elder Parley P. Pratt followed close 
upon these rumors. The newly married couple attended the 
first meeting held by Elder Pratt, and both were ripe for con- 
version to the truth. Sister Home was baptized in July, 1836, 
by Elder Orson Hyde. From that hour, the home of the 
Homes held wide its hospitable doors for the entertainment 
of all traveling elders and Saints. 

In the latter part of the summer of 1837, Sister Home 
first saw the Prophet Joseph Smith; he came to her hus- 
band's house, and she entertained him at her own hearth- 
stone. She never tired of telling of that event. No 
stronger testimony of the majesty and power exerted by 
that mig-hty man of God can be adduced than the force 
and strength of the impressions which he made upon the 
great men and women who had but to know him to love 


and revere him. Sister Home's description is so vivid and 
convincing-, that it is here given. She said: 

"On shaking hands with the Prophet Joseph Smith, I 
received the Holy Ghost in such abundance that I felt it 
thrill my whole system from the crown of my head to the 
soles of my feet. I had never beheld so lovely a counte- 
nance; nobility and g'oodness were in every feature. I said 
to myself, 'O Lord, I thank Thee for g; ranting- me the 
desire of my heart in permitting me to associate with 
prophets and apostles.' ' 

Sister Home was also well acquainted with the Patri- 
arch, Hyrum Smith, and from him, later, she received a 
patriarchal blessing. 

The young couple emigrated to Far West in 1838. 4 In 
common with the rest of the Saints, the Homes suffered, 
labored, and were driven from place to place. They lived in 
Nauvoo, and, while there, were the intimate associates of the 
Prophet and his family. After the martyrdom, they shared 
the troubles and persecutions of that terrible time. They came 
to Utah in the pioneer year, reaching" here October 6th, 
1847. They lived in the Old Fort, until the husband could 
build a home. For many years they lived in the Fourteenth 
ward, and there Sister Home did much of her public work. 
She was the mother of fifteen children, four of whom died in 
infancy; the others have been honored, useful members of 
society and of the Church. Almost all of them have been 
leaders in some capacity. And no woman in this Church 
had more occasion to thank the Lord for the splendid spirits 
which drew their life and inspiration from her. 

Sister Home held many offices of trust among" her 
sisters. She was one of the members of the original Relief 
Society, formed in Nauvoo by the Prophet Joseph Smith. 
From the early days in L T tah to the day of her death, she 
served in one capacity or another in that society. She 
acted as counselor to Mrs. Phoebe Woodruff in the Fourteenth 
ward Relief Society for a number of years. Then, on 
December 12, 1867, she was chosen as president of that 
Relief Society. This was a surprise and a trial, as she was 
reserved and somewhat timid in her nature. But she had 
never learned to say No to a call of duty, so she accepted the 
trust, and went bravely forward. Let us quote from a 

44 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

sketch prepared for the Representative Women of Deseret, as 
to what followed this event: 

"Under the wise management of the president, the 
Fourteenth ward Relief Society increased in numbers, great 
good was accomplished in the relief of the poor and afflicted 
and means multiplied in the treasury. A two-story brick 
building was erected by the society, part of which was rented 
for a store, and the upper floor has been used by the society 
for meetings ever since. The society also built and owned a 
good granary, with a quantity of wheat. * * * When 
President Young instructed Sister Snow to go through the 
Territory and organize the young ladies into Mutual Improve- 
ment Associations, Mrs. Home was called to assist. She has 
organized many of the Young Ladies' Associations, also 
Primary Associations . ' ' 

In December, 1877, Sister Home was called to act as 
stake president of the Relief Society in the Salt Lake stake 
of Zion. She held that office until the stake was divided 
into six stakes, when she was eighty-five years old. She was 
an active worker in the interest of silk raising, and was for 
years the president of the board of directors for the Woman's 
Co-operative Store in Salt Lake City. She was an active 
participant in securing the suffrage for women, and was 
chosen more than once to offices of civil trust. She was a 
prominent worker, acting as chairman of the executive com- 
mittee of the Deseret Hospital . during the many struggling 
years of that pioneer effort of the women of Mormondom. 

We have seen the result of the work done by Mrs. 
Home in the Senior Retrenchment Associations, and yet 
none may measure the profound effect of the example 
and teachings of this godly woman. Her family was 
large, yet she found time to travel, organize, expound the 
Scriptures, and to bless and comfort thousands. She was 
economical without being parsimonious in her expenditures 
for the cause of righteousness; she was hospitable without 
being lavish; she had the manner of a duchess without 
worldly pride. Surely few idle words ever passed her lips, 
for she was reticent of speech. Her face was a living, 
radiant sunbeam. Its smooth lines never showed the 
cankering cares of distrust in God or in her fellow-men. 
She was almost worshiped by her husband and children; 


and so perfect was her gift of government, that she had 
not only no need to speak twice to her children, but she 
rarely had to speak at all, after they grew out of infancy. 
She seemed to diffuse righteousness, as a flower exhales per- 
fume. Her soul was an open book, for no shadow of du- 
plicity marred its perfectness or its peace; and she had the 
reward of a simple life, living without remorse. She lived 
to be nearly eighty-seven, and died surrounded by her de- 
voted sons and daughters. If any one would know the re- 
ality of filial devotion, let" him listen to the sound of her 
name upon the lips of one of her children. No common 
soul could inspire such exalted love and reverence. 

The memory of this good woman will always bring 
to mind the medium-sized, comely figure, neatly and taste- 
fully attired, with the dark hair banded over the brow, 
while the strands were braided in open small plaits turned 
under the ear, and then folded under the pretty black lace cap 
w r hich she wore for many years. The bright eyes beamed 
with heavenly hope and peace. She was a convincing, 
earnest speaker, and, when strongly moved , her tones thrilled 
with the eloquence of a pure and devoted love for truth. 
She might not always understand the poor and tempted 
sinner, but she would be just, no matter if the heavens fell. 
Such was one of the heroines of Mormonism; yet herein 
is but a brief picture of a full and beautiful life. 

Sister Home died Aiig. 25, 1905. The funeral services 
were held in the Salt Lake Assembly Hall, Aug. 29, and 
were marked by the same quiet, peaceful influence that 
characterized her life. 


The early annals of this people are crowded with the 
names of powerful men and mighty women, some of them 
well known and others little heard of; all were chosen from 
eternity to perform the great tasks assigned them by our 
Father. Among them there are few that shine with such 
radiance as does the name of Emmeline B. Wells. 

Mrs. Wells was born in Petersham, Worcester Co., 
Mass., February 29, 1828, and is of Puritan descent. Her 
forefathers, the Woodwards, came from England, to Mas- 

46 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

sachusetts Province, township of Boston, in 1630. The his- 
tory of the Woodward family is exceedingly interesting-; and 
the facts relating to the brilliant military, civil and profes- 
sional careers of the Woodwards have been verified from the 
best authority. They came from Normandy with the Nor- 
man invasion to England. They fought in the battles of 
Hastings, Agincourt, and Edgehill, and won such renown 
from the king as to receive from him a shield of pure gold 
with the inscription "Gentle but Brave," signifying "The 
Soul of Honor;" they were of the "court elite." Her 
mother's maiden name was Hare, and the forebears of this 
distinguished family were literary, artistic and musical. The 
military and patriotic character of the Woodwards continued 
after coming to America, and one of the family, Robert, was 
killed in King Philip's war, in 1675. Her own grandfather 
fought in the war of the Revolution, her father in the war of 
1812, while the Civil War had its scores of blue-coated repre- 
sentatives . 

When Mrs. Wells was a girl of thirteen, her mother, a 
widow, joined the Church, taking the younger children with 
her, and among them was her spiritual and gifted daughter 
Emmeline. "Emmie," as she was called, was exceedingly 
precocious, and was even then a literary light among her 
friends and relations . The step taken by mother and daugh- 
ter was bitterly resented by friends and associates, and 
they were subjected to the many petty persecutions attend- 
ant upon such an uncommon and unpopular departure from 
the Puritan standards. Joining the Church on the 1st of 
March, 1842, Emmie taught school one term in the town of 
Orange, Mass., and at the age of sixteen she left her home 
and mother, to go to Nauvoo, arriving there early in March, 
1844. Among her companions en route from Albany were 
returning missionaries who knew the Prophet Joseph Smith, 
and the girl listened eagerly to the conversation and descrip- 
tions given of him by his devoted followers; especially was 
she delighted at the promise made her by Mrs. Mary Snow 
Gates to introduce her to the Prophet . When the steamboat 
drew up to the landing at Nauvoo, she saw among the people 
assembled on the landing, a magnificent head and shoulders 
towering above the assembled crowd, and one look at the 
inspiring face and the piercing blue eyes convinced the girl 


that here was the Prophet Joseph Smith. As soon as they 
were landed, he went among the people shaking hands with 
each one; and the thrill that pervaded the girl's system at 
this first view and hand-clasp is held in vivid remembrance 
to this day. 

Through acquaintances of the Prophet, Emmeline became 
familiar with members of his household and often saw him. 
She heard him preach his last sermon and deliver his mem- 
orable speech to the Nauvoo Legion; and she garnered with 
wisdom beyond her years the seed-thoughts which fell from 
those inspired lips. In 1845, on the 24th of February, she 
became the plural wife of the presiding bishop of the Church, 
Newel K. Whitney. They were sealed by Brigham Young, 
and from that time, the young wife was in daily association 
with the leaders of the Church. At the hospitable home of 
the bishop, and his equally famous wife, "Mother" Ann 
Whitney, Emmeline learned much; and she absorbed into 
her very soul the spirit and genius of Mormonism. Once 
when Bishop Whitney was speaking to his gifted girl-wife, 
he said, "You'll see the day when you'll have nothing to do 
but sit and write." That was in the summer of 1845. She 
was stricken in common with the people at the terrible death of 
the Prophet and Patriarch, and she mourned as the people 
mourned, like sheep without a shepherd. She formed one of 
that historic company under the shadow of the bowery, where 
Sidney Rigdon tried to persuade the Saints to accept of his 
leadership; and she saw what they all saw, the mantle of 
Joseph fall upon Brigham Young as that great leader stepped 
to the platform of the bowery and surprised them with his 
presence. She heard the voice of "Joseph" speaking, as it 
were, through the mouth of "Brigham." She heard those 
about her, as she stood aloft on a wagon -box, saying to each 
other in awe-struck tones "See, it is the Prophet; he is res- 
urrected." But she knew then, as she knows now, that it 
was not the Prophet, for he was dead. She accepted this 
great transfiguration as a powerful testimony to the people 
that Brigham Young was the divinely appointed successor, 
and that Joseph Smith was present in the spirit, and was 
pleased with him. She was present with Mother Whitney 
and the bishop in the dread winter days of 1845 that fol- 
lowed, and was frequently in the Temple, when the crowded 








companies were daily taken through that sacred house. Here 
she received her own blessings. She was present at the noon 
meal, and listened with profound eagerness to the sober and 
inspired conversation of those great leaders, sometimes ten or 
twelve of them at a time, as they sat at table in the unfin- 
ished dining room over the tithing office. 

She crossed the Mississippi on the ice with Mother Whit- 
ney and the family, February, 1846, and bore with her sis- 
ters the trials and burdens of that enforced march across the 
trackless wilds of the west. She taught school in Winter 
Quarters, also a Sunday School, having as pupils the sons 
and daughters of the leaders of the Church. On September 
28, 1848, she reached the valley, and in six weeks from that 
time her eldest daughter, Isabel, was born in a wagon on 
the Whitney block, on the ground now occupied by the L. 
D. S. University. 

Bishop Whitney died on the 23rd of September, 1850, 
leaving his young wife with two little children, the baby 
being but five weeks old. The two wives of the bishop were 
always very congenial , and to this day the name of ' ' Mother 
Ann Whitney" is as precious and honored in the heart of Mrs. 
Wells and her daughters as that of any Hebrew prophetess . 
During the summer of 1852, Mrs. Wells taught school in the 
Twelfth ward of this city. 

Two years after Bishop Whitney's death, October 12, 
1852, she was married to one of the greatest of our modern 
heroes and leaders Daniel H. Wells, friend of the Prophet, 
and later the counselor of President Brigham Young. By 
President Wells she had three daughters, and she lived out 
the happy and burdened life of a pioneer mother, in common 
with all her associates. But Emmeline was different from 
many of these, for all her life she had loved and cherished a 
heavenly visitor in her soul ; it was the muse of poetry ! When 
trouble assailed or joy exalted, this gifted daughter of New 
England sang her secret melody, and secretly hid it away. 
She was too busy to repine, too blessed to regret. But in 
her heart there ever dwelt one star-like thought: she would 
join the galaxy of the immortals, if only her wings were 
strong and sure. Once when her husband, President Wells, 
asked his frail but dauntless young wife what she would best 
like as her life-work, she answered promptly: "To be the 

50 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

editor of a magazine." Time was to be her friend; she 
was not to carry her unfulfilled long-ing into eternity, as so 
many others have done she was to enter into the Promised 
Land, at least for a season. 

In 1874, Lulu Greene Richards, the young editor of the 
new woman's paper, "The Woman's Exponent," which had 
been started under the patronage of Edward L. Sloan, Presi- 
dent Brigham Young, Eliza R. Snow and others, invited 
Mrs. Wells to assist her in the work of developing the paper. 
It was the first western publication by women and for 
women, and there are but two older publications of its class 
in the world, these being the Woman s Journal, of Boston, 
and the English Woman' s Review, London. Sister Wells 
continued as associate editor until July, 1877, when she 
assumed the position of editor-in-chief. 

This new venture demanded courage, faith, ability and 
patience from its editors and promoters; but it must be 
remembered that the paper had Sister Eliza R. Snow for 
many years as its patron saint and guardian, which will pave 
the way for that other historic statement, that more than any 
other woman, Emmeline B. Wells was drawn and held close 
to that great organizer and leader. Sister, Wells was a 
private secretary to her in the early days of Mutual Improve- 
ment and Primary work; and she was her bosom companion 
and friend for years, as she was and is the closest friend and 
associate of hersiiccessors, ZinaD. H. Young and Bathsheba 
W. Smith. It is but justice thus to state this enlightening 
fact; for more than any other woman, Sister Wells has car- 
ried along through the years the spirit and genius of that 
master-mind among women, Eliza R. Snow. She assidu- 
ously garnered in her youth the wisdom and the integrity 
which brightens her mental and spiritual labors like a lumi- 
nous cloud of exceeding beauty. 

From the day when Sister Wells entered the Exponent 
office (then located in the old building where the Salt Lake 
Herald was published) till the present time, she has been 
closely identified with the public work of this Church. Her 
hidden gifts of poetry and literary expression blossomed forth 
like a flower first kissed by the sun, and her fertile pen has 
touched upon every issue, past and present, of the woman 
question. She has written more than any other Latter-day 


Saint writer of her sex, and has done it in a sane, dignified 
way. For thirty-three years she has been sole editor, pub- 
lisher and proprietor of the ]\\)inan's I^.vfiouent. She has 
encouraged and brought out many present-day writers; she 
has met and entertained at her office thousands of the 
strangers within our gates, both great and small, rich and 
poor, foreign and local. Her correspondents have numbered 
into the thousands, and among them have been such as Rose 
Elizabeth Cleveland, John G. Whittier, the Duchess of 
Sutherland, the Princess Gabrielle Wiszniewska, Duchess De 
Luynes and her brother, the Count, Adeline D. T. Whitney 
and scores of others. She has published a volume of poems 
entitled "Musings and Memories," and edited "Songs and 
Hymns of the Wasatch," with "Charities and Philanthro- 
pies," and a pamphlet history of the Relief Society. Her 
work in the eastern conventions and Woman's Congresses 
would form a small volume of itself; she was the first Mor- 
mon woman sent down to Washington to appeal to the Presi- 
dent of the United States, and to petition Congress on the 
Mormon question. The occasion was as follows: 

In November of 1878, she was instrumental in calling a 
great mass meeting of the women of Utah, which was pre- 
sided over by Sister Eliza R. Snow herself. This was one 
of the most memorable meetings of Mormon women on 
record. Mrs. Wells prepared the resolutions that were 
voted upon by that large assembly of women, and under the 
direction of President John Taylor, she was chosen to accept 
the invitation of Susan B. Anthony and Sarah Andrews Spen- 
cer in that same year at the seat of government, to represent 
the women of Utah. She selected the only daughter of Sis- 
ter Zina D. Young, Zina Y. Williams, as she was then 
known, to accompany her; and together they visited Wash- 
ington, appearing before the committees of the House and 
the Senate to plead the cause of the women and children who 
would suffer from the law of 1862. She also prepared and 
presented a memorial to Congress asking for the repeal of 
the anti-polygamy law of 1862, and for legislation to protect 
the Mormon women and children of Utah Territory. Num- 
berless times she has attended the Woman's Congresses held 
in Washington, Omaha, New York, Chicago, Indianapolis, 
Des Moines, New Orleans, Minneapolis and other cities, and 

52 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

in each of these great gatherings, Mrs. Wells was a modest 
but popular figure. She proved of such value in the coun- 
cils of the women of this nation that she was chosen in 1899 
to act as the second recording secretary of the National 
Council of Women. She was an intimate friend of Elizabeth 
Cady Stanton, of Lucy Stone, of Julia Ward Howe, Matilda 
Joslyn Gage, Frances Willard, Susan B. Anthony, May 
Wright Sewall and others. 

At the great London Conference of Women held in 
June, 1899, Mrs. Wells was a speaker and appeared at the 
select audience held in Convocation Hall, Church House, 
Deanery of Westminster Abbey. She visited historic places 
while in England, Scotland and France, and spent an eve- 
ning- with Marie Corelli at Stratford -on -A von. 

Mrs. Wells served for several years as vice-chairman of 
the Republican state committee, and she is a devoted poli- 
tician and an excellent speaker. She was a member of the 
Constitutional convention of 1882, and is still an active par- 
ticipant in the political affairs of the state. One amusing in- 
cident which occurred in Atlanta, Georgia, at the W. S. A. 
convention in 1895, has been published far and wide. In her 
address at the Opera House in that city upon Utah's being 
admitted to statehood she was so enthusiastically applauded 
that the staid Quaker, Mis^ Anthony, came forward and em- 
braced her upon the platform. 

Entirely disproving the Osier theory about old age, Mrs. 
Wells has performed her greatest work has made more his- 
tory for herself and for the Church and State in her later life, 
than she did in her young or middle life. Her children 
reared, she has devoted her whole life to the public good. 
She has been a living encyclopaedia of information on all sub- 
jects connected with the cause of woman, both historical and 
civil. She has been and is a bureau of information for every 
association, society and club in the state. It is a liberal edu- 
cation to listen to her conversation, and she is possessed of 
some of the rarest traits ever given to woman. She is sensi- 
tive without smallness, she is wise without narrowness, and 
religious without bigotry. She is a tender, loving link be- 
tween the women of the Church and those without, both of 
whom reverence and love her for the good she has done. 


She is sarcastic at times, not to say caustic, but her repent- 
ance follows swift on the heels of her offense. 

If you would know what hard work, indomitable faith 
and divine intelligence can do for a woman, just watch ' 'Aunt 
Em;" see her, for instance, as she threads her way across a 
crowded thoroughfare, flouting- all assistance, and then see 
her emerge on the other side of the street to hold converse, 
perchance, with some busy politician where in ten minutes 
you will hear the fate of the Republican party in this state 
cooked, carved, and served, in a most delectable way. Ob- 
serve her at a social function the observed of all observ- 
ers with her waving white hair tucked carelessly about 
her shapely ear her delicate gray silk trailing behind her 
slender form, as she moves about to give a loving greeting 
to all her numberless friends. That is a picture of old-time 
grace and refinement that will not soon fade from the mind . 
The most unusual and delightful trait about Mrs. Wells is 
her keen sense of humor; this power has prolonged her life 
and preserved her reason, in the midst of crushing trials, 
while it makes her a delightful companion to men and women 
alike. If one were to sum up in one word the deepest im- 
pression given by this remarkable woman, it would be done 
in that elusive term ' 'refinement." She is exquisitely deli- 
cate and dainty, in her writing, her living, and in her life. 
Such, briefly, is the woman who is an inspiration to her 
friends, a thorn to her envious associates, and "a companion 
of princes'-' in her own right. 


One of the women engaged in this early work was, as 
we have seen, Sister Margaret T. Smoot, wife of President 
Abraham O. Smoot. She was worthy of her great associ- 
ates. Tall in stature, with portly form, she possessed the 
dignity and proud humility which characterizes the truly 
high bred woman. 

Born in Chester district, South Carolina, April 16, 1809, 
she inherited the Scotch determination of her father, Anthony 
McMeans, who emigrated to America before the war of the 
Revolution. He was fired with patriotic zeal in the crisis 

54 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

that swept over the country, and he immediately enlisted in 
the patriot ranks and continued in the struggle until the 
close of the war. Her mother's name was Hunter, and she 
was of Irish birth. Her Grandfather Hunter served in the 
Revolutionary war, being" an intimate friend of General 
Washington. Her husband, Abraham O. Smoot, came of 
equally patriotic stock, the Smoot family of Virginia being- 
well known in that state's history. 

"Ma" Smoot, as she was lovingly known for over half 
her life, was married in 1834, and in 1837 she and her hus- 
band went to Far West, Missouri. From that time they par- 
took of the bitter cup of mobbing- and persecution which was 
poured out upon their people. 

They were among the Utah pioneers, coming in the fall of 
1847. They settled in the Twentieth ward of Salt Lake City, 
where Brother Smoot was bishop for years; he also served 
the people as mayor of the city for several terms. Sister 
Smoot was president of the Twentieth ward Relief Society. 

When Bishop Smoot was called to Provo, he was con- 
siderably tried by the sacrifice involved; but "Ma" was his 
cheerful counselor and inspirer, and she imparted, not only 
to him, but to his entire family, a portion of her own brave 
faith and trust. 

"Pa" Smoot was the father of nearly every good and 
great enterprise in Utah county, but every one knew that 
while he administered justice, "Ma" stood by his elbow to 
inculcate mercy and peace. The people and the family re- 
vered Brother Smoot, but they almost worshiped Sister 
Smoot. Her strong yet gentle influence was everywhere 
present, and none loved her better than the wives and chil- 
dren of her husband. What grander tribute could be paid to 
a mortal or an immortal woman! 

Sister Smoot was associated closely with Sisters Eliza R. 
Snow and Zina D. Young in every plan for the advancement 
of women. Her voice was raised in the first convention of 
women in Utah in 1870 which pleaded for the right of equal 
suffrage from Congress. She was identified with the original 
Silk Association, and was an officer and promoter of every 
phase of Relief Society work. Small wonder, then, that she 
was chosen by Sister Snow to assist in the work of establish- 
ing associations for the mental and spiritual welfare of the 


young women of Zion. Right nobly did she respond to the 
call, and later, on her removal to Provo, she assumed the re- 
sponsibility of the work in that district. She also traveled 
much, under Sister Snow's direction, throughout the Terri- 


Mrs. Sarah M. Kimball would have been, in any other 
community, a powerful leader and the foremost woman; in- 
deed, she came near to that distinction in a community where 
there were a multitude of strong and superior women. She 
was born in New York state, and was of New England ex- 
traction. She was extremely active, ambitious and aggres- 
sive, yet reserved and prudent. She it was, in Nauvoo, who 
had moved out to establish a sewing circle for the benefit of 
the workers on the Temple, when the Prophet called the 
women together to give them the more perfect organization 
of the Relief Society. She was prominent in all the work 
for women in this Church, and was not only one of the early 
organizers of the Junior Retrenchment Associations, but she 
was claimed by Sister Taylor as an honorary counselor in 
the w r ork of the general board. She was a strong advocate 
of woman's suffrage, and was very advanced in all her opin- 
ions on sex questions. She was a fine speaker, and an ex- 
cellent writer. She was an active advocate of home litera- 
ture, and often spoke in favor of the women's organizations 
owning and publishing their own papers or magazines. 

Sister Kimball was an intimate friend of Miss Susan B, 
Anthony and other great suffrage leaders. She was presi- 
dent of the Fifteenth ward Relief Society for many years, 
and acted upon many boards in spiritual and industrial ad- 


Mrs. Phoebe Carter Woodruff, one of the early workers 
for women in Utah, was born in Maine, and was of Puritan 
descent. She was of the type of women who make one think 
of tempered steel so strong, so true, and so absolutely puri- 
fied of base and common metals. She was of vigorous habit 
and of invincible will. No word of complaint or recital of 



her troubles and difficulties was ever heard from her lips. 
She was a rock of sure anchorage in the midst of all storms. 
Her speech was earnest, if not eloquent, and her words were 
few and wisely chosen. Who that remembers her deep- 
toned voice does not recall the sense of security and faith 
which it carried to every listening- ear? She was associated 
with Sister Snow in the establishing" of Retrenchment Asso- 
ciations among 1 the daughters of Zion. 


Mrs. Jane S. Richards, wife of Elder Franklin D. Rich- 
ards, was born January 31, 1823, at Pamelia, Jefferson 
county, New York. She was one of the early workers in the 
Relief Society of the Church, being- a member of the first 

association, in Nauvoo, and 
continuing- her labors in this 
state. She was also very ac- 
tive in the work done for the 
org-anization of the Young- 
Ladies' Associations through - 
out the Church . She traveled 
much, especially in the north- 
ern counties, under the direc- 
tion of Sister Eliza R. Snow, 
to set in order the various 
associations throughout the 
north. And to her was ac- 
corded a special honor: when 
President Brigham Young: 
went up to Weber stake July 
19, 1877, to organize the 
stake Relief Society the 
first and only one done by 
President Young- he set 
apart Sister Richards to pre- 

JANE s RICHARDS. side over these stake Socie- 

ties. She was also first coun- 
selor to Zina D. Young, the general president of the Relief 
Societies of the Church, until Sister Young's death, since 
which time Sister Richards has been senior member of the 
General Board, where she is loved, honored and respected 


by every member of that body of women workers. At the 
same time that President Young placed her over the Relief 
Society of Weber stake, he gave her the entire charge of the 
woman's work in that stake; which of course included the Y. 
L. M. I. Associations. She w r as therefore a mother to all the 
young women in the stake, and was and is beloved not only 
by all the older women in the Relief Societies, but also by 
all the young ladies, as well as by the little children in the 
Primary Association. In accordance with the familiar and 
loving custom among this people, she is "Aunt Jane" to all 
Weber stake to this day. She has lived a long and useful 
life, and now sits at the evening of her day looking down 
into the sun-kissed and sorrow-scarred fields of her yester- 
days with reverent and peaceful eyes. 


Some of their resolutions. Travels of pioneer organizers. 

THE present age is the admitted "woman's age." The great 
underlying unrest and upheaval in all classes of society 
on this important subject constitutes a grave promise and an 
equally grave menace to the future of our race. It would be 
difficult to find in any age or community as many progressive, 
intelligent, and capable women, other things being equal, as 
can be found among the Latter-day Saints. Such a state- 
ment would not be contradicted by one who is familiar with 
our life and our people; but necessarily it would excite scorn 
if voiced to strangers. There are two fundamental reasons 
which have contributed to create this condition. It requires 
decision of character, moral courage and fine self-denial to 
accept and maintain an unpopular religion. And if, as in 
this case, the religion is hated and its adherents despised, 
then indeed nmst the men and women who accept it be 
possessed of high courage and great patience. Add to this 
persecution and mobbings, and you have fruitful soil for the 
growth of the Christian virtues, if such a people survive and 
preserve the elements of truth. All new religionists have 
been termed fanatics; but from just such material have been 
fashioned the Luthers, the Crom wells, the Knoxes, and even 
the great Master himself, with his circle of despised followers. 
The second great factor in shaping strong, self-reliant 
and original characters is found in the many problems of 
pioneering and empire-building which have confronted our 
people. We have been and constantly are "pioneering" in 
this and other countries. To conquer the rude strength of 
the wilderness; to soften the hard crust which had hidden 


the face of nature for uncounted centuries; to trail the chains of 
a measured distance over a desert which knew only the path 
of savage whim or the untrammeled rush of buffaloes; to 
quiet the wild pangs of fear and loneliness with the whirr of 
the loom and the whiz of the spinning wheel ; to fill the deep 
brooding silence of ages with the lowing of cows and the 
laughter of growing children; to plant, to reap, to sow, to 
garner; to build and to fashion homes and cities in the close 
embrace of a forbidding desolation to do these things is to 
develop every known resource, and to originate some un- 
known ones. Such experiences give great initiative power 
and executive ability. 

Let a new movement be suggested among our people, 
instantly there are found thousands ready to carry it to suc- 
cessful completion. This being true, it is not to be expected 
that a movement like this new one of retrenchment would 
wait long for progressive and bright minds to grasp its 
potentialities and reduce its truths to individual or to local 

There lived in the Nineteenth ward of Salt Lake City 
the large and intelligent families of the philosopher and 
orator Apostle Orson Pratt and his brother Parley P. Pratt. 
They have bequeathed to their children some of the rare gifts 
which so distinguished them for the first half century of our 
existence as a Church. Among the daughters of Parley P. 
Pratt was one Lona Pratt, now Eldredge. She was a young 
school teacher and an intimate friend of Dora Young, one of 
the youthful counselors to Ella Empey. 

Miss Dora Young described the initial Retrenchment 
meeting of her father's family in the Lion House in such 
glowing terms to her friend Lona Pratt, together with the 
benefits to be derived from such an association, that Miss 
Lona was filled with the desire to do some similar work 
in her own neighborhood. Lona Pratt was then only 

60 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

about eighteen years of age, but she was full of zeal. 
Accordingly one day she invited her girl friends, many 
of whom were her pupils, to meet her at the close of the 
school in the schoolhouse. This was May 29, 1870. She 
opened this little gathering with prayer, and called on those 
assembled to give expression to their thoughts. To her sur- 
prise she found her friends already converted to her idea, 
and there was no need of urging them to form a society 
they were eager for its inception. Accordingly there was 
a board appointed, after the pattern described by Miss Dora 
Young, and the following were chosen as officers: Lona 
Pratt, president; Libbie Rich, Viola Pratt, Mrs. Louie Wid- 
dison, Ellen Wilcox, Lucy Arnold, Mary Nebeker, coun- 
selors; Annie Smith, secretary. 

Meetings were held during the winter in the Nineteenth 
ward house, in the schoolroom, and at Lucy Arnold's home. 
Sister E. R. Snow heard of this voluntary work, and she in- 
vited the girls to attend the meeting of the Senior association 
in the Fourteenth ward hall, and there they would be organ- 
ized in due form and ceremony. This was done, and the 
example of the Nineteenth ward association was rapidly fol- 
lowed in the other wards. 

The resolutions passed by the various ward departments 
were alike in nature, and yet each one had some special fea- 
ture to distinguish it from the others. One speaks of taking 
up the study of the Scriptures, and of cultivating reverence 
for sacred things; another denounces gossip; another re- 
solves to shun all evil associations; another inveighs against 
the then prevalent fashion of wearing short hair; another re- 
solves to cultivate the mind and become more enlightened and 
intelligent; while still another decides to study self-govern- 
ment as well as other desirable qualities. All were united, 
however, in the one central thought of electing a greater 
simplicity of dress and of living; and of cultivating the mind 


rather than ministering to the pleasure of the body. There 
were many excellent thoughts contained in these resolutions, 
copies of some of which have been preserved. The names 
and labors of the early officers attached thereto have entered 
into the history of this people. 

We have not the resolutions of the Nineteenth ward 
society, but here follow some of the other early ones: 

Resolutions of the Fourteenth ward Young Ladies' de- 
partment of the Ladies' Co-operative Retrenchment Associ- 
ation, organized June 4. 1870. 

Resolved, That we as members of the Church of Jesus 
Christ of Latter-day Saints, having great responsibilities 
resting upon us, and feeling grateful for the privileges we 
enjoy as wives and daughters of elders in Israel, do mutually 
agree, to sustain each other in all good works. 

Resolved, That realizing the magnitude of the work in 
which we are engaged, and the importance of the position 
we occupy as daughters in Zion, we do consider it unbecom- 
ing in us to pattern after the pride, ^vanity and folly of the 
world, and feeling that we have worshiped at the shrine of 
fashion too long, do solemnly pledge ourselves to retrench in 
our dress, and to wear only that which is becoming to women 
professing to be Saints. 

Resolved, That as Saints being accountable to God for 
the use we make of the abilities and intelligence he has 
given us, we are determined to devote our time and talents 
in governing ourselves, storing our minds with useful knowl- 
edge, and improving every opportunity afforded us of qualify- 
ing ourselves to fill useful and honorable positions in the 
Kingdom of God. 

Resolved, That as President Young has repeatedly coun- 
seled us to let our garments be plain, and to cease following 
after the world, we will co-operate together, both by precept 
and example, in carrying out his counsel, and doing every- 
thing required of us, that we may gain the approbation 
of ,our Heavenly Father and the confidence of all good Saints . 

Julia M. Home, president; Jennie Seaman, Harriet A. 
Taylor, Sophia E. Taylor, Annie M. Taylor, Beulah Woodruff 
Beatie, Georgiana Fox, counselors; Isabella Pratt, secretary. 

62 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

Resolutions of the Thirteenth ward Young- Ladies' de- 
partment of the Ladies' Co-operative Retrenchment Associ- 
ation, organized June 27, 1870. 

Resolved, That we, the daughters of Zion, perceiving" 
that many duties are incumbent upon us, heartily concur with 
those resolutions already adopted by the departments of 
different wards, and are eager to offer our influence to this 
noble reform in dress. Inasmuch as our Prophet, Brigham 
Young, has led us here into these pure and peaceful vales, 
far from the midst of Babylon, we believe it ignoble to imi- 
tate those worthless and inconsistent habits acquired by the 

Resolved, That we are now determined 'to maintain an 
independence as regards the refinement of our apparel. We 
will conform to no customs inconsistent with true taste, deli- 
cacy and judgment; but the adornment of our persons shall 
be compatible with becoming gentility, regardless oj: the 
fashion plates of the day, and we will place before the world 
an example worthy of imitation, for we realize that the culti- 
vation of our immortal minds is of more value than perish- 
able ornaments. 

Resolved, That we make an effort to be temperate, 
avoiding the useless habit of frivolous conversation, and 
strive to become more enlightened and intelligent; to be 
judicious in the selection of our companions, and in our asso- 
ciations endeavor to inspire a sentiment of improvement. 

Resolved, That we will carry out the advice of President 
Young and his counselors; we feel to sustain the priest- 
hood and every institution organized by it. We will endeavor 
to keep the commandments of God, and humbly live the re- 
ligion we profess and never speak lightly of its sacred prin- 

Flora L. Shipp, president; Frank Wells, Mary Woolley, 
Dessie Wells, Belle Park, Emma Wells, Kate Wells, coun- 
selors; Lydia Young, secretary. 

Resolutions of the Sixteenth ward Young Ladies' de- 
partment of the Ladies' Co-operative Retrenchment Associ- 
ation . 

Resolved, That we, the danghters of Zion, residents of 
the Sixteenth ward, Salt Lake City, realize in a measure the 


sacred duties devolving: upon us in the Gospel, and the great 
responsibilities that rest upon us as present and future wives 
and mothers in Israel, and also the greatness and worth of 
the glorious cause that we have of our own choice most 
cheerfully and solemnly espoused, do agree and covenant 
that we will not be one whit behind our sisters according to 
our abilities in carrying out practically all just and righteous 

Resolved, That we will, by the aid of the Holy Spirit, 
not only profess but live the Gospel, and seek diligently that 
wisdom and discernment by which we shall rightly judge 
between the vain and foolish fashions and measures of a 
heartless and corrupt world, and the neat, simple and befit- 
ting apparel, and the modest, chaste and prudent conduct of 
a Saint. 

Resolved, That we will be 'guided by the holy priesthood, 
hearken to the voice of experience, wisdom and revelation, 
associate with the pure, the virtuous and good, shun evil 
society and communications and the glitter and tinsel of hol- 
low fashion, forms, and hearts that we will not neglect our 
prayers; and that we will ever bear in remembrance that 
"pure and undefiled religion before God, the Father, is this: 
to visit the fatherless and the widows in their affliction, and 
to keep ourselves unspotted from the world." 

Julina L. Smith, president; Sarah E. Smith, Mary A. 
Riser, M. A. Winegar, Elizabeth M. Yates, Effie L. Minkler, 
counselors; Caddie McKean, secretary. 

Resolutions adopted by the Twentieth ward department 
of the Young Ladies' Retrenchment Association, organized 
July 8, 1870. 

Resolved, That we, realizing the sacred and important 
duties devolving upon us as daughters of Zion, will from this 
day retrench in dress, and follow no more the vain fashions 
of the world, but help to create a fashion acceptable to all 
Israel and pleasing in the sight of heaven. 

Resolved, That we, believing in the sacred Scriptures, 
and as St. Paul says: "The hair is given to woman for a 
glory and a covering" will not hereafter have our heads 
shorn of their glory. 

Resolved, That we, realizing that all will be judged ac- 

64 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

cording" to their actions here below, will cease to be heady, 
high-minded, lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God, 
and walk with a meek spirit which is, in the sight of God, of 
g-reat price. 

Resolved, That we will devote such opportunities as we 
derive from this association to self improvement, and instead 
of wasting" precious moments, will use them for the purpose 
of becoming- better acquainted with the laws of God, and we 
will also read the best books. 

Kate Sharp, president; Aggie Caine, Lizzie Sharp, 
Emma Fowler, Georgiana Calder, Rebecca Daynes, Eliza M. 
Williams, counselors; Sarah M. Napper, secretary. 

Resolutions adopted by the Eighth ward department of 
the Ladies' Co-operative Retrenchment Association, Salt 
Lake City, organized July 12, 1870. 

Resolved, That we, the daughters of Zion, in conformity 
with the wish of our beloved President Brigham Young, and 
realizing that it is our duty as daughters of elders of Israel , 
do most truly and sincerely sustain and enter into the co- 
operative association that the ladies of the Latter-day Saints 
formed, and we are determined by the help of the Almighty 
to so order our lives that we shall be worthy the name we 
bear, and we do unitedly pledge ourselves to uphold and sus- 
tain the sisterhood in doing good. 

Resolved, That inasmuch as we have come out from the 
world that we may become a light thereto, we will show by 
our daily walk and conversation, also by our dress, that we 
are that light. We will dress in a becoming manner. We 
will not follow the fashions of the wicked world, but will en- 
deavor to attire ourselves as become th Saints of God, and as 
much as possible in the workmanship of our own hands. 

Resolved, That inasmuch as order is the first law of 
heaven, we will endeavor to learn the law by making our- 
selves acquainted with the principles of life and salvation. 
We will study the Bible, Book of Mormon, Doctrine and 
Covenants, and all works pertaining to our holy religion. 
We will not speak lightly of the sacred ordinances of the 
house of God, nor ridicule our brethren and sisters, but will 
sustain them with our faith and prayers when they speak to 
each other of the things pertaining to the Kingdom of God. 


Resolved, That we will not speak evil of anyone, but will 
be kind to all, especially the aged, and infirm, the widow and 
orphan. We will endeavor to become acquainted with the 
laws of nature, that we may become strong", healthy and vig- 
orous. We will also study all literature that will qualify 
us to become ornaments in the kingdom of God, that we 
may merit the approbation of our brethren and sisters and of 

Clara E. Robinson, president; Ellen H. McAllister, 
Bethula Palmer, Esther J: Fletcher, Mary S. Leaver, Ellen 
Barnes, Mary E. Bringhurst, counselors; Annie B. Starr, 

Two years active work served to establish the new 
organizations on a sound footing. As rapidly as might be, 
Sister Snow, assisted by Sisters Zina D. H. Young, Mary 
Isabella Home and Margaret T. Smoot, formed Young 
Ladies' Retrenchment Associations in the wards of the city, 
then in adjoining towns and counties. They all traveled 
extensively in connection with this work; and while urging 
the older sisters to take up the labor placed upon them, they did 
not fail to encourage the Young Ladies' departments or asso- 

The Eleventh ward of Salt Lake City had one of the 
strongest and best organizations in the city, although it was 
not one of the first. Among the best early associations were 
the Nineteenth, Thirteenth and Fourteenth wards, which 
were among the first ones organized after the original one in 
the Lion House; other early ones were the First ward, the 
Tenth, the Eighth, the Fourth, the Fifteenth, and the Six- 
teenth, which followed in the order given. 

The Eleventh ward association was organized by Miss 
Flora Shipp, under the direction of Sister Zina D. H. 
Young. The officers were: Mrs. Mary A. Freeze, president; 
Mrs. Ellis Shipp, Mrs. Jane Freeze and Miss Mary Jones, 


66 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

counselors; Mrs. Maggie Shipp, secretary. The minutes of 
the first meeting- held are highly interesting, and as they are 
a fair example of all similar meetings held in those early 
times, they are here appended: 

Minutes of the Eleventh ward Retrenchment Society, 
October 18, 1872. First meeting held at the residence of 
Mrs. Mary A. Freeze, corner of Second South and Seventh 
East streets. 

Singing "Hark, Ye Mortals." 

Prayer by President Mary A. Freeze. 

Hymn ' 'Hail to the Prophet. ' ' 

Roll called. 

An essay was read by Counselor Mary Jones on "What 
is Vulgarity?" Select reading by Counselor Ellis R. Shipp, 
entitled "Female Education." 

President Mary A. Freeze said: "This is a new business 
to me; still I wish to advance and answer to every call. By 
speaking, we gain confidence and improve in our language; also 
by speaking new ideas are elicited. Let us exert ourselves 
to bring more of the girls to our meetings. As Sister Eliza 
R. Snow says, let us retrench in our ignorance and assist 
each other to conquer our failings. By comforting others, we 
not only do them good, but we also comfort ourselves, and 
this principle will appear more plain and beautiful." 

Counselor Ellis R. Shipp 's remarks: "Retrenchment is 
like Mormonism it embraces everything which is good. 
We should be diligent in this duty, for it is a commandment 
from President Young. We often wish we could compre- 
hend fully what is meant by obeying the commandments of 
God. I think it is obedience to the Priesthood, the servants 
of God. President Young has said if we would carry out his 
counsels, he would lead us unto eternal life. If we are not 
faithful, depression follows, and the righteous suffer for the 
sins of the wicked." 

Counselor Mary Jones ' 'knew we were doing right. Hoped 
the girls would attend the meetings; and we will try and 
benefit and interest them." 

Counselor Jane Freeze remarked that it would be better 


to change the hour of meeting:, so that it might be more con- 
venient for the girls. 

Secretary Maggie C. Shipp said: "Well, girls, let us 
improve in one particular especially, and that is in this habit 
of gossiping. You know that it is natural for women to 
slander, and how true it is that an offense appears much 
more offensive after being repeatedly told. Let us deal in 
encouragement. Our lives are but short to prepare us for 
celestial glory; then let us awaken and comprehend our posi- 
tion. Always have a kind word for every one. O seek for 
the Spirit of God, that you may accomplish good." 

Appointments were made for next meeting. Adjourned 
for one week. 

Hymn "O Ye Mountains High." 

Benediction by Mrs. Ellis R. Shipp. 

What a world of thought and struggle is comprised in 
the brief records which have come down to us from these 
first meetings of the young women of Zion! No Primary 
Association, and practically no Sunday School, had prepared 
the young people to stand upon their feet and express in elo- 
quent phrase their thoughts . There were no Church schools 
then to train the young to think logically and connectedly on 
religious subjects. Think of it, sheltered and educated 
daughters of the present day\ Utah was still a hard country; 
pioneer conditions held strong* men and sturdy women in 
thrall. Schools were taught in every town and hamlet, but 
under difficulties, for lack of books and means. In some 
parts of the country the Bible was the school reader and the 
home instructor. Hand looms still whizzed out their homely 
music, and cook stoves were a costly luxury. 

Without training, and with only the bare elements of 
education, these pioneer girls, the daughters of pioneers, 
came forward to answer to the call made upon them. To 
retrench, to improve, to grow and to develop was their 
object. And how well they have carried on their mission 

68 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

is well attested by the results that have followed their 

Other associations outside of Salt Lake City held inter- 
esting" sessions and adopted similar resolutions. One of the 
first organized was that in Bountiful, Davis County. Their 
resolutions are as follows: 

Inasmuch as it is the wish and counsel of our beloved 
President Brig-ham Young that the young ladies should be 
organized into Co-operative Retrenchment Associations, we 
desire to show our willingness in the same by stepping- for- 
ward and adopting- the following resolutions: 

Resolved 1st, That we strive to the best of our ability to 
carry out the counsel and instructions that fall from the lips 
of those that are sent to counsel us, well knowing- that it is 
for our g-ood. 

2nd, That we cease to run after the fashions of the 
world, but consult our own taste, and strive to dress in a 
neat and becoming- manner, with a view to health, long- life 
and happiness . 

3rd, That we speak no evil of one another, nor of those 
placed over us; but rather seek to uphold them by our faith 
and prayers, that they may have wisdom to teach us the prin- 
ciples of life and salvation. 

4th, That we give more of our time and attention to the 
reading- of good books, especially the publications of the 
Church; and seek to improve our minds and store them with 
useful information, that in the future we may be able to 
assist those under our care. 

5th, That we use no hot drinks, but carefully adhere to 
the Word of Wisdom, as made known to us for our benefit, 
that we may live long on the earth to be useful daughters of 

6th, That inasmuch as any of us have been giiilty of 
using immodest or unbecoming language, that we cease to do 
so from this time forth, and endeavor to cultivate that mod- 
esty which is so becoming to young- ladies in every society 
and association in life. 


The following- officers were chosen: Susan Grant, presi- 
dent; Rosetta Eldredge, Nancy Willey, Mary A. Call, Mary 
Standford, Helen Ellis, Caroline Corbridge, Rachel Brown, 
Lucy Fackrell, counselors; Jane Alice Crosby, secretary. 

This work begun in Salt Lake City rapidly extended into 
every city and town in Utah, as well as into such surround- 
ing- states and territories as held communities of the Latter- 
day Saints. Gradually, regrular programs for the evening's 
exercises were adopted. Manuscript papers began to take a 
permanent place in the programs, supplemented by essays, 
select readings and recitations. Program committees were 
appointed, and regrular provision was thus made for each 
evening's work and entertainment. 

Who may describe the labors of the women who began 
and carried forward for years the organization and oversight 
of the various local and later the stake associations of 
the three great women's organizations of the Church! Like 
the companies who crossed the plains, these women made the 
hardest trip a pleasure -jaunt, and the most forbidding 
journey was turned into a merry picnic. The woman who 
now-a-days boards a luxurious car, secures a sleeper, and 
finds herself the next morning at the farther end of the state, 
can have little conception of the journey that began in Salt 
Lake City or some nearby large town in a lumber wagon, 
or at best in a spring wagon which never sprang once but to 
jolt twice; and whose primary destination was always "the 
next town" only, even if the "next town" came finally to be 
St. George in the south, or Bear Lake on the north. How 
the travelers were to get on from town to town was as much 
a mystery as it came later to be a matter of history. A most 
implicit reliance upon an overruling Providence was more 
necessary than a piece of candle in the small satchel; and 
both were vital parts of a traveler's outfit in those days. 

70 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

Providence never betrayed the trust! The candle might 
sputter and go out in the middle of a bad piece of road; 
the women, being their own teamsters, might sometimes lose 
the way on a dark night; or that same candle might get itself 
forgotten in the press of other preparations, and the good 
sister might wake tip in the night with a sudden illness or 
want, to find herself candleless and forlorn. But Providence, 
that sweet and constant light in dark places, was always very 
close at hand to supply every righteous need. God could 
and did heal their ailments. After a trying experience, gen- 
erally a good bishop or some liberal-minded brother would be 
moved upon to hitch up his team and carry the sisters one or 
even two stages on their journey. 

Who, indeed, that once knew them can forget the simple 
delights of that early morning start across the grey-green 
valley, or up through the rugged canyon defile; so early that 
even the meadow larks were barely twittering to the fledg- 
lings in the nest; the smell of the pungent sagebrush, the 
purple shadows on the mountains that blended and merged 
into riotous harmony of color; the still roads, upon which the 
fleeing night had laid fingers of motionless silence! And 
the spell of newness and youth and growth which was upon 
all the face of nature! This it was which thrilled the soul of 
the travelers with the freshness and renewal of uncon- 
taminated atmosphere. The Spirit of God seemed very near 
on such mornings, and there was the presence of guardian 
angels. Sweet communion marked the progress of the daily 
journey. Prayer-meetings, experiences, testimonies, heal- 
ings and divers profitable discussions occupied the hours. The 
singer in the company would pipe up the strains of "Come, 
come, ye Saints," or "O my Father;" the others would 
join in and then even birds would listen to the sweet sounds 
of praise, and the prairie dogs would stand on their hind 


legs like little grey posts, wondering- at the strange melody. 

Those were the days before cars and telephones had 
developed the "strenuous life" and consequent nervous- 
prostration habit. One can find traces of these times and 
customs in our remote villages of today; and poor, indeed, is 
the memory and experience of any Mutual Improvement 
worker that does not contain some chapter which answers to 
this description. 

For twenty years the organizing" and visiting" of the asso- 
ciations was done by representatives of the three women's 
organizations, traveling- together, in company perhaps with 
some local or stake organization official. A stake officer 
in one town whose husband or son owned a carriag-e or 
spring- wag-on, might drive the team herself, or press into 
service her boy or a neig-hbor's son; and around that stake 
the Salt Lake party would g-o, sending- word ahead by the 
prized local telegraph. When, in after years, regular confer- 
ences began to be called, it became quite usual to devote the 
Friday before the reg-ular stake conference to the holding: of 
a conference of the three women's societies. The morning- 
meeting's would probably be devoted to the Primary Associa- 
tion, the afternoon to the Relief Society and the evening" ses- 
sion to the Young" Ladies' meeting". It is an interesting 
fact that in those days the audiences at all these meetings 
would be very much the same, the speakers were generally 
the same and the topics were not very dissimilar. Thus was 
engendered a delightful unanimity and harmony in the 
ranks of these three sister organizations. 

After President Elmina S. Taylor, in 1880, was made 
general president of the Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement 
Associations, she traveled thousands of miles in this primitive 
fashion, accompanying Sisters Eliza R. Snow, Zina D. H. 
Young, M. I. Home, Emmeline B. Wells, Louie B. Felt or Lillie 

72 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

T. Freeze. These sisters represented the various interests 
of the Relief Society, Silk Association, Grain Saving- move- 
ment, Retrenchment, Woman's Exponent, Y. L. M. I. A. 
and the Primary Association. There would be sent out from 
Salt Lake City a representative of each of the three large 
general organizations, and these three sisters would naturally 
attend each of the three conferences held on the Friday. Of 
course all would be invited to speak at each meeting, and 
those who were fortunate enough to be present on some of 
those glorious occasions will bear testimony to the fact that 
those impromptu, inspired discourses were indeed eloquent 
outpourings of the soul . 

The principle of true evolution is as applicable to the 
growth of an organization as it is to the development of an 
acorn. That which grows rapidly and attains maturity too soon 
is as apt to die quickly as is the :ourd or the poppy. It 
came naturally to pass that the M . I . Associations were first 
encompassed in a private parlor. Then one, two, a half 
dozen wards began small and comparatively insignificant 
associations. The work spread from ward to ward, until the 
whole Church saw these vigorous associations numbered as 
an integral part of its spiritual organization. When the local 
branches had multiplied and gathered sufficient strength, 
there arose a necessity for a stake and finally a central organ- 
ization fora general head was necessary, to unify, strength- 
en and direct the work. The time was then ripe for combin- 
ing the integral parts into one perfect whole, each complete 
in itself, and each entirely independent in its sphere, but 
all bound together in perfect unity. 





There are very few women in the Church who have done 
as much for the Mutual Improvement " cause" as the sub- 
ject of this sketch. In that service has been embraced all 
the inspiration that comes from pure sacrifice, and all the 

power which emanates from 
unselfish labor. Sister Freeze 
was the president of one of 
the very first organizations of 
the original Retrenchment 
Associations, the Eleventh 
ward; and she has Deen in 
office continuously since that 

Mary was the daughter of 
James Lewis Burnham and 
Mary A. Huntley Burnham. 
The Burnhams are of the 
best Puritan stock, coming 
to America in 1620. They 
were landed proprietors in 
England, but they gave up 
everything and emigrated to 
America for the same reason 
that two hundred years later 
their descendants moved out 
into the trackless deserts of 
western America. They trace their line back in an unbroken 
chain to the year 1200 A. D. Mary was born in Nauvoo, 
October 12th, 1845, four days after the death of her father. 
Will our modern luxurious environment permit us to imagine 
the sorrow of that death and that birth a widow left alone 
with four little children, poor, and utterly without home or 
relatives? Saints were very kind to the widow, but the con- 
dition of poverty was hers to meet and overcome. Her rela- 
tives in the east would gladly have sent means to her if she 
would have consented to retiirn and renounce her unpopular 


74 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

religion; but she was a Saint, and she had put her hand to 
the plow. She was later sealed for time to Joseph Young, 
the president of the quorum of Seventy. 

Mary was brought by her mother to Salt Lake valley in 
1852, and located in Bountiful. She was an anxious student, 
and was qualified, when eighteen years of age, to assist in 
teaching school. The principal of the school was James 
Perry Freeze, and to him she was married in March, 1863. 
The young couple came to Salt Lake shortly after their mar- 
riage, and settled in the Eleventh ward. In 18 71 Mary was 
called to preside over the newly organized Retrenchment 
Association in that ward, and accepted the call with that 
gentle dignity and humility which has always seemed so 
much a part of her character. Her husband felt it his duty 
to take three other young wives; and in that view he was 
sustained by that heroine, his first wife. To witness the 
love and harmony which has existed in his family from that 
day to this has been an object lesson of divine virtue. When 
one of the four young women died, the other three mourned 
her as deeply as if she were an own sister. Whatever the 
world may say or think about the principle of plural mar- 
riage, it has given to Utah's history a group of such 
heavenly women as Mary Burnham Freeze, and her associate, 
Lillie T. Freeze. No evil could possibly come of such holy 
examples of devoted love and pure unselfishness. 

In 1878, on the 14th day of September, the first stake 
organization of the Y. L. M. I. A. was effected in Salt Lake 
City, and Mary A. Freeze was chosen president. She had 
proven a most faithful shepherd over the little flock put in 
her charge in the Eleventh ward. Her association was 
everywhere spoken of as the leading one in the Church. She 
had the wisdom to choose the best and brightest assistants in 
her work, and she gave them scope to follow their own 
plans and ideas. In all the work done by Sister Freeze, that 
power of surrounding all she does with ah atmosphere of up- 
lifting, purifying spirituality is her most marked and vital 
characteristic. She has lived her whole life in the sanctuary 
of prayer and self-sacrifice, and the radiance of that altar 
shines out of her soul to illumine all who come near her. 
She carried some of her strong workers from the Eleventh 
ward into the stake organization. Margaret C. Roberts, 


Louie Felt, Clara Conrad, Ellis R. Shipp these helped in 
the new labor. 

In 1878 Sister Freeze took a trip east, visiting" Washing- 
ton, as well as other large cities. She spent some time in 
Pennsylvania visiting-, in company with her husband, his 
nearest relatives. In 1885 she took up another important 
labor she went to Logan and began the work for her dead. 
She had secured records carrying- her family back to 1200, 
and giving: thousands of names for Temple ordinances. 
While in Logan she was chosen to act as a Temple worker; 
and when the Salt Lake Temple was completed, she was 
called to labor there by President Snow, he himself going- to 
her house to issue the invitation. Here she has labored 
faithfully and well. 

Sister Freeze was chosen by President Elmina S. Taylor, 
October 3rd, 1898, to act upon her board, and she continues 
in that position. She has visited most of the stakes since 
she became an aid to the General Board. She was greatly 
beloved in her own board, and they tendered to her two 
beautiful receptions in token of their esteem, one in 1895, and 
one in 1898, when she was released from stake work in order 
to go a step higher. 

Every one who knows Sister Freeze is the better for that 
knowledge. To be her intimate friend is to acquire a liberal 
spiritual education. To be her associate in eternity will 
mean the highest exaltation possible for a woman to attain. 


Lona Pratt Eldredge was the daughter of that gifted and 
inspired writer and prophet, Parley P. Pratt; her mother 
was Agatha Walker. Lona was born April 15th, 1850. She 
was of a refined, sensitive nature, full of zeal, yet withal 
easily discouraged. With the aid of love and appreciation 
she could have accomplished wonders in this work; but with- 
out that incentive, she shrank within herself, and in later 
years was lost to public affairs. She is tall, stately in 
carriage, and with a winning, persuasive personality, cover- 
ing an inner sensitiveness with an outer cloak of pride. She 
was a quick student, and soon mastered the common branches 
of our pioneer education and was ready to go out into the 



/ **m \ 








ranks of wage-earners when but fifteen years old. She had 
need, for her widowed mother was glad of assistance in rear- 
ing her family. Lona secured a room in Sister Ann A. 
Gheen Kimball's commodious home in the Nineteenth ward, 
and here she opened a school for all grades. She was emi- 
nently successful, and her pupils soon grew to love her as a 
companion while they did not forget to respect her as a 
teacher and guide. It was in this very room that the first 
ward organization of the Young Ladies' Retrenchment Asso- 
ciation had its inception, as has been told in this history. 
Lona carried on her work in the association for some months , 
but in the year 1870 she was married to Elnathan Eldredge, 
and one year later she removed with her husband to settle 
up the new country in Bear Lake stake. She became the 
mother of eight children, and has lived a peaceful, prosper- 
ous life since that day. She is now a resident of Salt Lake 
City. In speaking of her labors in the inception of this 
work, she says with emotion, "those were the happiest days 
of my life." 


The subject of this sketch was the ninth child of her 
parents, who were Joseph and Mary Isabella Home. She 
was reared in an atmosphere of sobriety, prudence and rev- 
erence. She partook largely of the influence of her surround- 
ings and was ever known as a most exemplary child and 
woman. She was born in Salt Lake City, in August, 1851, 
followed the usual course of pioneer living, and acquired the 
usual pioneer education. She attended the University of 
Utah when it first opened in the old Council House. When 
the Young Ladies' Retrenchment Associations were formally 
organized, she was chosen to fill the office of president of the 
Fourteenth ward association. She married in the early spring 
of 1872, and died in the late fall of the same year, leaving a 
babe behind her. Her young husband, William S. Burton, 
eldest son of Bishop Robert T. Burton, was crushed with the 
blow, and many recall the deep grief which the death of this 
amiable young wife caused her family and friends. She was 
of a modest, retiring disposition, but was willing and eager 
in the service of the Lord. 

78 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 


Flora Shipp was born at Edenburg, Johnson county, 
Indiana, January 31, 1848. She was the daughter of Austin 
Shipp and Laura Caroline Farns worth. She died Friday, 
December 15, 1905, at the L. D. S. hospital. 

These few details would not betray the sensitive poet 
soul of the gentle, fair-haired girl who was the joy of her 
friends and the enemy of no living- soul. Flora was ever 
keenly attuned to emotion, but she had received in her early 
youth the testimony of the truth, and none of the trials and 
vicissitudes of her life ever shook that faith. She was also 
one of the early heroines who came out in obedience to the 
call and helped to make possible the cause of Retrenchment. 
She was married to Theodore Curtis handsome, debonair 
brilliant Theodore Curtis. But with his defection from the 
faith of her father, she left him, and remained for years a 
sorrowing- but faithful young mother to her children. She 
was a writer of no common promise. At one time, she had 
a great box full of manuscript stories and took them to a good 
man for counsel as to what disposition to make of these treas- 
ures of her brain. He was not an imaginative man; he 
hewed close to fact, and dropped his plummet only into the 
wells of hard practicalities. Flora was told to destroy them 
all and destroy them she did. She was too retiring and 
modest to put out much of her work after that, and as a con- 
sequence, we have suffered the loss of some beautiful contri- 
butions to Utah literature. She left one long story, however, 
which may some day see the light. She was full of that in- 
definable charm which is likened to flowers and soft breezes. 
She was true to the last, and left two splendid sons, Theodore 
E., and Clarence S. Her son Theodore, who writes for the 
Era, is a faithful example of her own modest worth. 


Mrs. Julina L. Smith was one of the early devotees to 
the cause of Retrenchment; indeed, she has never departed 
from the early ideals planted in her young mind when Presi- 
dent Young and Sister Eliza R. Snow pleaded so eloquently 
with the daughters of Zion to eschew all evil, and cleave to 


purity, simplicity and righteousness. Mrs. Smith was born 
June 18, 1849, and is the first wife of President Joseph F. 
Smith today; but she went into the celestial order with all 
the courage and unselfishness which those early trials de- 
manded. She was a tender nurse and sympathizer with the 
delicate young first wife of her husband, and has been a 
mother and a friend to all his later wives. She was one of 
the first duly qualified midwives in this state, and she exerted 
her widely sought skill for her husband's family, for the poor 
and destitute, as well as for the sojourners by the sea, when 
she was away upon her mission to the Sandwich Islands. 
She is the mother of eleven children, ten of whom are still 
living; and she is grandmother of nineteen. If there is a 
more exemplary mother, wife, and friend than this noble 
woman, the writer has yet to meet such a paragon. 

Mrs. Smith is now a member of the General Board of 
the Relief Society. "The heart of her husband doth safely 
trust in her. She will do him good and not 

evil, all the days of her life. She seeketh wool and flax, and 
worketh willingly with her hands. * * * She riseth 
also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, 
and a portion to her maidens. . * * * She is not 
afraid of the snow for her household; for all her household 
are clothed with scarlet. Her husband is 

known in the gates when he sitteth among the elders of the 
land. Strength and honor are her clothing; 

and she shall rejoice in time to come. * * * Her 
children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and 
he praiseth her." 

If a woman is to be known by her children, surely Sister 
Smith will not fail of praise; for her sons sit in the councils 
of the priesthood, and her daughters are among the mothers 
in Israel. 



The Young Men's Mutual Improvement Association organized. 
The name Retrenchment Association changed to Young Ladies' 
Mutual Improvement Association. Stake organizations effected. 
Central or General Board organized. 

A VERY full chapter of Utah history was made in the 
* *- first half of the seventies. President Young- was in- 
spired to set in order all the quorums of the priesthood, to 
organize stakes and to regulate the auxiliary organizations. 
He was also devotedly laboring to complete the Temple at 
St. George, while choosing sites for other temples in Manti 
and Logan. However, he had plenty of time always to con- 
sider the needs of a most important element in the commu- 
nity the young people; and so it came about that he under- 
took the task of organizing the young men of Zion into asso- 
ciations with similar aims and purposes to those which 
formed the now flourishing associations for the girls. 

The story of the organization of the young men, with 
the title chosen and afterwards adopted by the girls, was told 
graphically at the June conference in 1905 by Junius F. 
Wells, the man who can best tell it. And the story of the 
beginning of the brother organization fits naturally into the 
recital of our auxiliary beginnings. Brother Wells said: 

With respect to the organization of the Young Men's 
associations, it was brought about through the inspiration of 
the Holy Spirit. It came at a time when we needed some- 
thing to inspire the youth of our people and to prepare them 
for the greater labor and duty that was before them. So far 
as my connection with it is concerned, it came in this wise: 
I found myself upon a mission before I was eighteen years 


old, standing for the first time in my life before an audience 
to speak. I was in Liverpool, six thousand miles away from 
home. ' I was introduced by the president, and being" a son 
of President Wells, there was much expected of me. It took 
the president of the branch several minutes to introduce me, 
but it took me just one and one-quarter minutes to say all 
that I knew. I desired in my heart that my brothers should 
be better prepared than I was for such a position. That 
thought was uppermost in my mind. I presume Brother 
Lyman could testify of it, and perhaps President Smith will 
recall it, because I was on a mission with them at the time 
and they know that if there was anything- that characterized 
my efforts it was to benefit the youth and prepare the young- 
men to perform missions. 

When I came home, I was called upon to visit a number 
of the wards; and the preparation of the youth of Israel for 
missionary work was the subject of my discourse very large- 
ly. There were associations of the young ladies of which 
Sister Eliza R. Snow was the genius. I met with her and 
she spoke of the need of an organization of the young men. 
On Thursday or Friday before the 10th of June, 1874, my 
father came home from the President's office, and I met him 
at the front door. He said: "The President wants you to 
organize the young men." I asked my father what I should 
do. "Well," he said, "you'd better do it." 

The spirit of the work came with the call, and I knew 
just what to do. We called a meeting in the Thirteenth 
ward. It was announced in the Sunday evening service that 
a meeting would be held to organize the young men's asso- 
ciation in that hall on Wednesday evening. I called on Pres- 
ident Young, but could not see him until Wednesday morn- 
ing. I asked if he would be present I expected he would 
be there to take charge, as I thought I had been called sim- 
ply to make the preparations. President Young was not feel- 
ing well, and he said he hardly thought he would venture 
out that evening. He turned to President George Q. Cannon 
who was present, and asked him if he could attend the 
meeting, and President Cannon said a meeting of his quorum 
had been called for that date so he could not be there. Then 
the President commenced to talk of the organization. The 
question came up as to w r hat the society should be called; 

82 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

and as nearly as I can recall his words they were as follows: 
' 'We want to organize the young- men into an association 
an improvement association a mutual improvement asso- 
ciation Young Men's Mutual Improvement Association. 
There's your name." That is how we came by our name. 
Then he went on speaking in regard to our exercises. He 
said we should have a roll of all the members, and at the first 
meeting commence at the head of the roll and call upon them 
to arise and speak. Said he, "We want to get our boys into 
the habit of trying to say something in the name of the 
Lord. More people have received testimonies on their feet 
than down on their knees praying for them." 

This was the extent of the instructions we received. To- 
wards evening I called at the President's office hoping to 
meet President Cannon, but he was not there. I remember 
walking down the Theatre hill; I never had such feelings or 
thoughts as filled my bosom. I was very humble and prayer- 
ful and greatly desired that the Lord would give us success 
in our undertaking. When I reached the Thirteenth ward, 
Brother B. Morris Young, son of President Young, was there 
and also the bishop of the ward. Brother Young acted as 
secretary, and was very willing to assist me. We had the 
greatest difficulty in persuading three or four young men to 
come to the stand. A pledge was given to the one who 
offered prayer. He agreed to open the meeting by prayer 
provided he was not called upon to speak. I went back into 
the vestry before the commencement of the meeting for a 
moment of silent prayer, and when I came back to the room, 
I felt great confidence. The way seemed clear and I spoke 
for about fifty minutes. The Spirit of the Lord was there 
and those who were present felt it. The bishops, some of 
them, since that time have told me of it. The result was 
that a vote was taken and they all voted for the organization. 
Brother Henry A. Woolley was called to be president, 
Brothers B. Morris Young and Heber J. Grant were counsel- 
ors, Brother Hyrum H. Goddard was made secretary. When 
we called for members, seventeen or eighteen enlisted. That 
is the story of the organization. 

Afterwards I visited a number of settlements. St. 
George was one of them. Brother B. Morris Young was as- 
sociated with the organization then and has been active in it 


ever since. I went to Brigham City and organized the as- 
sociation there. Then I was called to go on a mission to the 
states of Illinois and Missouri. The Mutual Improvement 
Association work was taken up by Brother Milton H. Hardy 
and others. After I returned from my mission we organized 
a central committee to push this work. I think I have been 
present and assisted in the organization of one hundred and 
ten societies. 

In 1877 President Young completed the organization of 
the stakes in Zion, Bear Lake being the last one. Immedi- 
ately after, he was taken ill, the last week in August, and in 
a few days the weary eyes were closed, the busy brain was 
stilled, and the great pioneer who had dominated the 
West for so many stirring years was quietly sleeping in his 
last earthly bed. 

The feeling of dismay which followed the death of one 
of the greatest leaders and men among this people was 
gradually dispersed by the grave and dignified admin- 
istration of the Twelve Apostles, under the wise lead- 
ership of President John Taylor. He, too, was a hero 
and a statesman. As he had -stood by the Prophet at his 
death, so now President Taylor took up the role of leader- 
ship, without faltering and without fear. To him was left 
the task of completing the regulation of all the affairs of the 
Church; and royally and grandly did he discharge this duty. 
The work among the women was left by President Taylor, 
as it had been by President Young, to the care of Sister 
Eliza R. Snow. 

It had been the wish and purpose of President Young, at 
the time the Young Men's Association was organized, to 
change the name of the Young Ladies' Retrenchment Asso- 
ciations to Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement Associations; 
but this was not accomplished in his lifetime . Soon after his 
death the change was made by Sister Eliza R. Snow, the new 
title being adopted locally; for there were, as yet, no stake 


or general organizations. In the year 1878, the first stake 
organization* of the Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement 
Association was effected, under the direction of Sister E. R. 

Salt Lake Stake board was organized September 14th, 
1878. Mrs. Mary A. Freeze, by a unanimous vote of the 
sisters, was made stake president over this largest and most 

*The division into stakes is peculiar to our Church organ- 
ization. And as the Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement Associa- 
tions follow the same pattern, it may be well to give a brief outline 
of this ecclesiastical machinery. No other such compact, simple 
and altogether perfect organization exists upon the earth. Nor 
should there, for it was revealed from heaven to the Prophet Joseph 

The people living in a small town are organized into a ward. 
This ward limit can be compared to what is called by some sects a 
parish, and in civil parlance it is termed a precinct. The larger 
towns or cities are divided into ecclesiastical wards of suitable and 
convenient proportions. A ward rarely contains more than twelve 
hundred or fewer than two hundred people. If there are fewer than 
this a temporary organization, with a presiding elder, is formed 
until a sufficient number of people permits the regular ward to be 
organized. Over the ward, a bishop and two counselors are in- 
stalled; under them are the ward quorums of the priesthood, the 
priests, the teachers and the deacons. In this ward are also formed 
a local Relief Society, a Sunday school, a Young Men's Mutual Im- 
provement Association, a Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement Asso- 
ciation, and a Primary Association, each with its corps of officers. 
Once each year a ward conference is held at which all these officers 
are presented for the suffrage of the people. All things, therefore, 
are done by common consent. 

The cities and towns comprised in a county are usually formed 
into a stake. If the town becomes a city, one or more stakes may 
be organized therein, as was recently done in Salt Lake City. A 
nresident and two counselors are set to preside in the stake, and 
associated with this presidency is a high council, consistin~ of 
twelve high priests. These officers have the spiritual affairs of the 
whole stake, with its bishoos, its quorums of the Priesthood and its 
auxiliary organizations, under their charge. 

Over all the stakes is set the quorum of the twelve apostles, 
with the president of the Church and his two counselors above 
them in rank and authority. Thus, then, the line runs down: from 
the presidency of the Church to the twelve apostles; from these to 
the presidents of stakes, then to the bishops of wards; and then on 
to the local and auxiliary associations. 


important stake association. Subsequently she chose Mrs. 
Louie Felt and Mrs. Clara Y. Conrad as her counselors. By 
this time the custom of having- two coimselors instead of six 
was adopted in the local associations. 

The organization of stake boards was rapidly carried 
forward, during: the next two years 1878-80, under the 
charge of Sister Snow, who was also busy in other fields of 
progress and education for women. 

In the summer of 1880, President John Taylor instructed 
Sister Snow to issue a call for all the women of the Church 
to assemble, as he desired to form three general heads, 
giving each of the auxiliary associations a controlling 
board, the Relief Society, the Young Ladies' Mutual Im- 
provement Association and the Primary Association. Ac- 
cordingly, two meetings were held in the Assembly Hall, 
Salt Lake City, on June 19th, 1880, at which Sister Snow 

In the morning, the general organization of the Relief 
Society was effected, with Eliza R. Snow as general presi- 
dent. Her scope was wide according to the records, as she 
is termed president of woman's work of the Church in all the 

At noon on that day, after Sister Eliza R. Snow had 
been set apart for her great field of labor, a number of the 
sisters went to the home of Sister Bathsheba W. Smith for 
dinner. Among them was Sister Elmina S. Taylor of the 
Fourteenth ward, Salt Lake City. In the general conversa- 
tion at table, Sister Snow looked keenly at Sister Taylor, 
and after the little preliminary "hem," which usually pref- 
aced her remarks, and which was the only reminder of the 
consumption that had so nearly taken her away in middle 
life, she remarked quietly, yet with that incisive voice which 
arrested every ear: 

"Well, Sister Taylor, have you chosen your counselors?" 

86 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

With equally dignified mien and equally incisive voice, 
that now rang- out somewhat sharply because of the surprise, 
Sister Taylor replied: 

' 'For what?" 

"We have decided to make you president of the Mutual 
Improvement Associations in all the Church," replied Sister 

"I shall not act," retorted the woman who had shrunk 
from publicity all her life. "I cannot act in that capacity." 

However, with the wise arguments which always con- 
vince a Saint who desires to be one, Sister Taylor's scruples 
were overcome, and she was voted in at the afternoon meet- 

In the afternoon, there was also organized the Central 
Board of the Primary Associations. Mrs. Louie B. Felt was 
made president of this board, and a most efficient and faith- 
ful officer she was, and is, for she still occupies that exalted 
station. The Primary Associations have done as much, per- 
haps, towards making good and fruitful history as any aux- 
iliary organization in the Church. They have printed a 
short history of their work and the record thereof is both 
valuable and interesting. 

To return to our own history: 

Mrs. Taylor chose a wife of President John Taylor, Mrs. 
Margaret Y. Taylor, as her first counselor. President Taylor 
was not related to Bishop George H. Taylor and his wife El- 
mina, although they were intimate friends in the eastern states, 
and both lived in the Fourteenth ward, Salt Lake City. Her 
second counselor was Miss Martha Home (later Mrs.Tingey), 
a daughter of Joseph and Mary Isabella Home, and one 
of Zion's most exemplary daughters. The secretary chosen 
was Miss Louie Wells, a daughter of President D. H. 
Wells and Mrs. Emmeline B. Wells; while the treasurer, 
Mrs. Fannie Young Thatcher, was a daughter of President 


President Elmina S. Taylor 

First Counselor Margaret Y. Taylor Second Counselor Martha t Horne 

First Counselor Maria Y. Dougall 


Young-. Sister Elmina S. Taylor was at that time engaged 
in housekeeping and rearing children; she was also filling 
an important office in the Relief Society, and consequently 
was a busy woman. But what she undertook to do, she did 
well. vSister Eliza R. Snow, therefore, relinquished in part 
the care and responsibility of the Young- Ladies' Association, 
and the burden was assumed by the new president, assisted 
by her chosen officers. 

Into this history there is now introduced the name of 
one of Zion's greatest women a woman whose clearness of 
vision, firmness of purpose, wisdom and executive ability 
placed her side by side with Eliza R. Snow this woman 
is Elmina S. Taylor. Tried and tested in the furnace of 
affliction and sorrow, the character of this faithful friend 
and counselor was beautified and enriched and made ready 
for the eternal crown of peace which now encircles her 

Sister E. S. Taylor began her labors vigorously. The 
first meeting which she attended officially was a local one in 
Farmers ward, at which she and her counselors were present. 
Thus began a most energetic work. Stakes were to be 
visited yearly and sometimes semi-annually. Letters were 
received in gradually increasing numbers, and for years most 
of these were personally addressed to President E. S. Taylor, 
personally answered by her, and the expense thereof borne 
by her. Naturally, the work at this time was largely ex- 
perimental; each ward planned its own course of study, the 
work of the General Board as well as of the stake boards be- 
ing for some years that of encouragement and general help- 
fulness. Some knowledge of the magnitude of the work done 
by Sister E. S. Taylor during the next ten years may be ob- 
tained from the fact that she made between three and four 
hundred visits during that period, traveling thousands of 
miles, mostly by team; and visiting some of the nearby 

88 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

stakes two or three times a year in addition to the regular 
scheduled visits. 

At the time the General Board was organized in 1880, 
the Salt Lake stake board was a power in the land, and its 
meetings and deliberations were a stimulus and an example 
to the other stakes. After the installation of the General 
Board, the Salt Lake stake officers were invited to meet at 
the home of Sister E. S. Taylor, and here, for ten years, the 
joint affairs of the two boards were considered. The mem- 
bers of the Salt Lake stake board were often invited by Sis- 
ter Taylor to accompany her on her trips, and she in turn 
gathered help and inspiration from association with these 
active workers in the stake capacity. 

It was in these meetings that she became acquainted 
with the character and labors of Mrs. Maria Y. Dougall, 
who was then acting as counselor to the Salt Lake stake 
president, Mary A. Freeze. In the general work Sister 
Taylor was assisted more or less by her counselors; but Sister 
Margaret Y. Taylor felt obliged to resign her position after the 
death of her husband in 1887, and then Sister E. S. Taylor 
looked about her for another counselor. Mrs. Maria Y. 
Dougall had been an active worker in the M. I. A. since it 
was first organized. She was a dignified young matron, of 
queenly manners, and withal humble and true to the Gospel; 
She was a worthy child of her father, Brigham Young, and 
a gracious and wise daughter of Zion. To her Sister Taylor 
turned when she was obliged to part with her first- chosen 
counselor; and certainly she never had cause to regret this 
choice. Sister Tingey, her second counselor, who was al- 
ways very close to Sister Taylor's heart, remained in her 
place for twenty-five years, working in perfect harmony with 
her president and with the other counselors as well. 

In 1887, the General Board met with a serious loss in the 
death of the secretary, the beautiful and gifted Miss Louie 

OFTHE Y. L.M. i. A, 

* OFTHE Y. L.M. I. A 



Wells. Miss Mary E. Cook was called to take the place 
made vacant by the untimely death of Sister Wells. Miss 
Cook was a finely educated woman, a school teacher of great 
natural ability, who would have done a great deal of good in 
the position which she held had she remained in Utah, but 
she held her place only until the fall of 1891, when she went 
east to live. For eight years the general officers labored be- 
fore they were blessed and set apart for their office. 

In January, 1888, Sister Elmina S. Taylor and her two 
counselors met at the home of Sister Maria Y. Dougall, 
and there were blessed and set apart to their responsible 
positions by the First Presidency of the Church; President 
Wilford Woodruff pronounced the blessing on the head of 
Sister Taylor, President George Q. Cannon performing the 
like office for Sister Dougall, and President Joseph F. Smith 
giving the blessing to Sister Martha Home Tingey. From 
this hour a new stride forward was taken in the labors of 
the Y. L. M. I. A. There was a power and strength im- 
parted to the general work which had never before been felt. 
The scattered threads were gathered up, and in the hands of 
these women they began to be woven into a fabric of lasting 
and beautiful design. 

With the opening of the second decade of the General 
Board's history, a vital force and uplift was felt in every 
part of the work. Order, regularity and system began to 
take the place of experimental labor. A magazine was 
launched; new aid was called into the Board; a closer union 
was brought about between the Young Men's and Young 
Women's Associations. Lessons were mapped out for the 
associations, and printed in pamphlet form. A yearly fund 
was established. The traveling visits, both at home and 
throughout the stakes, increased wonderfully, and in all ave- 
nues great activity marked the last decade of the nineteenth 

90 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

This record will now concern itself with some of these 
various activities, in detail, taking- them up in the order of 
their occurrence; beginning with the establishment of a maga- 
zine, as an organ for the Y. L. M. I. Associations. 



Elmina Shepherd Taylor w r as born in Middlefield, 
Otseg-o county, state of New York, September 12, 1830, the 
same year in which the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day 
Saints was organized. 

Her parents, David S. and Rozella Bailey Shepherd, were 
honorable, intelligent people, much respected in the com- 
munity in which they lived. They were zealous members of 
the Methodist Episcopal church. 

Elmina was the eldest of three daughters. She was 
always a frail, delicate girl, but was endowed with strong 
convictions and a will to walk in the path of duty wherever 
it might lead. As a child, she was an ardent lover of nature. 
The whispering of the leaves upon the trees, the swaying of 
the branches, the gentle murmur of the brook, always had a 
soothing effect upon her sensitive temperament, and often, 
as she wandered in the woods near her home, she would lift 
her heart in prayer and gratitude to her heavenly Father, 
asking him in her simple, childish way for blessings upon her 
parents or upon her own head, according to her needs. 

At an early age she was sent to the public schools, and 
being a thoughtful, studious child, she soon became sufficient- 
ly advanced to enter the Hardwick academy, from whence, 
earnestly applying herself, she emerged before she was quite 
sixteen to engage in the labor of school teaching. At first 
her duties were confined to the rural districts, where, as was 
the custom at that time, she had to board around in payment 
for the tuition of pupils. Although she made many friends 
with whom she might have visited at pleasure, the prac- 
tice was so repugnant to her that she decided to branch out 


into broader fields, where the remuneration was sufficient to 
enable her to choose her own boarding- place. 

Through a cousin who was also a teacher in southern 
New York she received an excellent offer to take a school in 
Haverstraw, a beautiful town on the west bank of the Hud- 
son river, two hundred miles away from home where new 
but, happily, pleasant experiences awaited her. 

For a young: girl to go so far away in those days was an 
event of no little importance. At first her parents demurred, 
but finally yielded a reluctant consent to her earnest desire 
to make her own way in the world. So away she went, her 
first trip by rail a truly wonderful journey in many re- 

Miss Shepherd left her home on Friday. On reaching 
Albany she found that the ice over the Hudson river was 
breaking up, and the floating blocks had piled up in a huge 
mass. In order to meet her appointment the following Mon- 
day, she must cross this almost impassable stream. Her 
friends tried to dissuade her from making the attempt; but she 
had promised, and what was the breaking up of the ice com- 
pared with the breaking of her word? So she hired two 
strong Irish boatmen, who with skilful rowing, dodged the 
ice, and landed her safely on the other side, where she was 
soon most comfortably situated. 

Although Miss Shepherd and her cousin taught in differ- 
ent districts, they boarded together in a pleasant little home 
nestling at the foot of the Catskill mountains. Behind and 
above towered the great rocky cliffs, in front stretched the 
beautiful Hudson, dotted with shell -like boats and white 
sails, majestic steamers gliding gracefully to and fro, and in 
the distance the eastern river bank, where the wealthy men 
of New York built their palatial summer residences. It was 
a charming scene, and one that was always a source of de- 
light to her. 

From a child, Miss Shepherd had been spiritual -minded, 
and at about twenty years of age had naturally embraced the 
faith of her parents. She was an active, earnest worker in 
the church for about six years, but was not quite satisfied 
with some of their doctrines and tenets, while numerous 
things perplexed her. Sometimes she would go to her min- 
ister, hoping that he might explain and make things clear to 

92 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A, 

her doubting- mind, but alas! she would leave him more be- 
clouded than before. When she united herself with the 
church, she was very anxious to be baptized by immeirfion, 
the pattern set by our Savior; but that, her friends urged, 
was a foolish notion, so she had finally yielded to the pre- 
vailing custom of sprinkling 1 . 

During her sojourn in Haverstraw Miss Shepherd be- 
came acquainted with John Druce and his family, and a 
warm friendship sprang up between them. Mr. Druce was 
a trustee in the school in which her coiisin taught, and he 
was also a "Mormon" elder. One night he gave her some 
Mormon books, asking her if she woiild read them. 

" Prove all things and hold fast to that which is good," 
was one of the impressive things she had culled from her 
well-read Bible. Acting: upon this she scanned the books 
with a prayerful heart, and a sincere desire that her mind 
might be led aright. Her prayer was answered. She be- 
lieved the doctrine, and, although realizing what it meant 
to embrace such an unpopular religion, felt that she must 
carry out her convictions. Relying on the words of Jesus, 
"If any man will do my will, he shall know of the doctrine," 
she went into the waters of baptism on July 5, 1856, and, on 
being confirmed, she received, according to her own state- 
ment, a testimony of the truthfulness of the Gospel of Jesus 
Christ as revealed to the Prophet Joseph Smith, which re- 
mained with her until the last. 

She had taught school for about four years to the entire 
satisfaction of all concerned, when the time arrived for the 
trustees to decide on a teacher for another year. One of the 
trustees, a devout Methodist, objected to re-engaging Miss 
Shepherd, as he had made the startling discovery that she 
was a Mormon. The other, a wealthy, broadminded gentle- 
man, remarked that he did not care whether she was a Cath- 
olic, Protestant or Mormon, she had kept the best school they 
ever had had in that district. He prevailed, but upon their 
offering her the school, she declined to accept it, as she was 
about to take a much more important position. 

She was married August 31st, 1856, to Georg:e Hamil- 
ton Taylor, a young copper engraver, whom she had met at 
the home of the Druces. The late President, then Apostle, 
John Taylor performed the ceremony. On April 15th, 


1859, after paying- a visit to her parents, who were then 
living- in Wisconsin, they started for Utah by ox team, arriv- 
ing in the Great Salt Lake valley September 16th of the same 
year. In the spring- of 1860 they located in the Fourteenth 
ward, where they ever after resided. 

In accordance with a promise made to her through the 
gift of tongues, all her father's house came to Zion; although 
not one of them joined the Church. After the death of her 
mother, her father spent his declining: days at her home. 

Mrs. Taylor's public life beg-an when she was elected 
secretary of the Fourteenth ward Relief Society, December 
12th, 1867, a position she held for twenty-six years. Sep- 
tember 23rd, 1874, by request of Eliza R. Snow, she was 
appointed superintendent of the Y. L. M. I. A. of the same 
ward. On December 23rd, 1879, when the Relief Societies 
were organized into a stake capacity, with Mrs. M. Isabella 
Home as president of the Salt Lake stake, Mrs. Taylor was 
chosen her first counselor. She held the office for sixteen 
years, traveling considerably, instructing, exhorting- and 
comforting the members. It is a remarkable testimony to 
the executive capacity of our leader that she held all these 
various positions simultaneously, and did each full justice in 
its time and place. 

At the sisters' conference held June 19th, 1880, in the 
Assembly Hall, Salt Lake City, Sister Taylor was appointed 
president of the Young- Ladies' Mutual Improvement Asso- 
ciations in all the world. Since that time, she has traveled 
thousands of miles in the company of Eliza R. Snow, Zina 
D. H. Young-, Sarah M. Kimball, Emmeline B. Wells, M. 
Isabella Home and other leading- sisters, visiting- with 
the Relief Societies as well as the Mutual Improvement As- 

In 1891, the Y. L. M. I. A. became affiliated with the 
National Council of Women of the United States, and Mrs. 
Taylor thus became an ex-officio vice president of the organi- 
zation. She attended several eastern conventions, and she 
presided with dignity and wisdom over the meeting- held at 
the Chicag-o World's Fair in the interests of the Y. L.M.I. A. 

Sister Taylor was chosen as head of the Y. L. M. I. A. 
at a time when there was no General Board, no aids, no 
guides, no magazine no.r other publications for their work; 

94 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

no quarterly or yearly conferences nor conventions, either 
stake or general; no headquarters, not even any regular meet- 
ing's of the general officers. In fact, she was at the very 
beginning of all these, nay, the cause itself of some of these 
splendid outgrowths of M. I. work. She led her forces for- 
ward step by step, from an irregular, desultory corps of vol- 
unteers to a perfectly disciplined and admirably martialed 
host whose every movement was systematized and whose 
power for good was acknowledged as paramount in Israel. 
She assisted in the making of more history for the young 
women of Israel than any modern woman living or dead. 
She lay down into the earth at last garnered as a shock of 
corn ripened into full ear and ready for the glorious harvest 
of divine peace. Just how good and how great she was time 
cannot reveal the balance can only be struck by the Eternal 


Mrs. Taylor was born in Westport, Conn., on the 24th 
of April, 1837. Her father's name was Ebenezer Russell 
Young, also of Connecticut, but no known connection of 
Brigham Young. Both Mrs. Taylor's parents joined the 
Mormon Church; and when Margaret was about fourteen 
years old, she too was baptized. She was well educated for 
those days and was always a great reader, and a lover of 
books. She was married to President John Taylor, and emi- 
grated to the valley in 1858. She was well acquainted with 
Mrs. Elmina S. Taylor, they having formed a friendship in 
New York. When the Salt Lake stake Relief Society was 
organized, Sister Margaret Y. Taylor was chosen secretary 
of that society. She also served for a number of years as 
counselor to President Agnes Taylor Schwartz of the Four- 
teenth ward Relief Society. It was with great timidity and 
genuine mental suffering that she accepted and for seven 
years held the place of counselor to President Elmina S. Tay- 
lor in the original organization of the Board. Her nature 
shrank with keenest pain from publicity of all kinds. But 
she possessed a firm character, and was an ideal mother. If 
she had done no other work than to give to the world the nine 
splendid children she has borne, her years would be full of joy 


and eternity would crown her with peace. On the death of 
her husband, in 1887, she resigned her position as Counselor 
and withdrew from public life. But she still lives to bless 
and comfort her family. Sister Taylor possesses the true 
refinement of a sensitive, unselfish spirit. She has latent 
literary gifts, which are evidenced by the beautiful letters she 
writes, breathing of faith, hope and love. Her quiet life 
is crowned in its closing days with the love of children and 
grandchildren, for they have multiplied as a flock. The 
graciousness of heaven shines around her. 


The second counselor, Miss Martha Home, now Mrs. 
Tingey, inherits her mother's firm, wise temperament. She 
is not strong physically, but her strong spirit and uplifting 
faith carry her over every obstacle. She is gentle without 
weakness, and wise without subtlety. Even those who may 
differ from her in views and opinions can but respect and 
love her for her frank sincerity and her straightforward hon- 
esty. She was very congenial to her president and they 
worked always together and with the greatest unanimity and 
harmony. A sketch of her life will be given later in this 


Miss Louie Wells was born August 27, 1862, in Salt 
Lake City. She was a gifted and lovely girl. She was a 
natural musician, with a thrilling quality in the voice which 
is born only in a deep and passionate soul. She was a writer 
of rare promise and wrote enough in her short life to comprise 
a huge volume, if her scattered articles in the Contributor, 
Exponent, and other home periodicals had been put together. 
She was so talented in drawing and painting that she was 
advised by her friends to go East and follow art as a life 
work. She was an earnest and brilliant pupil in all these 
artistic lines, and one who took advantage of every opportunity 
offered by teachers or lecturers, books or schools. She was 
one of the most successful membe rs of the Home Opera com- 
pany, which, under Professor George Careless, produced the 

96 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

"Mikado" and other operas in the early eighties. She sang 
the part of one of the Three Little Maids in the "Mikado," 
and was an unqualified success from the moment her piquant 
personality appeared before the footlights. She was a wide- 
ly-read and highly intelligent assistant to her mother in the 
editing of the Exponent. A whole people loved her and 
mourned her untimely death in San Francisco, May 16, 1887. 
Her labors as secretary of the General Board of the Y. L. M. 
I. A. were all too brief, but what she did do was to estab- 
lish the general work on a solid and excellent foundation as 
to record-making and record-keeping. 


Mrs. Fanny Young Thatcher, who was the treasurer of 
the first General Board of the Y. L. M. I. A., was a gifted 
daughter of a great father, and was herself a favorite daugh- 
ter, sister and friend. In a family of handsome girls, she 
was easily the prettiest, as well as the best beloved. 

Fanny was born January 25, 1849; she was married in 
March, 1867, to George W. Thatcher, as his second wife. 
She had six children, three of whom are living Mrs. Lutie 
Lynch, Frank and Lawrence Thatcher. She lived out her 
short and quiet existence within the confines of Salt Lake 
City. She was possessed of remarkable musical gifts, her 
playing and singing being noted for exquisite grace and 
smoothness. Her father, Brigham Young, always called 
upon Fanny to lead in the evening hymns, or to play the 
latest dance tune, or to sing his favorite song, "Hard Times 
Come Again no More." 

Fanny was organist in the first Tabernacle built in the 
western wilderness, in the fifties, long ago torn down to per- 
mit the Assembly Hall to stand upon its site. Though rarely 
beautiful, her charm of face was not half so adorable as the 
charm of her gentle, refined, unselfish nature. Her words 
were never sharp, never sarcastic, never bitter. She might 
carry in her bosom a sorrow, but no one would guess it ex- 
cept from a deeper tinge of sympathy in the low, thrilling 
voice. She was of a shrinking nature, with sensitive spirit- 
ual tendrils which clung to faith and affection with delicate, 
invincible coils. A keen and saving sense of humor wreathed 


her tragedies in smiling- question-marks, thus meeting her 
self-pity with grim unresponsiveness. Fanny's mother, 
Lucy Decker Young, the first plural wife of her father, was 
of good old Knickerbocker stock on both sides Decker and 
Wheeler, both of old New York state; and from her Fanny 
inherited the patience which could look into the very eyes of 
life and death with sweet stillness. 

Fanny was president of the Eighteenth ward Y. L. M. I. 
A., for one year prior to the time when she was selected by 
Sister Eliza R. Snow and Sister Taylor as treasurer of the 
General Board, at its organization, June 19, 1880. She held 
the office of general treasurer until her death on January 20, 
1892. She was associated with the Board, therefore, prior 
to any general conferences, and had small opportunity to ex- 
ercise any gift or labor in the cause she had been associated 
with since its organization in her father's parlor in 1869. 
But she loved the good, and hated with calm serenity evil, 
gloom, strife, worldliness, and all selfishness. When she en- 
tered a room, with her graceful, gliding step, her shapely 
head coiled about with low braids of gleaming, gold-brown 
hair, her blue eyes smiling above the curving lips of delicate 
coral, her supple form robed ever in exquisite taste and sim- 
plicity, her presence penetrated to everyone present, though 
there were a multitude, like some subtle oriental perfume 
distilled in fairy vase. If she spoke, peace and good- will 
flowed through her words; if she sang, music brooded with 
hovering wings atremble while her voice floated along the 
air. If she swept the harp -strings, or touched with tender 
fingers the cold ivory of an organ, the spirit of harmony was 
vivified and given being. For Fanny was the incarnate 
muse of poetry and music. Such as she make earth 
endurable and heaven glorious. The heaven we know 
and hope to reach has no sweeter picture than that of Fanny 
Thatcher at some harpsichord, when there are heavenly 
choirs assembled to greet some earth-worn prophet, priest or 
beggar; her touch upon the keys, the very essence of 
heavenly sympathy and rejoicing as the anthem rolls, echo- 
ing through the halls of never-ending time and space. 

98 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 


Mrs. Maria Young- Doug-all is the daughter of the late 
President Brig-ham Young- and his wife Clarissa Ross. She 
was born in Salt Lake City, December 10th, 1849. She is 
on both sides from old New England stock, her ancestors on 
the father's side being among the colonizers of Massachusetts 
as early as 1720. On her mother's side, Betsy Ross, one of 
her family, was the fashioner of the first American flag. 

Mrs. Dou gall's childhood was passed amidst the diffi- 
culties and hardships endured by the early settlers of Utah, 
although her education, even under these circumstances, was 
not neglected; the wisdom of her illustrious father having 
provided a private teacher and school-room for his children 
where an excellent rudimentary education could be acquired. 
Among the studies taught was physical culture, with the 
early appliances invented by Dr. Dio Lewis. The quaint, 
single seats are now all destroyed; but there are still extant 
some of the^ back-boards which were used in those early and 
primitive "gymnastics." A private music teacher was 
always a part of the family life, the first piano and organ 
having been drawn across the plains with ox teams. Not a 
daughter of President Young lacked the musical ear, and 
most of them were, for those days, superior musicians. Mrs. 
Dougall was one of D. O. Calder's solo singers in his famous 
pioneer singing school. All this was before high schools in 
Utah were known, and Mrs. Dougall was married before it 
became possible to pursue the so-called "higher education." 

When eight years old, little Maria's mother died, and 
her subsequent life-training, until she was married, was un- 
der the judicious care of that excellent and beloved mother 
in Israel, Sister Zina D. H. Young, to whose teachings she is 
indebted for much of the solidity of character and the good 
judgment which she possesses. On June 1st, 1868, she be- 
came the wife of William B. Dougall, who was for years 
superintendent of the Deseret Telegraph company, a young- 
man of great sagacity and refinement. Her marriage has 
been a happy one, and five children have been born to her. 

Sister Dougall has lived all her life in Salt Lake City, 
and from her early years has been earnestly engaged in doing 
good, both in public and in private life. She was present at 



that memorable meeting in the Lion House on November 
28th, 1869, and was chosen as one of the counselors to her 
sister, Ella Y. Empey. In 1879, she was made president 
of the Seventeenth ward Association and acted as such 
till she was chosen as first counselor to Mary A. Freeze, 
the first president of the Salt Lake stake Y. L. M. I. A. 
From this position in 1887 she was called to become first 
counselor to President Elmina S. Taylor. She acted for six 
years as first counselor to Sister Julia Howe in the Primary 
Association of the Seventeenth ward, and Sister Howe deeply 
regretted the necessity for her resignation from that position , 
to take up the heavier burdens involved in the general work 
of the Mutual Improvement Association. She was also con- 
nected for years with the Woman's Co-operative store, acting 
as vice president to President M. Isabella Home. 

In 1893 Sister Doug-all was called to act as a worker, at 
the completion of that great edifice, in the Salt Lake Temple; 
and here she has remained at her post in season and out of 
season. When the Bureau of Information was opened Mrs. 
Dougall became one of the guides who give their time free 
of charge for the instruction of tourists who visit Salt Lake 
City. All this, too, in addition to her duties in the Mutual 
Improvement Association and the many loving- burdens 
which rest upon her as mother and home-maker. 

As this record will show, Mrs. Dougall has, on three 
different occasions, attended the great convention or Council 
of Women, once at Chicago, once at Omaha, and once at 
Washington. She attended also the Suffrag-e convention in 
1887 held at Washing-ton, D. C., in company with Sister 
Sarah M. Kimball, Sister Doug-all being- chairman of the 
executive committee of the state association. 

The brief facts here outlined of a full and beautiful life 
do not portray the half of the good deeds done; for it is in 
trouble or sickness, in distress and in poverty that the ten- 
der hand of this wise counselor has been most often extended . 
In those offices where woman ministers to woman, her gentle 
hands have comforted and blessed hundreds of Zion's daugh- 
ters. Her character is one of force and strength; and yet so 
calm and equable is her temperament that a storm-tossed soul 
can always find a sweet refuge in the sheltering love that 
knows no distinction between rich nor poor, high nor low, 

100 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

only the suffering" and unfortunate. Her beautiful home has 
hospitable doors swung" wide to every one who knocks at the 
portals; and, together with her husband, who died April llth, 
1909, she ministered to every traveler who went their way. 
For many years the g-eneral officers' meetings of the Y. 
L. M. I. A. held at the April and October conference 
time, were convened in Sister Doug-all's home. Here the 
sisters from every part of Zion gathered and held some 
of the best spiritual and the most profitable business 'meet- 
ing's ever known in the history of the Mutual Improvement 
work. These meetings outgrew the parlors, in the course 
of ten years; but who that has ever been at the meeting's in 
the Doug-all home can forg-et the hallowed influence of that 
beautiful and consecrated hearthstone! 



Ii-. inception. Its purpose. First number issued October, 1889. 
Mrs. Susa Young Gates, editor. President Elmina S. Taylor car- 

. ried moral responsibility. Difficulties. Assistance from mem- 
bers of General Board. Other friends. Out of troubled waters. 
President Taylor relieved by anpointment of committee. Editor 
Gates resigned. Mrs. May Booth Talmage her successor. Miss 
Ann M. Cannon succeeded Mrs. Talmage. Miss Elen Wallace, 
associate editor. Miss Mary E. Connelly became editor. Busi- 
ness department: A. H. Cannon, Miss Estelle Neff, Miss Agnes 
S. Campbell. First office. New quarters. 

THE work was growing- now very rapidly. Especially was 
there felt a necessity for some voice sufficiently exten- 
sive to reach from one end of Israel to the other. When 
King- Benjamin, among- the Nephites, g-athered his peo- 
ple together to give them his last solemn instructions, 
he found it impossible to make the thousands assem- 
bled hear his words. So he resorted to a very un- 
usual custom in those days, but a very common one 
now: he caused his words to be written and distributed to the 
multitude who were not within the sound of his voice. 
Likewise, when Sister Taylor received so many questioning- 
letters, she long-ed for some means of sending: her words to 
the multitude of "her girls" whose ranks were increasing 

There were, in the seventies and eighties, three printed 
mediums for the chief auxiliary organizations: the Juvenile In- 
structor, owned and edited by President George Q. Cannon, 
for the benefit of the Sunday Schools; the Woman ' s Exponent, 
owned and edited by Mrs. Emmeline B. Wells, for the use of 
the Relief Society; and the Contributor, the organ of the 

102 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

Young- Men's Association, owned and edited by Junius F. 
Wells. All of these were excellent publications, but each 
had its own special line of effort, and no one of them was 
suitable for Sister Taylor's purposes.- Sister Sarah M. Kim- 
ball was always an ardent friend and advocate of the idea 
that the young women should have a printed organ of their 
own, in which to develop their talents, and from whose 
pages they should receive instruction and encouragement 
from their leaders. At the same time that the sisters were 
considering the subject at home, away off on the Sandwich 
Islands Mrs. Susa Young Gates, who was there on a mission 
with her husband, was inspired with a desire to establish a 
magazine for the Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement Asso- 

Sister Gates wrote first to President Joseph F. Smith, 
suggesting to him her idea, which had been sanctioned by 
her husband. His answer was very encouraging, and she 
was advised to communicate with the president of the Church, 
as well as with the president of the Young Ladies' Mutual 
Improvement Associations. This counsel was followed 
immediately; and her letter to Sister Taylor and counselors is 
here given in part: 

LAIE, August 24, 1888. 
Dear Sisters: 

In addressing you on the subject of this letter, I earnestly 
desire that God will bless me and inspire my mind, that my 
words may be not only the expression of my heart, but bet- 
ter, that they may be dictated by the Spirit of God. 

For many years my great desire has been to occupy my 
spare time in the cultivation of the talent which was bestowed 
upon me, that I might benefit myself and be in some measure, 
according to the strength given me, a benefit and help in a 
literary way to my sisters in their lives and labors. The 
spare time which many have devoted to the pretty trifles with 
which women delight to adorn their households, or to the 
making of elaborate and trimmed clothing for themselves and 


children, I have used with delight in the labors of the pen. 
For the last eight years I have been engaged in home duties; 
and yet I have found many moments to devote to my writ- 
ings." * * * 

Some time ago, my husband having' expressed a wish 
that I could, on my return to Utah, identify myself with one 
of our leading 1 publications, and then centralize my varied 
efforts in the literary line, I addressed some questions to an old 
friend, Dr. Romania B. Pratt of your city, in regard to this 
matter. She wrote a kind letter in reply, and set forth in 
glowing colors the advisability of organizing a magazine to 
represent the Y. L. M. I. Associations. 

I asked myself and my husband the question: can I find the 
strength for all this? His reply in substance was, that if I 
could obtain good and wise assistants and if the main respon- 
sibility of such an undertaking were to rest upon a board of 
young women chosen for that purpose, and, above all, if I 
could be the constant recipient of the faith and the blessings 
of the presidency of the Church, and the authorities and 
members of the Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement Associ- 
ation, he could freely feel to give me his trust and confidence. 

Thus encouraged, I asked counsel of President Joseph F. 
Smith, and by him was referred to President Woodruff with 
his own added approval of the scheme. To this solemn council 
I have now submitted the matter, and should this letter reach 
you, you will doubtless receive at the same time some ex- 
pression of their minds on the matter. 

Sister Gates then gave a detailed outline of what she 
thought such a magazine should contain, plans which have 
been generally followed in the publishing of the Young 
\Vomarfs Journal. In closing Sister Gates said: 

Now as to the financial part of the plan: Although I have 
capital sufficient to start such an enterprise, yet it would 
seem wiser to me to create a stock company among the asso- 
ciations, and let each society hold an interest and receive of 
the profits, if there be any, thus becoming an interested party 
in the enterprise. Thus all would feel it a duty to uphold and 
sustain by faith and works their appointed spokesman and 
voice . 

104 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

Let me bring this lengthy epistle to a close. I shall 
humbly pray that God will inspire you in your deliberations, 
and that no matter what your decision as regards my partici- 
pation in the affair may be, if such a thing will prove of last- 
ing benefit to the young women of Utah, I pray that it may 
be carried successfully and gloriously to an issue; and that all 
who aid in any way may receive the purest and choicest bless- 
ings of heaven. 

Dear sisters, under the decision of the presiding council 
of the Church, the matter now rests in your hands. If you 
so decide, communicate with me as to your wishes in regard 
to me personally, and direct and suggest as the spirit in- 

Without prolonging words, I will pray that this matter 
may be decided in all righteousness, which is the fervent de- 
sire of 

Your sister in the Gospel, 


Address: Honolulu, Box 410, 
Oahu, Sandwich Islands. 

The communication to the president of the Church re- 
ceived the following answer: 



October 2, 1888. 
Mrs. Susa Gates, Honolulu, S. /. 

Dear Sister: 

Your letter of August 24, addressed to myself, and one 
of the same date addressed to Sisters ElminaS. Taylor, Maria 
Y. Dougall and Mattie H. Tingey, the presidency of the 
Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement Association, have been 
received and the contents noted with pleasure. 

The subject on which you write meets with our approval . 
We know of no reason why our Young Ladies'. Association 
should not be properly represented, and the plan you propose, 
we think, is worthy of the consideration of our sisters, who 
have been so long engaged in the interest of these associa- 
tions. What course they will take in this matter, we do not 
know; but if it is decided to enter into such an undertaking as 


you have outlined, and our counsel is desired, we would sug- 
gest that it be commenced upon business principles subscrip- 
tions could be solicited in advance, proper estimates made of 
the cost of labor in all its branches, the material needed in 
the publication of the work, etc.; and that suitable arrange- 
ments be made at the commencement, so that the venture 
may stand upon its own resources, independent of any aid 
from the Church, further than what moral support we can 
give in its interest. 

In regard to your being engaged in the editorial depart- 
ment of the contemplated magazine, we would suppose your 
ability and talent would eminently fit you for that place. 
That, however, as all other matters, would come under the 
supervision of the board of managers. 

We have forwarded your letter to the sisters of the Young 
Ladies' Mutual Improvement Association for their consider- 
ation and action, upon which they will, no doubt, communi- 
cate their views to you; so that you may more fully enter 
into suitable arrangements for the commencement and 
progress of the work . 

With kindest regards to yourself, your husband and fam- 
ily, and the Saints with whom you are associated, and pray- 
ing the Lord to bless you in all your laudable undertakings, 
I remain, 

Your brother in the Gospel, 


In a subsequent private letter written to Sister Gates in 
his own peculiar handwriting, President Woodruff wrote 
(using red ink for emphasis): "I think the sisters voted to 
publish the magazine. I said I would subscribe for three 
numbers." And he did. From the initial number of the 
journal to his death, President Woodruff personally sub- 
scribed and paid for three numbers. 

The letter from Sister Gates to President Elmina S. Tay- 
lor and counselors was read and then presented by them to 
the First Presidency of the Church. It was decided to estab- 
lish a magazine as soon as Sister Gates returned from the 
islands, and suitable arrangements could be made. In May, 

106 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. T A. 

1889, Elder Jacob F. Gates and family returned to Utah, and 
the work of planning- was begun . 

None of the sisters having- had experience in managing 
an enterprise of that kind, President Elmina S. Taylor felt it 
necessary to get the advice and assistance of an experienced 
man to counsel in the business part of the venture, until such 
time as a woman manag-er could be found. The great desire 
was to have all the work done by women , as had been advised 
by President Joseph F. Smith. 

Sister Gates then went to the office of her friend, Abra- 
ham H. Cannon, who was manager of the fuvenile Instructor, 
and presented the matter to him. She was received with all 
the warmth of encouragement possible to give. He expressed 
at once his perfect faith in the ultimate success of .such a ven- 
ture, and consented to assist the young editor in every pos- 
sible way, and to print the journal at the fuvenile Instructor 
office, trusting to the subscriptions to pay the expenses, so 
confident was he of its success. Never from that moment did 
his faith waver. What risk there was the editor willingly as- 
sumed, for she was as sanguine financially as she was spirit- 

During the summer of 1889, President Taylor and her 
counselor, Sister Dougall, visited the president of the Church 
at the Gardo House, and there Sister Susa Young Gates was 
blessed and set apart under the hands of President George 
Q. Cannon for the work she w T as about to undertake. 

In October, 1889, the first number of the new magazine 
was issued. The price was two dollars a year; and the mag- 
azine, after the first six issues, contained, as it did until 1909, 
forty-eight pages of reading matter. 

It was not expected that a state of perfection would be then 
or soon reached; only that the plane occupied would be as high 
as could be attained with the home talent available. There 
were two things of paramount importance to the young 


editor: first, that the spirit of the magazine should take pre- 
cedence above the forms in which the words mig'ht be cast; 
the polish and veneer might lack or fail, but the genuineness 
of the thought, and the indirect as well as the direct teaching 
must never be doubtful; second, from the first number the 
regular contributors must be home writers, and in harmony 
with the spirit of the associations; and, too, they should re- 
ceive something, if ever so little, for their work. The writer's 
brains were as worthy of hire as the type-setter's hands. 

During the first year some one was needed to travel and 
present the new magazine to the people of the Territory. Who 
would undertake such a labor of love without money and 
without price? In this dilemma, the mother of Mrs. Gates, 
Sister Lucy B. Young, wife of President Brigham Young, 
and a devoted worker in the cause of truth and womanhood, 
offered her services to travel and secure subscriptions. She 
took her own carriage and horses and traveled for months, 
from north to south, meeting with the Saints, securing hun- 
dreds of subscriptions, and acquainting the people with the 
fact that the young women of Zion had now a magazine of 
their own, in which to voice their sentiments and cultivate 
their God-given talents. 

The burden grew very heavy for the editor. In Octo- 
ber, 1892, anew arrangement was suggested by the editor. 
Elder Abraham H. Cannon had signified his willingness to 
assume the business management of the magazine, he to own 
one-third, the associations one-third, and the editor one-third. 
This agreement was signed by Elder Cannon and Sister 
Gates, but Sister Taylor was unwilling to incorporate the 
associations in order that they might hold the stock, and she 
would not accept the trust as a personal matter. However, 
Sister Gates never departed from the spirit of this contract, 
although it was not formally ratified, as the deed made out 
at the time was signed only by Brother Cannon and herself. 

108 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

From the initial number, Sister Taylor carried the moral 
responsibility of the young publication. She read most of 
the matter, and gave of her time and strength with such 
heart and soul that she was heard to say more than once that 
"the Journal would be the death of her." Brother Cannon 
was the next best friend of the Journal. In season and out 
of season, his encouragement and such help as his many 
other cares permitted were freely given to the editor and her 
struggling enterprise. His close friend and associate in the 
Juvenile office, Elder Walter J. Lewis, was another tried and 
true friend. Especially was he tried! But these with the 
editor bore the burden for eight long, weary and strenuous 
years. That they remained true to the Journal and to each 
other during those years is no less an honor to themselves 
than a blessing to the cause in which they had engaged. 

However, there were some extremely discouraging fea- 
tures connected with the work; the most trying one was the 
lack of agents' work in the field. For this reason, unsold 
books piled upon the shelves of the Juvenile office, and a con'- 
sequent debt accumulated on the office books. After eight 
years of varied experience, the Journal was suddenly de- 
prived of its managing head Elder Abraham H. Cannon. 
Death carried away one of the brightest and noblest apostles. 

Matters were now in a very unsatisfactory condition. 
The Journal was found to be in debt thousands of dollars for 
the printing. While it was true that the debt came from un- 
sold volumes, that did not help matters. 

Sister Gates offered to take an initial trip through several 
counties and make a heroic effort to dispose of the back num- 
bers of the Journal, which were at the same time the assets 
and the cause of the liabilities of the concern. No personal 
extravagance was imptited to either editor or business mana- 
ger none could be, where so much labor had been given 
without sufficient pay, or no pay at all. Sister Gates made 



two trial trips in the northern counties, covering- Weber, Box 
Elder, Cache, Bingfham, Fremont and parts of other stakes. 
From the first six weeks' trip there was realized over seven 
hundred dollars; and all were benefited by the experience. 


The associations made the effort to buy the back numbers, 
but they received full value for their time and money in the 
possession of books that are now well-nigh priceless, for many 
are long- out of print. After this, other members of the 
Board took up the matter of pushing- the sale of the back 

110 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

volumes; and soon after Sister Cornelia H. Clayton was en- 
gaged to finish up the work. Corresponding Secretary Mae 
Taylor was appointed by the Board and took full care of the 
accounts, without receiving" any money as compensation. As 
a result of these united efforts, thousands of dollars were re- 
ceived for the sale of the Journal, and President Taylor 
and counselors succeeded in making: an amicable settlement 
with Cannon & Sons. In connection with the settlement of 
the Journal debt, the generous assistance of Sister Elizabeth 
Claridge McCune is gratefully mentioned; for she came for- 
ward with the sum of $500 to assist in liquidating the debts. 
No words can properly describe the arduous and unselfish 
labors of President Elmina S. Taylor. No one knew as she 
did what the Journal had cost the editor in labor, sacrifice 
and tears. Likewise can we speak gratefully of generous as- 
sistance rendered by every member of the Board in this try- 
ing time; and of the faithful efforts made by the girls of the 
associations in assisting to make the enterprise the success 
it has since become. The firm of Cannon & Sons, led by 
President George Q. Cannon of hallowed memory, were ex- 
ceedingly broad and noble in their treatment and settlement 
of this vexed matter. Indeed, all connected with the busi- 
ness seemed to be actuated by the one spirit of unity and 
peace, under which influence the project came into existence. 
It will be interesting to glance at the actual work done 
by the Journal, as evidenced by some of the articles and 
departments which have appeared in its pages. The table 
of contents of the initial number will give an idea of the char- 
acter of the projected magazine: 

Literary Department: Hymn, by Ruby Lamont; Whatso- 
ever a Man Soweth (story), Homespun; Bereavement, (a 
poem), Josephine Spencer; A Great Navigator's First Love 
(story), Mrs. M. A. Y. Greenhalgh; Longing (poem), Lu 
Dalton; Spiritualism, or, What Became of Murphy (story), 


Ellen Jakeman; A Voice from the Daughters of Zion (poem), 

Our C/7/-/V Department: Introduction; Letter of the 
Presidency of the Y. L. M. I. A.; Aunt Polly's Letter; Our 
Dumb Animals, Zina Crocheron; Baby's Brass Nickel, Lula. 

House and Home: Our Design; Maggie Farnham's Ex- 
perience, Homespun; Cooking Recipes. 

Dress Department: Dress for Girls; Fall Costumes for 

Health and Hygiene: Hygiene, by Dr. Romania B. Pratt. 

Editor 's Department: Editorial; Domestic Life. 

The first year the following comprised the table of con- 

Literary Department: Our Sunday Chapter; The World 
as Seen Through a Woman's Eyes; The Perfect Woman (a 
symposium); Oar Girls; House and Home; Dress; Fancy 
Work; Hygiene; Editor's Department; Miscellaneous. 

All these were brief departments, but they were distinct 
divisions. This general plan has since been adhered to with 
some changes in departments each year. 

During the eleven years that Mrs. Gates edited the 
Journal there was much creditable advancement made both 
in the Journal itself and by the various writers who gained 
experience by writing for it. Such well known writers as 
Josephine Spencer, Kate Thomas, Annie Pike Greenwood, 
Susa Talmage, Christine D. Young, Ruth M. Fox and Leah 
D. Widtsoe had their initial training in the Journal pages. 

In the tenth year occurred two of the most important 
changes which have happened to the Journal. The Guide 
Lessons, which had heretofore appeared in pamphlet form, 
were introduced. This at once doubled the subscription list. 
This latter result, however, was more than helped by the 
lowering of the price of the Journal from two dollars a 

112 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

year to one dollar. This project was first advanced by Mrs. 
May Booth Talmage, who was now one of the literary com- 
mittee, and ably seconded by Miss Estelle Neff, the busi- 
ness manager. These two led the agitation in this direction. 

Volume XI was the last one edited by Mrs. Gates. Her 
health was already seriously impaired, but she clung to her 
work with the energy of faith and hope. In this volume the 
new Guide Department became a very absorbing feature, 
eight pages being- devoted to it. 

The number of subscribers, during the trying- years of 
its early existence, varied from fifteen hundred to two thou- 
sand. A great increase in the subscription list was made in 
volumes X and XI, during- the first two years which marked 
the decrease in the price and the introduction of the Guide 
Lessons into the Journal. Now, with volume XXI, the 
subscription list is between fourteen and fifteen thousand. 
It was gratifying to the long-time editor, Mrs. Gates, to 
know that the Lord had crowned her labors with partial suc- 
cess, that she had seen the child of her brain and heart grow 
from a puny weakling- to a lusty, well-developed child. She 
had carried it through the trying scenes of early danger and 
difficulty, and when she at last turned it over to her suc- 
cessor, it bore all the signs of long and vigorous life. Here 
she left it. 

During the first eight years, Mrs. Gates had submitted 
the manuscript to President Taylor and had consulted her 
freely in regard to all matters connected with the work. Then 
Sister Taylor felt that she could not continue her personal 
labors in this direction. Accordingly, a literary committee 
was selected from the members of the Board to do the work 
which for so many years had been done by Sister Taylor 
alone. With the beginning of volume IX, the General 
Board assumed direct charge of the management of the 
Journal, and the following committees were appointed: 


Business Committee Martha H. Tingey, Agnes Campbell, 
Mae Taylor, Sarah Eddington; Literary Committee Adella 
W. Eardley, May Booth Talmage, Augusta W. Grant. All 
these women came into the work without previous training, 
and it was with them a labor of love, for they served without 
pay. These committees have been changed from time to 
time as circumstances have demanded, but the women, with- 
out exception, have given of their best. And the office which 
they hold is no sinecure, for meetings are frequent, and 
problems are many and sometimes difficult to solve. 

When it was understood that Sister Gates had decided 
to resign her position as editor, a question of serious import 
confronted the General Board: Was it possible to maintain 
the standard of excellence, attained through eleven years of 
experience, when the choice must be made from among those 
who knew practically nothing of the editorial responsibilities 
of the magazine? 

The matter was given much earnest and prayerful con- 
sideration by the entire Board, and it was finally decided to 
place the Journal affairs under the management of one com- 
mittee, who would have direct supervision over its business 
as well as its literary interests. May Booth Talmage, Augusta 
W. Grant, and Emma Goddard were chosen to assume these 
responsibilities, the first named being chairman and editor,. 
At the close of a meeting held at Sister Doug-all's home, 
when the announcement of this committee had been made, 
Sister Taylor went to Sister Talmage, and in her most im- 
pressive manner said: "It is my earnest desire that you 
should undertake this work; go home and say to your hus- 
band that you have been called to do it, and that if you will 
accept the call the Lord will bless you in your effort." 

While, as before suggested, Mrs. Talmage 's experience 
had been limited to her work on the literary committee, with 
an occasional article for the magazine, yet constant associ- 

114 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

ation with a husband of recognized ability as an author, and 
her contact with a circle of friends among whom were num- 
bered many of Utah's brightest literary lights, had enabled 
her to acquire a good sense of appreciation of the best along 
literary lines. She realized fully that in justice to her 
young children she could devote but a portion of her time to 
Journal work, and must therefore rely largely upon the as- 
sistance of her committee, upon Miss Neff , without the prom- 
ise of whose valuable help and experience she dared not have 
undertaken her labors, and upon the aid rendered by her 
husband. She therefore refused to permit her name to be 
announced as editor, and from that time on the Journal has 
been "edited and published by the General Board." 

Mrs. Talmage feels that too much credit cannot be given 
to Sisters Grant, Goddard and Neff, for their united and 
efficient support. 

This Journal committee was exceedingly fortunate dur- 
ing the nineteen months of its existence in being able to 
secure the best material obtainable in Utah. But few of the 
names of her ablest writers are found lacking among the list 
of contributors for volumes XII and XIII, and to this fact 
Mrs. Talmage attributes the success of maintaining the high 
standard hitherto reached by her predecessor. During this 
period the first change in the cover design of the magazine 
was made and a complete volume of the Journal was sent 
gratis to each Mormon missionary. This plan for winning 
friends, introducing the magazine abroad, and increasing 
subscriptions, gave splendid results. 

Mrs. Talmage was obliged to resign in 1902 on account 
of family responsibilities. Her resignation was handed to 
President Elmina S. Taylor, who, not mentioning to her 
Board the need of finding a new editor for the Journal, con- 
sulted with her counselors and appointed a special fast meet- 
ing for the three at which to consider whom to call to that 



work. President Taylor and her counselors were unanimous 
in their selection of Ann M. Cannon. The nomination was 
therefore made to the General Board and by it approved. 

Miss Ann M. Cannon, the general secretary, had for a 
number of years been deputy county recorder of Salt Lake 
county. She was a graduate of the University of Utah, a 
careful student, an excellent critic, though without any liter- 
ary ambitions, and possessed many gifts and graces. She 
consented to give up her position and assume the editorship 
of the magazine. She was not strong, for her physical 
health had been undermined by her over-zealous devotion to 
duty; and yet she was well qualified for her new work. Feel- 
ing as much called of God as any missionary, she began her 


116 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

new work with much fear and trembling 1 . But her friends 
may well be proud of the results, for she set a high 
standard for herself and the Journal, and she found that 
standard constantly ahead of her an excellent indication of 
her own progress. Miss Cannon makes special mention of 
the excellent work done by those who labored with her 
on the Journal, and also of the fact that Mrs. Gates wrote 
the editorials from January to May, 1906, while the associate 
editor was in New Zealand. The first committee consisted 
of Emma Goddard and Adella W. Eardley, both of whom 
worked until July, 1905. During the spring of 1905, Miss 
Elen Wallace, who had been suggested by President Taylor 
prior to her death, was chosen as associate editor. And 
when the committees were re-arranged, following the re- 
organization, a new committee consisting of Augusta Winters 
Grant, chairman; Rose Wallace Bennett, Ruth May Fox and 
Alice Kimball Smith was appointed. 

During the incumbency of Miss Cannon, she made some 
valuable improvements in the editorial management of the 
Journal. It is true she was favored with the expenditure 
of more means than either of the others, but that was to be 
expected with the increased prosperity of the business. Her 
own labors were lightened by the assistance of a stenog- 
rapher, and during the latter part of her time by an associate 
editor. But all of these worked hard to increase the value of 
the business they had undertaken. The December or Christ- 
mas issue is now made a special feature. Beginning with 
volume XIII there were printed sixteen pages extra matter for 
the Christmas number. Miss Cannon enlarged and greatly 
improved the index, and in volume XVI she added an au- 
thors' index, which has ever since been continued. The 
Board of late years made a point of changing the outside 
cover, and in this endeavor Miss Cannon has followed the 
example of her predecessors, and has sought to develop home 


talent, rather than send abroad for suggestions. , The object 
which Miss Cannon and Miss Wallace held before them was 
to better the literary tone of the Journal without losing- any 
of the spirit of the Gospel . That they succeeded no one can 
well deny. 

In the spring- of 1907 Miss Wallace found it necessary , 
on account of home duties, to give up her work as associate 
editor. It will be seen from the record elsewhere that at 
this time Miss Cannon was general secretary of the Y. L. 
M. I. A. as well as editor of the Journal, while Miss Agnes 
S. Campbell was business manager of the Journal and as- 
sistant general secretary. The business in each department 
had now grown to such an extent that when a release was 
considered for Miss Wallace it was decided to re-arrange the 
entire work, to release Miss Cannon as editor, retaining her 
as general secretary; to release Miss Campbell as assistant 
secretary, retaining her as business manager; and to call 
Miss Mary E. Connelly to the editorial chair. This was ac- 
cordingly done and Miss Connelly commenced her labors as 
editor with the September number of the Journal^ 1907 
(vol. XVIII, No. 9). 

Miss Connelly was well qualified for this work, having 
been graduated from the University of Utah with the degree 
B. A. This in addition to her natural gifts fitted her for such 
a position. She was at the time teaching English in the Salt 
Lake High School, and though her feelings inclined toward 
teaching rather than journalism, she accepted the call as a 
duty, giving up the more remunerative position to accept it. 
She has given the Journal most capable and faithful atten- 
tion, endeavoring always to keep abreast with the trend of 
the best journalism. 

The literary value of the Journal of today can best be 
told by a glance into its bright pages. The size of the mag- 
azine during the last few years has been increased only on 




special occasions, but now, in volume XXI, four of the num- 
bers will each consist of sixty-four pages, and the remaining 
eight numbers will contain fifty-six. Each page contains 
about six hundred words. 

The Journal committee last mentioned continued to act 
until 1908, since which time there have been two other chair- 
men Ruth M. Fox and Elen Wallace, while the following 
have acted as members of the committee: Mae T. Nystrom, 
Julia M. Brixen, Lucy W. Smith and Joan Campbell. The 
committee as at present constituted is Adella W. Eardley, 
chairman; May Booth Talmage, and Estelle Neff Caldwell. 

This record cannot afford to slight the labors of one of 
the most efficient helps the Journal ever had. Upon the 
death of Apostle A. H. Cannon, Sister Gates appealed to 


Miss Kstelle Neff of Nephi, Juab county, to come to Salt 
Lake City and assume the business management of the 
magazine. Miss Neff was a graduate of the Brigham Young 
University in Provo. She knew nothing of magazine work, 
but she had a good education, and was possessed of the 
hardest sense and one of the sunniest dispositions ever given 
to a daughter of Eve. Miss Neff took all the care of the 
business management off the editor, and gave an occasional 
helping hand in the revision of manuscripts. At the end of 
six months, the Board was pleased to accept the free gift 
tendered by Mrs. Gates of her remaining interest in the Jour- 
nat, and agreed to take the general oversight of the whole 
matter. But Miss Neff was too valuable an acquisition to 
lose. She was retained as business manager and there she 
labored eight years until her marriage, in 1905. The splen- 
did reputation of the Jou*ml among all businessmen has 
been due largely to the courteous and wise deportment of this 
young lady, coupled with the excellent support which the 
committee and the Board itself rendered. For five months 
during the spring and early summer of 1905, Miss Neff, with 
the assistance of Miss Elen Wallace, edited the Journal^ be- 
cause of the absence of the editor, Miss Cannon, who was in 
California for her health. 

Upon the marriage of Miss Estelle Neff in June, 1905, 
Miss Agnes S. Campbell became business manager for the 
Journal. Prior to this time Miss Campbell had acted on the 
business committee and was quite familiar with the work. 
She had also had a valuable business training in her position 
as cashier at Z. C. M. I. The work therefore progressed 
well under her management. In 1905, under Miss Neff, a 
mailing machine had been installed. In autumn of the same 
year, Miss Campbell urged the purchase of a stencil cutting 
machine. These two purchases so facilitated the mailing 
that that business is now attended to in two days where for- 



merly, with a smaller subscription list, it took the greater part 
of a week. 

In 1905, Miss Katherine E. Stayner was employed for 
stenographic and other clerical work, and has since con- 
tinued, always giving- excellent service. 

In 1908, the management of the advertisi ng department 
was assumed by Miss Campbell and Miss Stayner. They have 
made of it a signal success, which has added greatly to the 
resources of the journal. 

The Journal now publishes an edition of fifteen thou- 
sand; all business is done on a cash basis - no booking and no 
debts, practically speaking. The business record of the en- 
terprise is above reproach. Improvements in the magazine 



are also being- made as fast as the finances warrant them. 
This plan is chosen rather than that of storing- up money in 
the bank. 

In July, 1897, an office for the Journal was opened in 
the Constitution building-, No. 34 S. Main street, Salt Lake 
City. It consisted of a front room, or business office, and a 
store room. Instead of this small office with its borrowed desks 
and a few donated chairs, the Journal now occupies beautiful 
and commodious quarters in the Bishop's building. There are 
the business office, the mailing- department, the store room and 
the editor's room. Never until December, 1909, did the edi- 
tor have private quarters. In the early days there was no 
office at all; later, a desk was located in the business office; 
then two rooms with outside windows were secured, and here 
the editor had her corner in the same room with the mailing: 
and storag-e departments. Those who have labored in the in- 
terest of the Journal are all deeply grateful for the improve- 
ment in conditions and surrounding's. And so we leave the 
Young Woman's Journal busy, prosperous, and certainly a 
tremendous force for good in the ranks of the young women 
in Zion. Who can properly estimate its value or forecast its 



By Estelle Neff Caldwell, 

Mrs. Susa Young Gates is the second daughter of Brig- 
ham Young and Lucy Bigelow Young, and she was the first 
child born in the historic Lion House, Salt Lake City, 
(March 18, 1856). 

Besides the many excellent qualities inherited from her 
father, she is well descended on her mother's side, the Bige- 
lows being one of America's distinguished families. Her 
education was begun in the private school of her father and 
was continued in the Deseret University (U. of U.) of which 




she is an alumnus. Here her literary work had its begin- 
ning-. Dr. Park appointed her associate editor of the first 
western college paper, "The College Lantern." Before 
reaching- the ag-e of fourteen, she studied stenography and 
telegraphy, becoming- so expert in the former that she can 
still act as a shorthand reporter. In 1870 her father moved 
her mother and two daug-hters, Susa and Mabel, to St. 


George. While sojourning: in Dixie, she organized a large 
club of both sexes called the "Union Club." Since that 
time this progressive woman has won distinction as an organ- 
izer in intellectual lines. She organized the musical depart- 
ment in 1878 in the Brigham Young Academy at Provo, and 
the domestic science department in the same institution in 
1897. She organized the first state chapter of the Daugh- 
ters of the Revolution in Utah. The biggest organization 
work, however, was the establishment of the Young Woman' s 
Journal in 1889 under the direction of the Y. L. M. I. A. 

In 1880, Miss Susa was married to Jacob F. Gates, the 
son of Jacob Gates, who figured prominently in the early his- 
tory of Utah. He is a man of good judgment and sterling- 
character, possessing that type of nobility which is generally 
spoken of as common sense. Mrs. Gates accompanied her 
husband on a four years' mission to the Sandwich Islands. 
Three of her children were born there. She is the mother of 
thirteen children, ten sons and three daughters; five of these 
are living Mrs. Leah D. Widtsoe, Emma Lucy, Brigham 
Cecil, Harvey Harris, and Franklin Young Gates. The eldest 
child, Mrs. Widtsoe. is a woman of broad interests and true 
culture, and the second daughter, Emma Lucy, the Utah 
nightingale, is famous in two continents. 

When we turn our attention to the work this versatile 
woman has done in the cause of Mutual Improvement, 
we are reminded that she was present at the initial organiza- 
tion in the Lion House in 1869, and that she was sustained as 
general reporter for these associations at the first public 
meeting in 1870. From the view-point of the greatest good 
to the greatest number, the establishment of the Journal is 
one of the biggest factors in the progress of Mutual Improve- 
ment. What Mrs. Gates sacrificed to make this periodical 
successful cannot be realized; for the magazine was pub- 
lished in Salt Lake City and her home was in Provo; and 
she had a family of little children. Eleven years she jour- 
neyed to and fro, meeting the public as well as private de- 
mands of each weary day. Small wonder that the anxiety 
and criticism took from the literary work all its joy, though it 
expanded her heart and her mind. After eight years of life, 
financial difficulties beset the Journal, and discontinuing its 
publication was seriously considered. President Elmina S. 

124 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

Taylor and nearly all the Board were convinced that that was 
the wisest course; but Mrs. Gates was filled with the idea that 
it must go on. Finally her courage and indomitable faith 
turned the tide of sentiment in favor of a new trial which re- 
sulted in success. 

Mrs. Gates is well known as a public speaker and 
as an author. To uplift the youth of her people with 
her pen was a mission given her by President Young. 
Much of her writing- is therefore of a doctrinal nature, 
and all of it is imbued with the spirit of religion. In 
her editorial days the spirit, no less than the matter, de- 
termined whether or not a manuscript was accepted. She 
herself has a natural power of giving herself to humanity 
through her writings; they glow with life and on that ac- 
count kindle fires in other minds and other hearts. 

Early writings were printed in the Deseret News, the 
Juvenile Instructor, the Exponent and the Young Roman's 
Journal under the nom de plume Homespun. In these first 
efforts she was much encouraged by Sisters Eliza R. Snow 
and Emmeline B. Wells. Two books have been published, 
"Lydia Knight's History," in early days, and recently her 
finest piece of fiction, "John Stevens 's Courtship," a his- 
torical romance portraying pioneer life in Utah; and now 
this History of the Y. L. M. I. A. 

Mrs. Gates 's creative faculty makes all her work origi- 
nal. The interest element is sustained throughout by force- 
fulness. Simplicity of style, correctness and vivid illustra- 
tion adapt her writings to popular audiences. The Journal 
editorials covering a period of eleven years are in many re- 
spects her ablest work. They show the sympathetic insight 
into human nature, and the keen perception of human needs, 
which distinguish the world's great writings. 

Mrs. Gates became associated with the General Board 
of the Y. L. M. I. A. in 1889. She is in her element when pro- 
jecting new ideas in the direction of reform. Mutual Im- 
provement work in the General Board and in local associ- 
ations has provided endless opportunities for the exercise of 
her initiative powers. With characteristic foresight she ad- 
vocated the adoption of a uniform course of study in the Y. 
L. M. I. A.; and it was she who wrote the first two Guides. 


Since this work has been published in the Journal, she has 
prepared several excellent study courses. 

Naturally interested in all forms of woman's work, she 
has been a forceful figure in the affairs of the National Coun- 
cil of Women of the U. S. Seven times she represented the 
Y. L. M. I. A. at the National Council of Women of 
the U. S. The national leaders honored her by an 
appointment to the chairmanship of the Press com- 
mittee of the National Council of the U. S. for three 
years. They also chose her as one of the speakers at the 
International Quinquennial held in London in 1899; and in 
1901 she filled the responsible position of sole delegate from 
the National Council of the United States to the International 
Council of Women held in Copenhagen. This was perhaps 
the highest honor that was ever shown by the women of the 
world to a Mormon woman. Her clever character sketches 
of the leaders of these big movements, with the lucid ac- 
counts of the work accomplished, evoked favorable comment 
wherever they were read. 

Extensive travel and intimate association with famous 
people of the world have not lessened her activity in Church 
circles. Through the spiritual gifts she exercises her sister 
associates receive comfort and blessings. Thousands of 
school and M. I. A. girls who have been benefited by her re- 
ligious instructions hold "Aunt Susa" in loving remem- 
brance. A few years ago she passed through a long illness, 
which she is convinced must have ended fatally had she not 
been healed by faith. 

Keenly alive to the importance of temple work she was 
appointed a worker and a recorder in the St. George Temple 
at its completion. She has labored in the Logan Temple, 
and for the past three years has been a regular worker in the 
Salt Lake Temple. At present, genealogical research, an 
important branch of temple work, absorbs a large share of 
her attention. She is an active worker in the Genealogical 
Society of Utah, and has been president of the Daughters of 
the Pioneers, thereby gaining and disseminating much infor- 
mation on this subject. Her ability to grasp things in the 
large and to arouse enthusiasm in others have given a great 
impetus to this line of Church work. 

Mrs. Gates has long been a leader in educational mat- 

126 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

ters and she is referred to as the mother of physical education 
in Utah. Besides being- a teacher of theology, domestic science, 
and music in the B. Y. A. at Provo, she has been a member 
of its board of directors for nineteen years; and was appointed 
by the governor of Utah five years ago as a director of the 
Agricultural College of Utah, which position she still holds. 
She is recognized today as a public- spirited woman, and one 
having extraordinary initiative power, traits inherited from 
her father. A vivid personality is combined in her with an 
energetic and somewhat complex character. She is engag- 
ing- and brilliant in conversation, and possesses the repletion 
of sentiment which naturally accompanies an artistic tempera- 
ment, this emotional nature being held in check by the saving 
grace of humor. Her mind is the versatile, imaginative 
type, keenly perceptive and philosophical. These qualities 
have enabled her to attain to the unique position which she 
occupies in the affairs of Church and State. All that is 
written of Mrs. Gates in her lifetime will be necessarily inade- 
quate, it is only through the perspective of years that her 
achievements and dynamic power will be fully discernible . 



Duties devolving upon General Board. The first Aids appointed. 
First General Conference. General Conferences appointed to be 
held annually. Regular sessions of the General Board established. 
Second and third General Conferences. General officers' meet- 
ings. Local and Stake work. General Conjoint Conferences. 

constant labor and traveling- entailed in visit- 
A ing- the various conferences, now scattered throughout 
the whole extent of Utah, and already beginning- to creep 
over into surrounding- states and territories, lay all too 
heavy upon the shoulders of the president with the occa- 
sional help of her two counselors, or that of the Salt Lake 
stake board. At that time the stakes held two conferences 
yearly, in connection with the Relief Society and Primary 
Association. But the territory to be covered, with much of 
the traveling to be done by team, began to assume impossi- 
ble proportions for one or even three women. 

An invitation for Sister Taylor to attend these confer- 
ences in the early years would be accompanied usually by 
sufficient money to cover railroad fares. There was only one 
Sister Taylor, however, and the call for visits came thicker 
and faster. Her counselors were both willing and capable, 
but their duties, as young- mothers, together with the fact 
that neither possessed the best of health, prevented them 
from doing much traveling. Added to these difficulties were 
the pressing- needs of the new magazine, much of the matter 
for which came under Sister Taylor's eye. Then the associa- 
tions were growing so rapidly that the necessity of help in 
several directions became more and more imperative. 

With these thoughts weighing heavily upon her, Sister 
Taylor decided upon calling to her aid some young women 

128 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

who were experienced in the work, and who could assist in 
the visiting- of conferences. She herself could not foresee the 
breadth and scope of this new movement which she was 
inaugurating. At first the girls were called in simply as 
traveling missionaries. But their importance grew with 
their service, and they g'radually made a fixed and important 
place for themselves as they helped to make history for the 
Y. L. M. I. A. movement. 

Like any vigorous people, when there is no word exactly 
fitted to represent a departure in custom, the Latter-day 
Saints make a new word, or twist an old one to do the service 
they require. In this case Sister Taylor could not well name 
her young assistants an executive committee, for they were 
not that; neither were they counselors nor vice-presidents; 
so she called them exactly what she meant them to be aids 
to her and to the work. And aids they are to this day. 

In June, 1889, the Young Men's Mutual Improvement 
Association held a conference which they termed "A Young 
People's Conference." President E. S. Taylor and her 
counselors were invited to sit on the stand. Sisters Taylor 
and Dougall addressed the congregation, while Sister Susa 
Young Gates gave a talk on "Women in Foreign Missions." 
Though this was not planned conjointly, it was the forerun- 
ner of the present general con joint conferences. 

The winter of 1889-90 was an exceeding busy one for 
Sister Taylor and her counselors. The new magazine de- 
manded many consultations, and conferences showed unu- 
sual activity. The minutes of these meetings are not with us, 
however, as the secretary, Miss Mary E. Cook, lived in 
Logan and was too busy with her school duties to attend 

In February, 1890, it was decided to call a general con- 
ference of all Y. L. M. I. A. workers to convene at the regu- 
lar April Conference. Accordingly notices were published 


in the papers, and letters were sent out to the stake 

The first general conference of the Y. L. M. I. A. opened 
April 4, 1890, with a public session held in the Assembly Hall. 
It was followed with an officers' meeting, April 5, at the home 
of Counselor Dougall, opposite the west gate of the Temple 
Block. The minutes of both these meetings were published 
in the [ounial and we give them place in this record. The 
reports of the associations give a fairly clear idea of the con- 
ditions then existing. Note the quaint wording of the whole 


The first general conference of the Y. L. M. I. A. com- 
menced at 7: 30 p. m. Friday, April 4th, 1890, in the Assem- 
bly Hall, Salt Lake City, President Elmina S. Taylor pre- 

There were upon the stand: of the general presidency, 
Mrs. E. S. Taylor, Mrs. M. Y. Dougall, and Mrs. Mattie H. 
Tingey; of the presidents of stakes, Miss Elizabeth W. Smith 
of Davis, Mrs. Susannah Heiner of Morgan, Mrs. Mary A. 
Freeze of Salt Lake, Mrs. Mary C. Freeman of St. Johns 
who also represented St. Joseph as delegate, Mrs. Ann Tate 
of Tooele and Mrs. Zina Lyons of Utah. Bear Lake, Cache, 
Emery and Juab were represented by counselors. There 
were also present Mrs. Zina D. H. Young and Mrs. M. I. 
Home . 

The choir sang, ''Scatter the gems." The opening prayer 
was offered by Professor Karl G. Maeser. Singing, "Mem- 
ories of Galilee." The condensed report of the associations 
was read by Secretary Mary E. Cook. 

President E. S. Taylor then addressed as quiet and ap- 
preciative an audience as ever convened in the hall at con- 
siderable length upon a variety of subjects; prominent among 
which were: the anxiety manifested by the people of the world 
to obtain their genealogies, unconsciously thereby fulfilling a 
prophecy uttered by the Prophet Joseph Smith, who said 
that they would prepare them for our use while unconscious 
of the propelling power. The Word of Wisdom was happily 

130 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

presented with the earnestness so characteristic of the speak- 
er, the practical operations of which will reach the homes of 
those most remote through the delegates assembled. A strong 
testimony was borne that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God; 
spoke of wealth, its uses and abuses; concluding with, "the 
path of duty is the path of safety." 

First Counselor Maria Y. Dougall, in a practical, com- 
mon-sense address, enforced by a strong individuality, good 
judgment, and a consciousness of the direction of the Holy 
Spirit, upon which she relied, begged that the youth should 
be encouraged in seeking a testimony for themselves; and for 
revelation, likewise, for we had a right to it, as stated by our 
worthy president in today's discourse. Also stated that by 
studying well the writings of the Prophet of the latter days, 
we would find that the principles there advanced were the 
ones that scientists, romance -writers and poets were now ad- 
vancing and trying to render practical. 

Second Counselor Mattie H. Tingey was the next speak- 
er, and in a clear, concise, and suggestive address, touched 
upon disease, the blessing of healing being contingent and 
dependent upon our faithfulness to our covenants; behavior, 
especially in public, and in places consecrated to worship; re- 
spect for the aged; and the self-perfection that will render us 
fit for the society of the redeemed. 

At this point, a well rendered duet was highly enjoyed 
by the music loving of the assembly. 

President Mary A. Freeze of Salt Lake stake gave a 
brief report of this stake which represents thirty-four ward 
organizations with a membership of seven hundred and 
thirty-four for the seventeen wards reported. She is thor- 
oughly alive to the spiritual interests of the associations of 
this stake and said that a prediction made by Sister E. R. 
Snow was having its fulfilment in our thus assembling in 
conference capacity, this evening; recommended a study of 
the truth of the Gospel and felt that to defend the young, 
giddy, and inexperienced of our community from the tempta- 
tions, vexations and ungodliness that prevail among us to 
such an extent today, she would willingly become one of the 
advance guards in shielding them from every form of evil. 

Mrs. 'Lizzie Townsend, first counselor of the board of the 


Cache stake, in a short but instructive address, following her 
report, insisted upon our being- alive to the calls of duty. 

First Counselor M. Y. Dougall then presented the fol- 
lowing: officers for the Central Board: 

Mrs. Elmina S. Taylor, president; Mrs. Maria Y. Dou- 
gall, first counselor; Mrs. Mattie H. Tingey, second counse- 
lor; Miss M. E. Cook, secretary; Mrs. Fannie Y. Thatcher, 
treasurer. Also four aids, Mrs. Adella W. Eardley, Mrs. 
Lillie T. Freeze, Miss Aggie Campbell, and Miss Sarah Ed- 
dington, who were unanimously sustained. 

The choir, composed of young: ladies of the Fourteenth 
and Fifteenth wards, sang-, "Come, Spirit Come." Adjourned. 
Benediction by Mrs. Zina D. H. Young-. 


Number of members, 8,304, exclusive of 162 who meet 
conjointly; average attendance, 4,237; number of chapters 
read, 29,418; miscellaneous readings, 28,611; manuscript pa- 
pers, 240; testimonies borne, 9,209; essays, 960; recitations, 
1,585; lectures, 863; sketches, 388; questions, 234; corre- 
spondence, 146; synopses, 2; songs, 1,937; music, 330; 
books in library, 3,141: cash on hand at last report, $1,300.47; 
cash received, $1,904,62; cash total, $3,205,09; cash dis- 
bursed, $1,496.89; cash on hand, $1,708,20; property last 
report, $2,634,51; property received; $393.80; property total, 
$3,028.34; property disbursed, $34.79; property on hand, 


Agreeable to instructions, the officers of the Central 
Board of the Y. L. M. I. A. together with the stake presi- 
dents and delegates met at half past four p. m., Saturday, 
April 5th, 1890, at the residence of Mrs. Maria Y. Doug-all, 
in Salt Lake City, and held a most enjoyable meeting, which 
was opened by prayer by Mrs. Maria Y. Dougall. 

At roll call, Davis, Morgan, Salt Lake, St. Johns, Too- 
ele and Utah stakes were represented by presidents; Bear 
Lake, Cache and Juab by counselors; Emery and St. Joseph 
by delegates. 

132 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

The reports were models of conciseness and accuracy, em- 
body ing the number of ward associations in each stake, the 
number of members enrolled, the extent of the territory em- 
braced in the stake associations, a brief summary of which 
.shows that in the eleven stakes represented, there were 115 
ward associations, (31 of which were not reported, ) with a 
membership of 4,163, with a desire to encourage the timid, re- 
strain the thoughtless, and secure a creditable amount of 
work from all the interested. While some of the work was 
diffusive, much was centered judiciously upon themes that 
will have a life-long hold upon the memories of those reaping 
the benefit thereof. The visiting of the stake officers shows 
that harmony exists in these various wards, and that in dis- 
tricts remote from large centers conjoint associations are held, 
162 young ladies participating in the exercises of such con- 
joint associations; the territory traversed varying from a few 
blocks to a distance of from seventy-five to one hundred and 
fifty miles. Some of the more distant have been visited but 
once a year by stake officials, and then through the courtesy 
of the stake presidents and bishops; but the aim is to visit 
twice yearly; and some reported quarterly visits. The in- 
struction imparted by the president and her counselors if 
acted upon cannot fail to enhance the value of these working 
centers by fifty per cent. We should have centers where 
politeness, culture, refinement, purity, and sanctification 
would invite the guardianship of angels ; and this can easily 
be accomplished by each and every one training herself 
through perfect self-government to be all they desire in the 

Benediction by Counselor Lizzie Townsend. 

M. E. COOK, Secretary. 

At this meeting in April, 1890, it will be noticed that 
the General Board was first placed before the representatives 
of the associations, in conference assembled, for their suffrag- 
es; also, at this conference, the names of the four aids 
were added to the General Board. These aids were well worthy 
of the honor thus placed upon them. From that day they 
we. e active and useful workers in the General Board. All 


are still in this position except Lillie T. Freeze, who, at her 
request, was released in October, 1904, on account of her 
pressing- duties in the General Board of the Primary Associ- 
ation, to which she owed her first duty. It was at this meet- 
ing: that Miss Mary E. Cook was publicly voted in as secre- 
tary, she having- performed the work of that office since the 
death of Louie Wells, in May, 1887. 

At the meeting of g-eneral and stake officers held April 
5th, 1891, announcement was made that thereafter it was de- 
signed to hold one annual conference of the Y. L. M. I. A. in 
October. On September 6th, 1891, a meeting: of the Gener- 
al Board was called to make arrang-ements for this first reg-- 
ular annual conference, being the second g-eneral conference 
held. This meeting was held at the home of Sister Doug-all, 
and much important business was accomplished. Those 
present at this private session were, President E. S. Taylor, 
Counselors Maria Y. Doug-all and Martha H. Ting-ey, Aids 
Adella W. Eardley, Lillie T. Freeze, Sarah Edding:ton, and 
Assistant Secretary Ann M. Cannon. Arrangements were 
there made to entertain all visiting- delegates. This was a 
step in the right direction, and the beautiful and hospitable 
custom has been maintained in all subsequent conferences. 
There was also another innovation the selecting* of formal 
subjects to be treated by various speakers. The subject 
of "Social Purity" was chosen and was afterward assigned 
to Mrs. Emily Cluff, of Provo; "Development of Woman 
Physical, Mental and Spiritual," was assigned to Mrs. Min- 
nie J. Snow, then the president of Box Elder stake Y. L. M. 
I. A.; "Be Ye Not Unequally Yoked" was the subject chosen 
for Mrs. Lillie T. Freeze. There were several musical se- 
lections to be interspersed throughout the program, and mu- 
sic for the entire conference was put in charge of Miss Ag- 
gie Campbell. Another interesting: decision made at this 
preliminary meeting- was that there were to be regular ses- 

134 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

sions of the General Board held four times a year. How 
far-away that time seems now, and how small the compass of 
the labors it provided for! Now there are weekly meetings 
of the Board and special committee meeting's held several 
times a week. But the innovation of a regular time and 
place for formal discussions proved successful. 

The program for this conference was carried out prac- 
tically as planned. It consisted of an officers' meeting, held 
October 6th, 1891, at the residence of Counselor Maria Y. 
Dougall, and public sessions October 7th at 1 p. m. and 7:30 
p. m. in the Salt Lake Assembly Hall. In addition to the 
addresses already mentioned, there were others by Sisters 
Zina D. H. Young, Bathsheba W. Smith, M. Isabella Home, 
Maria Y. Dougall, and President Elmina S. Taylor; solos by 
Sarah Olsen Langford and Agnes Olsen Thomas, and a duet 
by Louise Poulton and Ella Derr. 

At the evening session, President Joseph F. Smith was 
present and gave some invaluable counsel: 

He urged all young ladies to form early some purpose in 
life, and let that purpose be a good and noble one. Aim high 
to do good, to become amiable and useful; be self-reliant. 
No creature is absolutely independent, but some are more so 
than others. Our world and our lives would be exceedingly 
barren if we were utterly independent, but we can be self- 
reliant. Practical learning is the most essential. He urged 
the mothers to see that their daughters have an opportunity 
of learning some trade which would enable them to provide 
a living in case of necessity. Spoke at some length on the 
influence of women, claiming that the character of the com- 
munity depends largely upon its girls, they have the power 
to make good, bad, or indifferent society, while the influence 
of a mother is more potent for good or evil than any other 
influence in the world. He said the object of our associations 
is partly that the young ladies who have few advantages at 
home may have extended opportunities to learn and improve. 
He advised the girls to be kind to mother and to all their 
associates; making home pleasant for all, and all sharing 



its burdens. He exhorted all when tried, to go to the Lord. 
''All who are tried and stand true will receive a glorious re- 
ward. 'Be ye wise as serpents and harmless as doves.' We 
must conform to the conditions our Father suffers to be 
brought to bear upon us, and He will sustain us and bring 
us off triumphant in the end." In conclusion he urged all 
to maintain honor even at the cost of life itself. 

The resignation of Miss Mary E. Cook as secretary of 
the General Board was offered at this conference and accept- 
ed, as the lady was leaving for the East. Sister Taylor 


spoke highly of her brief labors, and then placed Miss Ann 
M. Cannon, who had been sustained as assistant secretary 
the preceding April, before the conference as secretary. 

The death of Mrs. Fanny Y. Thatcher, the general treas- 
urer, occurred in February, 1892. Her loss was felt keenly 
by Sister Taylor and associates. The place made vacant by 
her death was filled, the following April, by the appointment 



of Miss Ann M. Cannon, who now became both secretary 
and treasurer. 

At the first meeting of the third conference, we find re- 
corded the manner in which funds were raised. Sister 
Taylor reported that in order to send a representative to the 
Woman's National Council at Washington, money had to be 
raised quickly, and, there not having been time to send to 
all the stakes for contributions, a call had been made upon 
those near by, and these central stakes had responded with 
such liberality that there was enough to pay expenses and 
place a small balance with the treasurer. 

For many years, the business and spiritual meetings at 
the General Conference time in April and October were held 
in the hospitable home of Brother and Sister W. B. Dougall. 
Many "spiritual feasts" have marked the yearly sessions in 
these capacious parlors, while chocolate and buns were al- 
ways had in abundance for the tired girls who gladly set 



aside amusement, work or sleep to engage in those restful 
and faith-promoting "testimony meetings." 

We have the minutes of one of the business sessions 
held in that long-ago time, in which occur some character- 
istic instructions of President Elmina S. Taylor. We append 
them here, both because of their value and because they 
give a glimpse of her own character and teachings: 

Sister Taylor bore a strong testimony to the fact that 
she was always strengthened and aided in performing her 
duty by a higher source of power than existed in herself. 
She urged the presidents to be energetic and full of zeal. 
She said that some presidents had mapped out plans of study 
in their associations instead of working in a desultory fash- 
ion; when such plans had been adhered to, great success had 
attended them. She said: "However, all do not have the 
same material to work with, and the exercises must be varied 
according to the capacity of the members. The aim should 
be not to develop the talent of one or two, but to draw out 
and encourage each member, thus benefiting the whole." 
She urged the officers not to drive the girls away by requir- 
ing too difficult work of them; but to come down to the 
capacity and youth of the girls and be in sympathy with 
them, thus teaching them that which will do them good, 
here and hereafter. "Devise the best work you can," she 
said, "and pray for each other, and then the Lord will help 
you all. As teachers, cultivate all those virtues which you 
would like to be reproduced in those under you." 

Now, what are the conditions of today? What of local, stake 
and general conferences? Have the Mutuals grown apace 
with the advancement and progress of the people? Let us 

The evolution of the ward associations has centered 
chiefly around the machinery of their work. Yet it was a 
great advantage when the two General Boards set Tuesday 
as M. I. A. night throughout the Church. This gave 
order and regularity to the cause and enabled every inter- 
ested person to govern all engagements in accordance with 

138 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

this ruling:. In later years, some of the country wards 
found it practicable to give up the Sabbath evening's entire- 
ly to the Mutuals, as the Sacrament meeting's are there held 
in the afternoon. This has been more imperative since the 
district and high schools have beg-un to fill every evening- of 
the week with study and books, so that it has been almost 
impossible to keep Tuesday nig-ht free for Mutual purposes; 
yet in the cities where Sacrament meetings are held Sunday 
evening 1 , no other recourse is at hand. Another recent fea- 
ture of the ward meeting's is the preliminary programs. In 
the first years the associations met separately, the girls usu- 
ally choosing to assemble in the afternoon. But bishops and 
young" men pleaded in earlier years for the assistance and pres- 
ence of the girls to help their own associations, and to draw out 
the boys. As ever, the girls consented, though not always con- 
vinced that they were gainers in the new arrangement; and thus 
grew up the so-called "conjoint opening exercises." The two 
associations meet in the large hall of the ward, programs and 
minutes of both societies are read and kept, but the exercises 
are presided over by the Y. M. M. 1. officers, with the occa- 
sional courtesy of the Young Ladies' officers calling out their 
own numbers; in some instances the girls are graciously 
invited to "conduct" the whole evening exercises. 
In these preliminary programs, after singing and prayer, 
there are short talks given, or a story told, then, at the sound 
of the bell, the young men withdraw, and the girls carry on 
their own work. Usually the whole company reassembles 
for closing" exercises, yet not always. Once a month the two 
associations hold a "conjoint meeting." Here the programs 
are divided equally, being planned by a "conjoint commit- 
tee," and this open meeting is always held in the ward hall 
on fast day, the first Sunday in each month, and the general 
public is invited to attend. Lectures by the members or 
by some visiting stake or other officer are given on subjects 


of general interest. These may be taken from the Guides or 
Manuals; or perchance physicians are invited to speak on 
hygiene, or musicians are asked to give an evening with 
some great composer, or lecturers and professionals may read 
"The Vision of Sir Launfal" or "Hanele," while Ibsen and 
Shakespeare, with Isaiah and David, form subjects of peren- 
nial interest. At the yearly ward conference, the Y. L. M. 
I. A. officers are placed before the people for their suffrage, 
in common with other ward officers. Thus the detail work 
of the associations is moving forward in direct and powerful 

The stake officers hold monthly meetings, and plan for 
regular visits to wards, with other minute details of their 
calling. Each stake is instructed to hold one annual 
conjoint conference, one yearly convention in the early 
fall, and one conference, if possible, alone. The Gener- 
al Board visit only the annual conferences and the yearly 
conventions. The time in the yearly conjoint conference is 
given up largely to the visiting members of the two General 
Boards. In the morning occur the business sessions, where 
ward officers report conditions, ask advice, and partic- 
ipate in discussions. Questions of local and general in- 
terest to Mutual Improvement workers are brought 
freely forward sometimes in the form of brief papers 
or topics and sometimes informally. Generally at such 
conferences, the stake boards or the officers of the ward 
where the conference is held bring to the hall sufficient re- 
freshments for the noon meal, so that the girls are not kept 
at home preparing hot dinners. The afternoon and evening 
sessions are open to the public, and formal or impromptu 
talks and sermons are delivered, as the stake officers may 
plan or desire. If the stake Y. L. M. I. A. president holds a 
mid- winter conference, in addition to her yearly conjoint con- 
ference and the convention, she usually moves that conference 

140 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

from town to town, calling it a district conference, thus bringing 
to each section of her stake the inspiration engendered by 
such a gathering. The work of the annual fall conventions 
will be treated in another chapter. 

From the initial effort of 1890, there soon grew up a 
settled policy in regard to the holding of general conferences 
by the two wings of Mutual work. The first day of June 
was chosen by Elder Junius F. Wells for these general annual 
conferences in honor of President Brigham Young's birthday, 
which occurs June 1st, as it was this great organizer who had 
set in motion both associations. June has proved to be a 
good month and some date near the first is still chosen for 
the conferences . From the small beginnings of twenty years 
ago, we have come to the mammoth gatherings of today, 
which rival the General Conferences of April and October, 
and which bring into Salt Lake City from five to ten thou- 
sand young people, coming all the way from Canada on the 
north to Mexico on the south. The work has been regulated 
and formalized, perhaps to a startling degree; but the vast 
multitude of eager youths who gather in the Tabernacle in 
these June conferences is sufficient evidence of the value of 
Mutual Improvement work. Perhaps a brief glimpse at the 
last conference held on June 3rd to 5th, 1910, will give as 
good an evidence of the strides made by the young people as 
any explanation might portray. 

The fifteenth general annual conference of the M. I. A. 
opened informally the night of June 3, 1910, with a beautiful 
reception, in the Bishop's building on East Temple street, 
tendered to the visiting officers by the two general Boards. 
The three upper floors were thrown open, the second and 
third floors being used as reception rooms, and the spacious 
hall on the fourth floor was used for dancing. Never have 
those elegant rooms and halls held a happier or finer audience. 
Young men from valley, forge and farm, from shop, office or 


college hall; united in one common bond of fellowship and 
good will; while the pure faces of Zion's daughters shone 
with the light of truth and virtue which radiates joy as 
flowers exhale perfume. The general authorities of the 
Church were nearly all present, the young people gathering 
around President Joseph F. Smith to grasp his hand like lov- 
ing children around a father. A trio of girls from near 
Mexico's line went about asking prettily to be introduced to 
one after another of the men and women of whom they had 
read so much, checking off each name from some mental list, 
and asking cheerily for the "next." There was an excellent 
program of music given on both the second and third floors, in. 
the halls of the Relief Society and the Y. L. M. I. A. $usic 
for reception and dancing was furnished by an orchestra of 
stringed instruments under the direction of Prof. William C. 

The general meetings of the conference in which the 
young ladies participated were programmed as follows: 




Friday Evening, June 3, 1910, 7:30 p. m., Bishop's 
Building, No. 40 North Main Street: Reception, Program 
and Dance, Complimentary to Delegates holding tickets, 
tendered by the General Boards of M. I. A. 

Y. L. M. /. A. Officers' Program: Saturday, June 4, 
10 a. m., Assembly Hall: Singing, "All Hail the Glorious 
Day," Congregation; Prayer, Counselor Ruth M. Fox; Solo, 
''I Know that my Redeemer Lives," Sylvia Ball; Greeting, 
President Martha H. Tingey; ^Lecture, "The Apostasy," 
May Booth Talmage; Lecture, "The Restoration of the Gos- 
pel," Osborne J. Widtsoe; Discussion; Singing "True to 
the Faith," Congregation; Benediction, President Sazie 
Heath of Pioneer Stake. 

142 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

Saturday, June 4, 2 p. m. Singing-, "O Thou Rock of 
our Salvation," Congregation; Prayer, Mary A. Freeze; 
Singing:, "Let the Holy Spirit Guide You," Congregation; 
Talks, "What can be done to stem the tide of evil sweep- 
ing- through the land," Dr. J. Lloyd Woodruff, Julia M. 
Brixen; Solo, "The Seer," Chorister Annie Hood of Star 
Valley; Address, President Joseph F. Smith; Singing-, "Ere 
the Sun Goes Down," Congregation; Benediction, President 
Zina B. Cannon of Granite Stake. 

Conjoint Y. L. and Y. M. M. I. A. Officers' Meeting: 
Sunday, June 5, 10 a. m., Tabernacle: Singing, "High on 
the Mountain Top," Congregation; Prayer, George H. Brim- 
hall; Singing, Ladies' Double Trio; Addresses on Conjoint 
Work: a. Debates, Dr. John A. Widtsoe; b. Music, Oscar 
A. Kirkham. Solo, "The Valley of the Shadow," John Rob- 
inson; c. Drama, Alice C. Tuddenham; d. Reading and 
Story Telling, Emma Goddard. Speeches limited to from 
five to ten minutes with discussion after each subject. Sing- 
ing, "O Thou Rock of Our Salvation," Congregation; Ben- 
ediction, Agnes S. Campbell. 

Conjoint General Meetings of M. L A. and Primary Asso- 
ciations: Sunday, June 5, 2 p. m., Tabernacle. Singing, 
"Glorious Things of Thee are Spoken," Tabernacle Choir; 
Prayer, Joseph W. McMurrin; Singing, "The Morning Breaks, 
the Shadows Flee," Tabernacle Choir; Presentation of Gen- 
eral M. I. A. and Primary Officers; Opening Address, Pres- 
ident Martha H. Tingey; Anthem, "Grant us Peace, O 
Lord!" Tabernacle Choir; Address, President Joseph F. 
Smith; Eulogy on Life and Character of John Hafen, Presi- 
dent Heber J. Grant; Singing, Children of Ensign Stake; 
Remarks, Emma Ramsey Morris of the Primary Associa- 
tion; Singing, "God is our Refuge and Strength," Taber- 
nacle Choir; Benediction, President Louie B. Felt of Primary 

Sunday Evening, June 5, 7 p. m., Tabernacle: Singing, 
Come, Come ye Saints," Congregation; Prayer, President 
John Henry Smith; Solo, Melvin Peterson; Lecture, "Be Ye 
Clean," George H. Brimhall; Singing, "Mother's Lullaby," 
Ladies' Chorus of Pioneer Stake, under direction of Mabel 
Cooper; Remarks, President Joseph F. Smith in behalf of 


the Primary Association; Singing-, Young- Ladies of Pioneer 
Stake; Benediction, President Anthon H. Lund. 

The alert interest displayed by every member present at 
these great gathering's, the frequent note-book, the lively 
discussion, even in the awe-inspiring: spaces of the big Tab- 
ernacle, the choice music, the earnest speakers, with the de- 
corum and precision of every detail, proved the high stand- 
ard now struck for " Mutual" work. Our young people are 
described by outside observers as grave, serious, lacking in 
humor and full of purpose. They may be so yet are they 
also progressive and enthusiastic. Never have they shown 
themselves truer descendants of the serious Puritans, Hugue- 
nots, Lutherans and Dissenters than in the splendid activities 
of M. I. work. 

Such then is the condition and the labor of the army of 
young people, seventy thousand of them, gathered in local, 
stake and general capacities in annual conferences as- 



Sister Eardley has the honor of being the first aid ever 
placed in a board. In June, 1889, she was sustained as an 
aid to the General Board of the Y. L.M.I. A., and has labored 
most faithfully in that capacit}^ ever since. Agnes Camp- 
bell was the first one spoken to by Sister Taylor, but when 
they were really voted for, Sister Eardley was placed first on 
account of being older. 

She was born July 31, 1857, in Salt Lake City. Her father 
was the well-known bishop of the Ninth ward, Samuel Wool- 
ley. Her parents were both pioneers, and were of the strong, 
splendid stuff out of which the foundations of the Church 
were laid. Adella joined the Ninth ward Retrenchment 



Association in 1873, and she has worked in the associations 
ever since. She attended the dedication of the St. George 
Temple in 1877, and was married the following- year. She 
was president of the Third ward Primary Association for ten 
years, and secretary of the Mutual for twelve years in the 
same ward. She visited the New Orleans Exposition in 

company with the 
president of the 
Southern States 
Mission, Elder 
John Morgan.and a 
number of friends. 
In 1889 she took a 
trip to Pennsylva- 
nia, and visited 
the birth place of 
her mother in or- 
der to collect gen- 
ealogy. She was 
one of Utah's dele- 
gates to theWorld's 
Congress of Wom- 
en in Chicago in 
1893. When the 
standing commit- 
tees were organ- 
ized in the General 
Board, Sister Eard- 
ley was at once 
chosen to act on 
the Joiirnal com- 
mittee. She served 
also for years on 
the Guide commit- 
ADELLA w. EARDLEY. tee and Traveling 

Library commit- 
tee and is now chairman of the Journal committee. 

She is a true daughter of her father, gifted with keen 
business ability, shrewd and far-sighted, yet generous where 
generosity is required. She is open-hearted and frank, is a 
wise counselor and one of the best business helps on the 


Board. Sister Eardley is a prudent mother and her children 
do her honor. She has been an active and faithful member 
of the Board in all weather and under all conditions, ever 
since she became associated with it. The trials and strug- 
gles which life has brought to her have developed the 
pure gold of her sterling nature. She is a woman of strong and 
enlightened opinions, and once convinced, it is not an easy 
matter to persuade her otherwise. With such strong convic- 
tions, she may sometimes form incorrect conclusions; but 
once prove to her that she is in the wrong, and her noble 
nature quickly responds to the truth you present. To know 
Sister Eardley is to respect and honor her as a Saint and as 
a broad-minded woman. She stands for the elevation of the 
spiritual in practical matters in the studies and pleasures of 
the girls, as she does for the exaltation of the practical in all 
spiritual matters. Perhaps the most attractive side of her 
character is her manifest power to grow. Some good people 
there are, and some clever who attain a certain degree of 
intelligence .and then stop. But Sister Eardley has kept her 
brain bright through choice reading.her heart big through con- 
stant contact and sympathy with the young, and her spirit 
keenly attuned to the harmony of the Gospel plan. 


The parents of Sarah Eddington came to Utah in 1853. 
Her father is one of the historical figures of the general tith- 
ing office in Salt Lake City. While strong and firm, as a 
man should be, he is also very tender in his association with 
his family. The mother was of the same gentle and refined 
type from which mould her daughter was fashioned. 

Sarah was born and reared in the Fourteenth ward, Salt 
Lake City. She is a student, and loves books as some girls 
love play. She attended the public schools in her youth, 
and graduated into the State University. Owing to a severe 
accident in falling from a swing, her spine was injured, and 
her university work ended in the beginning of the second 
year's course. But her delicate health did not prevent her 
from attending to her spiritual duties. She was a teacher in 
the Seventh ward Sunday School for years, and was pres- 
ident of the Y. L. M. I. A. for eight years in the same ward. 
During her presidency, some of the most profitable features 

146 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

of M. I. work were originated and carried to a successful 
issue. Some of these ideas have since been incorporated into 
the general work of the associations. She is a quiet but 
ardent and successful political worker, doing- in her modest 
way many things that a more aggressive girl would fail in. 


She worked as chief clerk in the auditor's office for four years, 
was deputy in the same office for two years, and now is em- 
ployed in the county recorder's office. She is an impressive 
and poetic speaker and has exerted a wonderful influence 
among the girls. She is sweet and gentle in all her ministra- 
tions, and yet beneath the womanly softness lingers a 


strength and a determination of purpose which one would 
scarcely expect from a personality so tender and gentle. She 
is beloved, not only by all members of her Board, but by 
every young- woman in Zion who has been fortunate enough 
to partake of her friendship and loving- ministrations. 

Miss Eddington has also served on many committees 
with dilig-ence and wide capacity. Perhaps her most valu- 
able contribution has been while chairman of the Traveling: 
Library committee. She has brought her committee in di- 
rect contact with every ward librarian. The books have 
been rigidly scrutinized, all undesirable ones eliminated, 
and carefully selected ones put into all libraries. She is of 
such delicate mental fiber herself that she feels the evil at- 
mosphere of a book as men sense frauds in business life. 

Such in brief is the labor of one of the most valued and 
valuable members of the General Board. 


The daughter of one of the famous Scotch Campbells, 
whose line runs back on the maternal side to William Wal- 
lace, Agnes Campbell inherits the best qualities of her shrewd 
and brave ancestors. She is the soul of honor and probity, 
and never a suspicion of double-dealing or duplicity could 
assail her upright character. She possesses a cheery, sweet 
nature with a deep stream of pure charity rolling far below 
the surface, carrying her soul away with its sweep into the 
regions of a secret but divine joy that bliss which the 
angels know when some secret, self-sacrificing deed has lift- 
ed their pure spirits into the joy of a sanctified heaven . 

Agnes early began her public work. She was first 
called to the presidency of the Fourteenth ward Y. L. M. I. A., 
Salt Lake City. She chose Miss Lizzie Green and Mrs. Rida 
C. Taylor as her counselors, and Miss Maggie Taylor as sec- 
retary. She also had Miss Ann M. Cannon as treasurer, Miss 
Mae Taylor as assistant secretary, and Belle Morris as or- 
ganist. This was rather a remarkable group of young wom- 
en, as their subsequent history proves. They were installed 
in office September 24th, 1888. It was while she was in that 
position that Sister Elmina S. Taylor decided to call her to 
act as an aid on the General Board. Agnes also kept up her 
work in her own ward . At this time she was engaged in the 



office of Z. C. M. I. at a good salary, and was already plan- 
ning- to save money, so that she might help to build a home 
for her mother. The family had been deprived of the father 
in 1874, and the girls at once set about making themselves 
independent. Agnes had inherited her father's business 
qualities so that she carried along her private and public 

duties with little 
difficulty. In 
1895 she re- 
moved to the 
Twentieth ward, 
and re signed her 
position as presi- 
dent in the Four- 
teenth ward aft- 
er ten years of 
active service. 
On February 
26th, 1898, she 
was elected pres- 
ident of the 
Twentieth ward 
Y. L. M. I. A. 
Here again she 
did conscien- 
tious work, for 
she could do 
nothing else. 
She was now 
very busy buy- 
ing a small spot 
of ground at the 
head of State 
street, where 
her longing eyes 
had rested for 
many years. It was purchased, and the modest, pretty home 
was begun. In one year the house was built, and the girls 
with their mother were cosily settled under their own roof- 
tree. She resigned her position in the Twentieth ward Y. L. 
M. I. A. in 1901, on account of her removal to the Eighteenth 



ward where her new home was. She left her work in the big 
"Co-op" store in 1899, and accepted the position of assistant 
secretary in the Board, receiving- a small salary for attending 
to the growing- volume of clerical work attached to this posi- 
tion. When Miss Neff needed some assistance in the Journal 
office, Miss Campbell was engaged for that position, and 
here she has labored ever since; ready in season and out of 
season for every call made upon her. 

Those who see Agnes Campbell in her bustling- busi- 
ness career have little conception of the other life devoted to 
the poor, the needy, the emigrant, the struggling- artist, the 
widowed mother, and orphaned children. She has converted 
more people to the glory of Temple labor than any one the 
writer knows. She has constituted herself a minister pleni- 
potentiary between the living spirits of the dead and the dead 
spirits of the living, until her name is a synonym of Temple 
achievements. The beauty of her life lies, like her charity, 
far below the surface, and her shrinking: refusal to allow 
mention of her good works but signifies the true simplicity of 
her genuine, loving heart. 

In recent years, Miss Campbell has devoted herself en- 
tirely to the M. I. A. work. As assistant secretary, and now 
as business manager of the fournal^ she is always found at 
the office, cheery, helpful, willing and industrious. 


Lillie Tuckett Freeze was born in Salt Lake City, March 
26th, 1855, in the First ward. When she was six years old, 
she went with her grandmother to help pioneer the country 
of Dixie, settling in St. George. Here she assisted, although 
such a tiny girl, in the erection of their first willow house. 
She possessed an indomitable energy and ambition, which 
was often gratified at the expense of her best health. Indeed, 
while still a very young girl, she permanently injured her- 
self with the heavy work she would undertake. But few 
know the arduous nature of the work done by the only girl 
in a family left orphans by the death of the mother. She was 
of an independent nature, and found work for herself outside 
the home to help with her own expenses. She labored in 
Wallace & Evans' candy factory after her father married the 

150 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

second time. When sixteen she earned money enough to 
send herself to Morgan's high, school. She was ambitious, 
artistic, intense, and full of personal magnetism. Parties, 
picnics and private theatricals had a charm for her sparkling 
nature which she could not resist, having inherited from her 
mother, Mercy West wood Tuckett, a gifted pioneer actress, 
a love for the stage, though she never ventured beyond ward 


entertainments for church benefits. With it all, she had 
purity and a deep foundation of spirituality, which saved her 
from undue temptation or excess. 

When the Junior Retrenchment Association was organ- 
ized in the Eleventh ward, in 1870, Lillie joined almost at 


first. Here she found scope for the spiritual powers with 
which her nature is so richly gifted, and here, also, she could 
exercise her varied talents in many directions. She was 
soon chosen to assist in the work, and later acted as secre- 
tary. It was here she became intimately acquainted with 
Mary A. Freeze, the first wife of James P. Freeze, and that 
perfect friendship was begun which neither death nor mis- 
fortune can lessen or cut asunder. She was married to James 
P. Freeze June 14th, 1875, and went into the order of plural 
marriage with as chaste and holy principles as ever actuated 
a Hebrew woman of old. She has endeavored to live in that 
order as reverently and as consistently as a mortal woman 
might do; and her reward is in the three fine children 
who are devoted to their mother. Her strong domestic quali- 
ties make a peaceful, happy home where affection rules with 
powerful yet gentle sway. 

Lillie was chosen by Sister Taylor as an aid-at-large for 
the General Board of the Y. L. M. I. A. in the spring of 
1890. She was already on the General Board of the Primary 
Association, having been chosen by President Louie B. Felt 
as general secretary of that board in 1880; and in 1888, 
President Felt took her as first counselor in the place of Sister 
Matilda Barratt whose resignation had become necessary .It 
was the thought of President E. S. Taylor that it would be 
an advantage to both associations to have Lillie act in a 
double capacity, as she traveled a good deal, and could thus 
represent both organizations when it was impossible to send 
two. However, no more successful candidate could be found 
to fill two such responsible offices. Afterwards the title "aid- 
at-large" was made simply "aid," like that of the other sis- 
ters, as she did practically the same work. 

Sister Freeze's spirit, always loving, intensely sympa- 
thetic and tender, was deepened and broadened by her mel- 
lowing experiences, as crushed flowers often yield more fra- 
grance, until she is like a vision of love and faith made in- 
carnate; for every moment of her life for these many years 
has been marred by physical pain, sometimes almost too 
great for human endurance. Yet she has borne all with 
cheerful and hopeful fortitude, bravely resisting discourage- 
ment and gloom and willingly working for the comfort of 
home, friends and the public good, persistently undertaking 

152 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

labor from which strong women shrank. During- the ' 'raid, ' ' 
Sister Freeze suffered in common with those in similar posi- 
tions, accentuated, in her case, with bodily weakness and 
distress. Within the last seven years she has been the vic- 
tim of two serious accidents, both of which nearly ended her 
life. She felt compelled to resign from her position in the 
Young Ladies' Board in the autumn of 1904, because of de- 
clining health and other pressing cares. It was a great trial 
for Sister Taylor to lose her, for there had always been the 
closest ties of friendship between them. However, Sister 
Freeze was released. Then came her second severe accident, 
making her an invalid for over a year. She insisted that she 
be also released from her office on the Primary General 
Board, for her condition made it impossible for her to travel 
to attend meetings and other duties. She was released as a 
counselor but retained as a member of the Board, so that now 
she is quietly living her life of lovely seclusion, never for- 
gotten nor less loved by the many women with whom she has 

Lillie has written much for the women's magazines and 
has shown rich tones of undeveloped poesy and touching 
prose. She has several of the gifts of the spirit in rich abun- 
dance; and her presence in a meeting is an assurance of a 
rich spiritual feast. She has faith and the charity which 
vaunts not itself, but is kind; she has the gifts of speaking 
in tongues and of interpreting tongues, the gift of prophecy, 
and above all she abounds in wisdom that wisdom which 
exalts not riches nor reviles against sorrow. She has garnered 
up the treasures while the day lasted, but hopes to labor much 
longer for the women and children of Zion. 



The first reports. Annual dues. Traveling expenses. Permanent 
Fund Dime Fund. Comparative statements of General Board 
expenses. Labors of the different secretaries and treasurers. 
Later reports. 

THE story of figures is interesting 1 , for they speak in no 
uncertain tones. Therefore, it is hoped the reader 
will be repaid in the perusal of the results of a long search 
through the earlier statistics of the Mutual Improvement As- 

The General, or Central Board, as it was first called, 
was organized June 19, 1880, with Mrs. Elmina S. Taylor as 
president, and Miss Louie Wells as secretary. There were 
no conferences of a general nature held until ten years later. 
Each ward and each stake was a law unto itself in a large 
way, with the helpful assistance given by the General Board. 
The work was entirely tentative, and the various officers 
were feeling their way upward through slow and difficult 
stages. In this day it is difficult to imagine how heavy the 
burden of organization and management fell upon the unac- 
customed shoulders of those women. Today things have be- 
come so perfectly adjusted that everything runs with clock- 
like precision. In those early times, there were no Church 
schools, no clubs and no Women's Councils from which to 
glean ideas; these Mormon girls were finding their way alone 
and unaided up the thorny path of progress. They asked 
for no assistance from their male companions and relatives, 
for all alike felt the necessity of individual development for 

Credit must be given where it is due; and it is to be re- 

154 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

membered that the Young- Ladies' Association had before 
them the examples and labors of the Relief Society, the pio- 
neer society among- all women, from which to draw help and 
inspiration. It is also true, however, that the two societies 
are very dissimilar in methods and purposes, so only a gen- 
eral assistance could be drawn from this source. 

The first general reports were collected by Miss Louie 
Wells in 1885, in response to an invitation from the president 
of the Church to have the statistics of the women's organiza- 
tions read before the General Conference in Salt Lake City. 
The reports and records of those early days partook of the 
pioneer conditions still maintaining. Minutes of the loca] 
associations were taken faithfully enough, but they were not, 
alas, always preserved. Taken in lead pencil and kept by 
the youthful secretary herself, they were subject to all the 
ills that attend house-cleaning and hurricanes raised by small 
brothers; and even when duly recorded in various stiff-backed 
account books (which were usually employed in those prim- 
itive times) the secretary had a most disconcerting way of 
getting herself married off. Who was to remember Y. L. 
M. I. A. minutes in all that excitement? However, consid- 
ering all things, there was a very good account made of the 
ward affairs to the stake president twice a year, and these 
were gathered into a stake report semi-annually and sent off 
to headquarters. This most bewildering array of statistics, 
which obstinately refused to balance, threatened to drive the 
secretary of the General Board into nervous prostration dur- 
ing the few days remaining after their receipt, in which she 
endeavored to balance things up and bring in a report to the 
General Conference. 

It is most interesting to scan the first documents made 
and from them to learn something of the inner workings of 
the various stake and ward affairs. The headings of the 
items reported share in the old fashioned atmosphere. In 


the first report we find only ten stakes reported, out of the 
twenty-five stakes then in existence. The items noted are: 
"Number of meetings held;" ''number of members;" "aver- 
age attendance;" "number of chapters" (read in the Scrip- 
tures) and "miscellaneous reading's." The manuscript pa- 
pers were a strong feature of most of the associations, and 
we have a total of one hundred and fifty- seven manuscript 
papers read as representing the ten stakes in 1885. The 
"testimonies borne," or, as such a feature might be called 
in the parlance of the world, "extemporaneous speeches," 
are carefully noted, as this has always been the most 
important element of the detail work: namely, that the mem- 
bers shall become acquainted with the art of giving public 
expression to the hope of eternal life that is within them. 
Essays were also a prominent part of their evening pro- 
grams, and they were duly reported. Even in the beginning 
good books formed a portion of the property of every associ- 
ation. These books were a few of the novels, some histories 
and books of travel. The poets and "The Speaker's Gar- 
land" were among their most prized books of reference. 
There were also the Bible and the Book of Mormon, and, all 
too seldom even then, the poems of our own Eliza R. Snow. 
There were one thousand and fourteen books reported as be- 
longing to these ten stakes which sent in a report in 1885. 
This was not a bad showing for the young and scattered as- 

The stakes had not yet accumulated any funds, so that 
the money reported to be on hand or disbursed was contained 
in the treasuries of the local wards, and represented various 
activities. We find the wards comprised in those ten stakes 
in 1885 to be possessed of $1,724.84. Of this sum $791.42 
was in properties, and $280.06 in cash; there was received 
during the year, $653.36 in cash; $643.93 cash was disbursed ; 
and there remained in the treasury, $693.53 in property, with 

156 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

$486.09 in cash. Of course the balances were wrong-; but it 
was primitive book-keeping 1 . 

The blanks upon which these reports were made were 
first arranged by Miss Wells in 1885. The forms remained 
the same until after Miss Cannon came into the work in 1891. 
The gradual change in the methods and the studies required 
constant changes in the forms of reports. In 1892 there were 
thirty-two stakes and this number was continually increasing. 
There are now sixty-two stake organizations with several 
outside mission associations, both in this country and in 
Europe, Australia, and the islands of the sea. At the con- 
ference of the stake and general officers in 1892, the name of 
the board was changed from Central to General Board. The 
annual stake dues were also increased to $2.00. It was de- 
cided by the visiting officers at the conference, in October, 
1893, to ask each ward to give an entertainment within the 
next six months, the proceeds of which were to be formed 
into a "permanent fund ' for the use of the General Board. 
Expenses were increasing with the development of the work. 
Letters poured in with increasing volume. There were dues 
and partial expenses of delegates to the great eastern con- 
ventions. The stakes were clamoring for more and more 
visits from members of the General Board; and while these 
expenses were then met by the stakes themselves, yet the far- 
off stakes were the poorest and least able to send for visitors, 
and they most needed them. Whenever possible, Mrs. Tay- 
lor would raise means and send visitors to these distant 
towns and villages. It cost only a small amount to send a 
representative to Provo or Ogden, yet these two places were 
able to pay twenty times as much as were most of the dis- 
tant and newly organized stakes in Colorado and New Mexico. 
There was something needing adjustment here, and the first 
plan adopted was to secure a large sum by voluntary contri- 
butions from the various stakes, and then use the interest of 


the permanent fund for traveling: and other expenses. There 
were some sanguine members and officers who thought this 
plan woiild solve the whole difficulty. But how little they 
understood with what rapidity the work was destined to 
grow! However, the wards responded to the suggestion of 
forming the permanent fund with a hearty generosity which 
surprised and touched all concerned. There was collected 
seven hundred sixty- three dollars in this manner, and that 
sum now lies in the bank; the interest of it is used as it was 
first intended. The nice sense of honor in our beloved Presi- 
dent Elmina S. Taylor was never more admirably shown 
than in her accurate and keenly honest actions in all financial 
matters. If money were donated for a certain purpose, it 
nrnst be used for that purpose and no other. There has 
never been the least infringement on the central fund for 
any purpose but that set down in the implied agreement. 
She was careful to a cent in the spending of other people's 
money, but liberality itself when it came to her own means. 

The matter of securing more funds and in a regular way 
had been discussed many times in the Board, but no better 
plan decided upon. In 1894 President Taylor and Aid Sarah 
Eddington were traveling to Star Valley in company with 
Brothers George Goddard and George Reynolds of the Sun- 
day School Board. Something was said by Brother Reynolds 
to Sister Taylor about the cost of her journey and who pro- 
vided the means as well as the many other heavy expenses 
incident to her labor. 

1 'Does not the Church help you at times, Sister Taylor, in 
these financial matters?" 

"Never," she answered, "not to the extent of five cents! 
We've never asked the Church for anything except sympathy 
and counsel." 

"Well, I am surprised," answered Brother Reynolds, 
"for I know that organizations of men must be helped occa- 

158 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

sionally with their finances. I don't see how you women can 
get along, when as a rule you do not have the resources that 
men do." 

"Ah! but women are always independent if they have 
half a chance!" she said. 

"Well, how do you do to raise money? Do you tax each 
of your members fifty cents a year, as the Young- Men's As- 
sociation do?" 

"No; the associations help us out whenever we ask 
them, and we do a great deal ourselves towards bearing our 
own expenses." 

"It seems to me you should have a fund, Sister Taylor; 
and you could easily raise sufficient if a small sum were paid 
annually by each member.' ' 

"The Sunday Schools have an annual fee of five cents 
each, do they not?" asked Sister Taylor. 

Brother Reynolds answered, "Yes; the children each 
give five cents, biit that is too small a sum for young- ladies 
to pay," he added. "Theyoug-ht to be able to pay ten cents 
each at least. By doing- without chewing: g-um for a month 
that could be managed easily." 

Sister Taylor laugfhed and thanked Brother Reynolds for 
this kind interest and good advice. 

The conversation was reported by Sister Taylor to the 
Board, and action was taken at the very next meeting, Sep- 
tember 4th, 1894. 

A suggestion was made at a subsequent meeting of stake 
and general officers that there should be established a dime 
fund, each member of the associations paying ten cents a 
year as her contribution towards the carrying forward of the 
Mutual Improvement work. As the season's work began in 
the early fall, it would be convenient to select a day in Sep- 
tember for Annual Day. What day so appropriate and so 
choice as the 12th of September, which was the birthday of our 


revered and never-to-be-forgotten president, Elmina S. Tay- 
lor? Every member of the Board caught up the idea with 
enthusiasm, and in spite of the protests of the president her- 
self, the matter was carried through, and the 12th of Septem- 
ber became the Annual Day. On this day the girls were in- 
structed to arrange some festivities, to invite the parents and 
authorities of the ward, and to make the occasion one of 
good cheer. The dime was to be brought as an individual 

At first, the stakes retained one-fourth of the sum col- 
lected, but it was found that the whole sum was needed for 
general expenses. So, on motion of Zina Y. Card, president 
of the Y. L. M. I. A. of Alberta stake, at an officers' meet- 
ing held April 5th, 1897, it was decided to turn the entire 
sum over to the general fund. The stakes have various ways 
of raising funds for their own expenses, as before noted. 
Whatever is the way adopted, one thing may be confidently 
stated, none of them are ever in debt. That bugbear of civil 
and religious life, when administered by men, has never yet 
troubled these women's organizations. 

It will be interesting to give a few statistics of the dime 
fund, both in expenditure and income. It will be understood 
that the term general expense covers such items as postage, 
stationery, office rent, roll books and the printing of circulars, 
etc. The National Council dues are the same each year. 


Receipts : 

Dime Fund from 36 stakes $465.95 

Disbursements : 

General expense 47.65 

Traveling expense 429.70 

Clerical expense 1.00 

Guide work 110.00 

Dues National Council of Women of U. S. . . 33.35 

Total $621.70 

160 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

FOR THE YEAR 1905. . 


Dime Fund from 56 stakes $1,888.30 

Disbursements : 

General expense $ 101.80 

Guide expense 350.00 

Traveling- expense. 888.90 

Clerical expense. 480.00 

Dues National Council of Women of U. S. - 33.32 

Total $1,844.02 

The expenses of the year 1895, it will be observed, run 
far ahead of the income of the association. But there was 
the permanent fund to draw from at that time, and it was 
the first year of the collection of the new fund, so it was not 
expected that there would be sufficient then to cover the 
year's expenditures. This was also one of the years in which 
delegates were sent to the Triennial Council at Washington, 
and therefore an unusual amount of money was spent. The 
Triennials are held, as the name implies, once in three years. 
Only the bare traveling expenses of' the two delegates are 
ever paid, all personal expenditures being at the individual's 
own responsibility. There was no office hire at this time. 
Later, in July, 1897, when the Journal office was opened in 
the Constitution building, it was decided that the General 
Board should pay half the office rent of these rooms, and the 
Journal the other half. Then came the necessity of hiring 
clerical work. Conferences increased; this portion of the 
work grew rapidly. As travel increased it required hours 
and days of the secretaries' time to buy tickets, look up 
routes, arrange details and keep the whole machinery of the 
constant traveling in motion; and the labor involved can 
never be understood nor appreciated by those who are not 
familiar with the details. The opening of an office also meant 



the services of some one to answer calls and inquiries. For 
a few years, Miss Estelle Neff, who was the business agent 
of the [ournal, attended to this work, as she was in the office 
necessarily but it at last became impracticable. 

As the membership of the association increased, the cor- 
respondence multiplied. The meetings of the General Board 


were held monthly at first, then bi-monthly, and later weekly. 
The correspondence and the taking- and recording- of the 
weekly Board minutes, tog-ether with the conference minutes 
and the making of the yearly reports were too engrossing 
and heavy for one person to carry forward without taking all 
of her time. Accordingly, on October 9th, 1892, Miss Mae 

162 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

Taylor was appointed corresponding secretary for the Gen- 
eral Board. She was of great assistance in that position, be- 
ing under the same roof as her mother. But the work still 
grew and even the two secretaries were unable to attend to 
the duties, in the intervals of their own work; for Miss Can- 
non was at that time a clerk in an office, and Miss Taylor 
was engaged as a teacher of physical culture. On the 
llth of September, 1894, Miss Joan M. Campbell was ap- 
pointed recording secretary, and she worked faithfully 
and well. Miss Mae Taylor married in 1900 and moved 
away; after which Miss Agnes Campbell was made assistant 
secretary. After the return of Mae Taylor Nystrom she was 
re-appointed corresponding secretary, but in 1904 that office 
was done away with and she became treasurer, continuing as 
such until the reorganization of the General Board in 1905, 
when Mrs. Alice K. Smith was appointed treasurer. Neither 
Sister Nystrom nor Sister Smith had had experience in book- 
keeping, accordingly each, at the time of her appointment, 
took a thorough course in that study, the consequence being 
that their books are kept in the most up-to-date manner. 

The stakes soon began to find the necessity of having 
funds to pay postage, traveling and other incidental expenses. 
For a while these needs were met by the one-fourth of the 
dime fund which was kept by the stake; but when this was 
all given to the General Board, it became necessary to pro- 
vide for their own wants. Therefore, the stakes met the 
need first by holding fairs, bazaars or other public entertain- 
ments; later some of them decided to call upon the ward as- 
sociations* for a small yearly sum, to be devoted solely to the 
stake uses. So that the stakes began to make financial re- 
ports, which were also included in the big general report. 

In no other feature of the M. I. work has there been 
greater advancement made than in the financial and statisti- 
cal labors performed by the secretary of the organization. 


Comparative statistics offer a simple and clear method of un- 
derstanding: the strides of progress made along financial lines . 
Let us glance then at the totals given in 1895, in 1905 and in 
1909, staying at various points to particularize on special 


In 1895, 14,884 members in 406 wards. 
In 1905, 25,770 members in 581 wards. 
In 1909, 26,364 members in 673 wards. 


In 1895, stake and ward 5,970 

In 1905, in ward libraries, 12,646; in stake 

traveling libraries, 2,776. Total, 15,422 

In 1909, in ward libraries, 20,620; in stake 

traveling libraries, 4,001 Total, 24,621 


Cash Disbursements: 

In 1895,, by wards and stakes (no sep- 
arate report made). $6,216.81 

In 1905, by wards, $10,274.56; by stakes, $4,572.57 
In 1909, by wards, $16,948.93; by stakes, $4,574.45 

Balance Cash on Hand: 

At close of 1895, in wards and stakes $ 3,669.71 

At close of 1905, in wards, $5,492.84, in 

stakes,$10,795.07 Total, $16,287.91 

At close of 1909, in wards, $5,800.71, in 

stakes, $2,003.73 Total, $ 7,804.44 

The last printed reports (1909) are models of concise- 
ness and compressed information . They do not ignore the 
quaint and invaluable statistics of the number of "testimo- 
nies borne" nor the bewildering figures representing the 
number of "home readings;" yet the labors of the various 

164 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

ward, stake and general officers have been so systematized and 
tabulated that one sees at a glance how vast is the work ac- 
complished by this army of eager, unpaid and loving "band 
of sisters." Briefly, there were in the year 1909, 673 ward 
associations, of which 654 reported. There were 26,364 reg- 
ular members enrolled in these associations, with 1,454 tran- 
sient members. There were 700 stake officers, and there 
was an average attendance at regular meetings of 13,423 
members. The Mutuals were represented in the mission 
fields by 35 girls preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ. The 
temporary absence of members at colleges, visiting or at 
work at other places, totaled 1,731. These usually joined, as 
transient members, the ward associations where they found 
themselves. The statistics of ward officers' meetings held 
during the year totaled 5,716; conjoint meetings of officers, 
3,155; of regular ward meetings there were 20,182, with 
5,248 conjoint meetings, and 1,854 ward socials. 

The visits made by all officers are carefully tabulated- 
The wards were visited 3,688 times by stake officers, and as 
a rule there were two officers on each visit. The wards re- 
porting visits by members of the General Board were 108 1 
but in reality there were many more, as some members of the 
General Board attend regularly in their own wards; while the 
stakes received 117 visits from members of the General 

Perhaps the most interesting statistics are those pertain" 
ing to the exercises performed in the associations and at 
home. The theological study for 1909 took up the teachings 
of our Savior; and of these there were 4,659 lessons prepared 
and given by the senior members, and 3,619 by the junior 
girls. In the literary studies there were 3,976 exercises 
given in the senior department and 1,465 recitals by the 
junior, girls. The literary department included "Walden," 
by Thoreau; "The Rivals," by Sheridan, etc. 


Some extremely valuable lessons were given in the 
Home studies, and of these the senior girls prepared 1,604 
lessons, with 1,522 exercises given on the same topics by the 
junior girls. There were 383 talks on ''Human Culture" 
given by various speakers, and 38,841 "Testimonies Borne," 
and 12,305 musical selections were rendered in addition to 
the opening and closing congregational singing. 

Some of the Y. L. M. I. A. have followed the custom of 
the Y. M. M. I. A. and adjourned for the summer months. 
This custom has been deprecated by our General Board and 
the girls are encouraged to hold summer sessions wherever 
possible. No lessons are prepared by the General Board for 
these summer meetings, and the stake and ward officers 
choose whatever topics seem best suited to their local con- 
ditions. It is reported that 370 associations continue during 
the summer, and in some of these the young men work con- 
jointly with the young ladies. 

The reading done by the Mutual girls at home is duly 
reported and chronicled. They read 714,489 chapters in fic- 
tion; 166,107 poems; 35,298 essays; 125,745 chapters of his- 
tory; 2,037,847 chapters in the ancient and modern Scrip- 
tures; then there were 764,258 readings not classified but re- 
ported as miscellaneous. (This is a partial report only, as 
many acknowledge that they kept no record of this kind.) 
The details of local and stake financial conditions are also 
important: In 1909 the ward totals showed cash on hand at 
last report, January 1st, 1909, $6,242.54; cash received, $16,- 
507.10, which makes a total of $22,749.64; cash disbursed, 
$16,948.93; balance on hand, December 31st, 1909, $5,800.71, 
making the same total . The stake treasuries reported cash on 
hand, January 1st, 1909, $2,357.85; cash received, $4,220.34; 
total, $6,578.19; cash disbursed, $4,574.46; balance on hand, 
December 31st, 1909, $2,003.73; same total. When we 
come to the stake statistics, we find there were 960 stake 

166 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

board meeting's held during- the year 1909, with 446 con- 
joint stake board meetings held. Of conjoint M. I. A. con- 
ferences there were held 49, and 61 conventions. Then the 
youngf ladies held 34 separate, usually district, conferences. 
It has become an established custom to give the Sunday 
evening- of the quarterly stake conferences into the hands of 
the M. I. A.; of these there were 209 meeting's held during 
the past year. 

The g-eneral expenses of the association furnish a clear 
picture of the careful manipulation of all funds committed in 
trust to the general officers. It should be stated that every 
detail of office expense, of traveling expenditures and of gen- 
eral disbursements is faithfully reported and as carefully re- 
corded. We have space only for the totals, but invite in- 
spection as to every item: 


Receipts: 1909. 

Interest $ 186.78 

Dime Fund from 61 stakes 2,199.38 

Total $2,386.16 

Disbursemen ts : 

Traveling expense $1,028.48 

Guide expense 212.10 

Clerical expense 720.00 . 

General expense 357.00 

Dues National Council of Women of U. S. 33.33 

Total $2,350.91 

In these reports the names and addresses of the entire 
stake boards are given, as well as of the executive officers and 
the Journal agent of each ward, thus furnishing a general 
roster of the stakes. The blanks on which these reports are 


made were purchased for the first five years; after the Dime 
fund was well established, the general secretary suggested 
they be furnished to the wards free of charge. This was 
done. Then came the question of roll books. Each associ" 
ation was required to keep a roll of its members and to in- 
clude in the general statistics the various points called for in 
the reports. At first these roll books were bought by each 
association at the book store at quite a high figure. The 
first reform was made when General Secretary Cannon was 
instructed to undertake the printing of these blanks and roll 
books, to furnish them to the associations at actual cost; but 
even that did not satisfy her. She next proposed, and the 
proposition carried, that they should be furnished free of 
cost, so that while the wards were assisting in the general 
expenses, the general fund was being returned to them in 
various ways. Another improvement made by Miss Cannon 
must be noted. Ward and stake boards were instructed to 
make duplicate reports , one to send to headquarters and one 
to file in their own archives. This they had rarely done. It 
was felt to be a disaster; for at times the stake and General 
boards were appealed to to fill up duplicate blanks, or to 
furnish items from various reports which had been sent to 
headquarters without retaining proper copies. With this in 
mind, in 1903 the general secretary prepared new roll books 
with pages in the back of the book, suitably ruled and let- 
tered for the duplicate yearly reports. This addition has 
been found of great value and convenience. It will be nec- 
essary to state that the wards make annual reports to the stake 
secretary, who compiles them and sends her stake report once 
a year to the general secretary in Salt Lake City, in time to be 
compiled in the mammoth general report which is read in 
conjoint M. I. A. conference in June of each year. 

The roll books and the treasurers' books of the local, 
stake and also the General Board are open for inspection to 

168 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I.. A. 

any members. The future historian and student will find 
much food for sociological study, in the various carefully 
compiled statistics of a woman's social corporation. In all 
the years until September 1907, the secretary general labored 
without pay. There was considerable clerical work hired, 
but the actual labors of the secretary were as freely and as 
generously given as those of the other general officers. For 
five years the secretary, Miss Cannon, was editor of the 
Journal, and this heavy labor interfered seriously with her 
duties as secretary. After much deliberation, it was decided 
to release her from the editorship, and confine her labors to 
the secretaryship, which had come to assume such great pro- 
portions. Accordingly a modest salary was appropriated in 
1907, and Miss Cannon devoted all her time to the splendid 
work she was now accomplishing as the secretary of the Gen- 
eral Board. 

The secretary and her assistants had always kept records 
of the regular board meetings, and the annual conference 
sessions. These records were now carefully copied on the 
typewriter on thin linen paper, neatly tabulated with the sub- 
jects considered in marginal references and bound in yearly 
books in fine leather, containing lettered inscriptions on the 
outside . She now perfected a unique and valuable contribu- 
tion to the history of the society in the form of a record of 
current historical data. This consists of a series of scrap 
books into which are incorporated every conference program 
including programs of eastern conventions and councils, with 
which this association is affiliated; all newspaper clippings 
pertaining to the work of M. I. A. and also to the members 
of the General Board when associated with M. I. A. labors 
are here found tabulated and indexed. 

Another most important financial labor of the Y. L. M. 
I. A. was the securing of means to erect a building of their 



own, to be associated with the Relief Society and the Pri- 
mary Association. A succinct recital of this collection and its 
final distribution, written by Miss Ann M. Cannon, was giv- 
en in the April number of the Journal, 1910. We copy the 
article, in part, as it covers the history of the matter well 
and briefly: 

In October, 1900, when President Lorenzo Snow prom- 
ised the three women's organizations of the Church a build- 
ing- site opposite the east gate of the Salt Lake Temple, none 
were sanguine enough to even dream of such an edifice as 
the one which now graces the spot. President Snow stipu- 
lated that it must be a building worthy of the location, and 
some one added that it must cost at least twenty thousand 


170 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

dollars . The women who were so bold as to think of raising that 
sum were looked at in open-eyed astonishment. Neverthe- 
less, they went to work to draw plans and collect funds. 
The committee appointed by President Elmina S. Taylor of 
the Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement Association con- 
sisted of Counselor Maria Young Dougall, Adella W. Eard- 
ley and Minnie J. Snow. 

It was decided to call upon each local organization to 
contribute to the fund. In addition, a committee, consisting 
of Sisters Elizabeth C. McCune, Minnie J. Snow, Augusta 
W. Grant, and Agnes S. Campbell, was appointed to make a 
canvass of the well-to-do women of Salt Lake City and vi- 
cinity, asking for their assistance to erect this "Woman's 
Building." The feeling with which they undertook the task 
can be understood from Sister McCune' s answer, when put 
on the committee: 

"Well, I'll go. But I'd rather carry mortar in a hod 
to build it." 

Through the efforts of this committee, about two thou- 
sand dollars was collected . The contributions from the asso- 
ciations aggregated a little over five thousand. 

After President Snow's death, on October 10th, 1901, 
came a period of inactivity in regard to the building, though 
his successor still held the promise in mind. The delay was 
due to the fact that the Church was then engaged in the erec- 
tion of the Deseret News Building, and Deseret News Annex, 
which was an enormous undertaking in view of the then ex- 
isting" financial condition of the Church. As soon as possible 
the Presidency turned their attention toward the erection of 
this building. Early in 1907, the General Boards of Relief 
Society, Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement Association 
and Primary Association were consulted by the First Presi- 
dency, Presidents Joseph F. Smith, John R. Winder an*d 
Anthon H. Lund, in regard to erecting a building which 
should be a home for the Presiding Bishopric and for other 
Church officers as well. The advantage of this plan can 
readily be seen when one stops to think of the cost of main- 
taining such a place - heating, lighting, janitor and elevator 
service. The sisters consented and plans for the present 


beaxitiful building were soon under way. It has proved very 
advantageous to be thus located. 

The entire building- is simple, yet elegant. It is as near 
fire-proof as a building of the kind can be made. The walls 
are not decorated, as yet, except for the wainscoting in 
light yellow tile effect. The wood- work is a dull golden-oak, 
and the floors are of maple, highly polished. The lower floor 
or basement consists of a series of vaults, entirely fire-proof, 
each organization located in the building having one or more 
according to its needs. The first or main floor has its en- 
trance from Main street (No. 40 North). This is occupied 
by the Presiding Bishopric and Quorum of the Twelve. To 
the second, third, and fourth floors, access is gained from 
Temple avenue. The second is occupied the north side by 
the General Board of Relief Society; the south by the First 
Council of Seventy, and Young Men's Mutual Improvement 
Association; the third the north side, by the General Board 
of Primary Association; the south, by the Young Ladies' 
Mutual Improvement Association, and the Superintendencies 
of Religion Classes and Church Schools. The fourth floor 
consists of one large assembly or banquet room, and two 
small rooms, where refreshments may be served. 

Never before have the general offices been sufficiently 
large for conveniently attending to the work. Heretofore 
the desk of the general secretary has been in the room where 
all Board and committee meetings were held. They being 
frequent, it was often necessary for her to suspend work or 
seek other quarters. Never before in the twenty years of 
the Journal 's existence has the editor had a room of her own, 
where she could be free from interruption. For all of these 
conveniences the general officers are very thankful, and they 
appreciate highly the pleasure expressed by their girl mem- 
bers on finding the head offices so commodious and comfort- 
able. As President Tingey says: ''They belong to the girls. 
We are here today but someone else may be here tomorrow." 

The reception room belongs conjointly to the Primary and 
Young Ladies. It is adjoined on the north by the Primary and 
on the south by the Young Ladies' General Board rooms, the 
three being connected by large doors, which may be thrown 
open to make one apartment. In our own room will be noticed 


a life-size portrait of President Elmina S. Taylor. This is the 
work of Artist Lee Greene Richards, and is considered one 
of his best works. It is presented by the Young Woman? 's 
fournal, for which President Taylor expended so much of her 
slender supply of strength, and to which she gave so much 
of loving thought as well as encouragement to its struggling 

The pictures of the Journal departments are shown else- 
where . 

Very recently, Miss Cannon has felt obliged to ask for 
a release as general secretary. The Board were exceed- 
ingly loath to lose her services, but were finally obliged to ac- 
cede to her request. She was retained as an aid, however, 
Sister Tingey and her associates feeling it impossible to lose 
altogether the wise services of this young lady. Miss Joan 
M. Campbell, who has acted in an assisting capacity from 
time to time, was chosen in April, 1910, to fill the vacant 
place. She has proven herself in the past and today a care- 
ful, painstaking and faithful worker; therefore we may be- 
lieve the good work so thoroughly and judiciously established 
by Miss Cannon will be carried forward with like success in 
the coming years. 

The general summary of the finances of this prosperous 
organization permits the remark that much wisdom and a su- 
preme degree of Divine Providence have enabled the general 
officers of the Young Ladies' Association to meet every re- 
quirement made of them. During the first years the expen- 
ses were small and met by private individuals; then a yearly 
due of one dollar was required of the stakes, and was after- 
wards raised to two; this soon proved inadequate, and a call 
was made for a considerable donation from each of the stakes 
to make a permanent fund. This was done, and put out at 
interest. Even this plan could not long be feasible, for the 
expenses of traveling, printing roll books, blanks, and circu- 

174 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

lars, as well as the rent of an office, postage and stationery, 
demanded yearly and g rowing- expenditure; accordingly, the 
Dime fund was established. The treasurer's account has 
been strictly kept, all moneys spent have been duly author- 
ized, reports have been rendered yearly, and the whole busi- 
ness is in splendid condition. The financial status of the 
stakes can easily be said to be a repetition of the history of 
the General Board in such matters, and while each stake has 
different financial conditions and problems, yet the wise ex- 
ample and influence of Presidents Elmina S. Taylor and 
Martha H, Tingey have permeated to every remote corner of 
Mutual Improvement work and have made the Young Ladies' 
Associations a credit and an honor to themselves and to the 
womanhood of the world. 



Born in the true and everlasting covenant, she is a type 
of the broad womanhood which the Gospel has made. The 
many-sided interests afforded a girl reared in a large Mor- 
mon tamily gave her the best chance to develop nobly. Love 
for a delicate mother, a father, and many brothers and sis- 
ters called forth in her youth the tender helpfulness to loved 
ones which is now the dominant note of her character. A 
ready power to feel the heart-ache of another and ease its 
pain has added to her own cares the burdens of many others, 
as well. as their pleasures. 

Sister Ann M. Cannon, daughter of Angus M. Cannon 
and Sarah Maria Mousley Cannon, was born in the Fifteenth 
ward, Salt Lake City, and began school work when but 
a child of four years. At thirteen, her brother, George 
M., commenced to give her a business training. It was ex- 
ceedingly thorough and has been invaluable to her. She 
worked in his office Saturdays and holidays during her school 



period, which ended at the early age of seventeen. Before 
this time she had attended the University of Utah four years, 
completing- the normal course at sixteen, and taking addi- 
tional studies in English, Latin, German, history, science 
and mathematics. 

Sister Cannon has long been a worker in the Y. L. M. I. 
A. The first office she held was that of treasurer in a local 
association in the Fourteenth ward, Salt Lake City. Then 
she was made second counselor, and afterwards first counselor 
to President Agnes S. Campbell. She became the assistant 
secretary of the General Board Y. L. M. I. A. in April, 1891, 
and secretary in October of the same year, and from April 
1892 to 1902, she performed the additional duties of the office 
of general treasurer. Her labors as general secretary con- 
tinued till April 1, 1910, when, at her own request, as she 
wished to devote herself to the care of her parents in their 
declining years, she was released. At different times she has 
acted on various committees: Guide, Conference, Convention, 
and is at present on the History publishing committee. She 
has met the very exacting demands of these responsible po- 
sitions with rare skill and intelligence. Other public positions 
she has held with honor. She acted on the board of direct- 
ors of the Mutual Improvement Association League until it 
was placed under the direction of the Salt Lake stake, and 
is now a member of the board of control of the Deseret Gym- 
nasium. She was deputy county recorder of Salt Lake coun- 
ty for five and a half years, resigning that position in July, 
1902, to become chairman of the literary committee (editor) 
of the Young Woman s journal. Her editorial work gives 
proof of a logical mind endowed with superior power of 
analysis. The literary style developed in this connection is 
one of sweetness and simplicity. Twice she has been a dele- 
gate to the triennial sessions of the National Council oi; Wom- 
en at Washington, D. C. She will long be remembered in 
the Council for her work on the resolution committee when a 
question of vital importance to our people was won in the face 
of overwhelming opposition . 

Travel, literary work and a successful public life have 
not weaned Miss Cannon from simple home pleasures. She 
showers her love on children, particularly on the dear little 
ones near of kin who are often with her. Her home is made 

176 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

beautiful by many favorite flowers and a choice collection 
of books and pictures. 

Years of executive work and heavy responsibility have 
developed her naturally clear intellect and sound judgment to 
a degree rarely found in one of her years. Though admired 
for her qualities of mind, it is her self-control, her sweet 
sympathy and womanliness which win the love and devotion 
of numerous friends. There is a quiet humor about her, too, 
which is to the nature of a winsome woman what the last 
touch is to the picture of a great artist. 



Early programs in the wards; in the various stakes. A Guide out- 
lining studies for all associations issued 1893. Second Year's 
Guide. The associations graded. Theological studies; Ethical; 
Literary. Classes for study of the Guide. 

WITH the solid groundwork of faith and confidence un- 
der their feet, with all the possibilities of growth and 
progress, the officers and members of the Y. L. M. I. A. 
looked out upon the world twenty years ago with glowing 
eyes of hope and coming triumph. The history of what was 
done by the general officers for all the associations is true in 
many particulars of the officers of every stake board, and 
measurably true of the officers of every association. One 
might almost substitute other names and vary the circum- 
stances, and there would be an account of each stake board's 
history in this narrative of the general work. The world 
looks upon our organization with wondering eyes; the hasty 
observer ascribes our solidarity to fear, ignorance, or co- 
ercion. The earnest student detects two important princi- 
ples at the root of our social and religious life. The first is 
the foundation principle of true democracy; that of perfect 
liberty and equality in membership and office-holding. The 
maid-servant is as likely to achieve promotion in the Y. L. 
M. I. A. as is the mistress. It may be argued that such a 
condition is peculiar only to primitive surroundings and 
society, and will be swept away with the march of the higher 
civilization. The force of education and refinement, even 
though accompanied as it so often is with wealth and civil 
corruption, has had almost as much leavening power in Utah 
as in any other part of the United States; but there is one 
other principle of unity and power which even the skeptics 


178 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

must admit has an unequaled force that of deep religious 
faith. The scoffer may sneer, or the bigot may anathema- 
tize, but the uplifting- and unifying influence of sincere re- 
ligious conviction is the most potent factor in human life . 

It is these two principles, social equality and a strong 
religious sense which have imparted and will continue to im- 
part a vital strength to the "club" or organized movement 
among the Mormon women. Clubs or societies of women or 
men founded on one or the other of these principles, or upon 
the more ephemeral principles of reform or social amusement 
and culture, are too weak to long stand alone. They must 
have the principle of living growth within themselves, or 
time and changing circumstances will disintegrate and finally 
disrupt them. Duty is a hard master, an unwelcome one, 
but it is the judge that sits in the final court of appeals. One 
can do as one likes in social or civil life; but if religion says 
duty leads along a certain path, the conscientious soul will 
keep that path, no matter how dreary the prospect, nor 
how often one's companions may drop into the by-paths of 

This is the reason why there has been a constant stream 
of progress in every one of the women's organizations in the 
Church. The three-fold nature of woman, as of all human 
kind, has been recognized. What at first thought might ap- 
pear to the Mormon women in the nature of a duty soon 
comes to be recognized as a pleasure; and the child, the girl 
and the woman find fruits meet for their plucking on every 
tree within the garden of truth. 

Let us now take up the history and development of the 
detailed and programed work as it was introduced. 

The associations, both local and stake, were in good 
working order in 1891. There were local associations in 
nearly every ward in the Church. A few of these were 
joined with the young men in conjoint associations; usually 


for the benefit of the young: men, as bishops and members 
were willing to concede. It was difficult at times to hold the 
young men together where the people were in scattered 
localities. The strength of numbers, as well as the attrac- 
tion afforded by the presence of the girls, induced the pre- 
siding ward authorities to advise that the M. I. A. meetings 
be held conjointly, although the young women would rather 
have met alone. Not because of any antagonism felt for 
brothers or friends, but because of the difficulty officers met 
in drawing girls to the front to stand before the public eye 
when there were young men to do the work. This whole 
matter was a subject of serious concern to Sister Taylor. 
She felt deeply the force of the original instruction given by 
President Young; that the girls must be left to themselves, 
most of the time, for only when alone and unhampered by 
sex questions could either sex do its best work. This especi- 
ally is true of girls, as all women know. This feeling may 
at times have made Sister Taylor seem somewhat narrow, 
but so wise was she in handling this delicate matter that none 
were antagonized or long offended. 

For the first twenty years each association was more or 
less a law unto itself. The meeting was held at any hour in 
the afternoon or early evening that best suited the local con- 
venience. The associations in the large towns usually met 
in the evening, to accommodate the girls going to school; or 
in the afternoon in the summer and in the evening in the 
winter. In the country they held sessions almost as a rule in 
the afternoon, unless they joined with the young men. Any 
day in the week was chosen except the Sabbath. The con- 
joint meetings were held in nearly every ward once a month 
but rarely then on the evening of the Sabbath. 

The programs were still entirely individual affairs. In 
some wards, good program committees were chosen from 
year to year, and in nearly every ward there were excellent 

180 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. 1. A. 

manuscript papers prepared for the open monthly meeting. 
Readings, recitations and music, both instrumental and vocal, 
were a necessary part of the meeting's program. Lectures 
were not infrequent, but they were unrelated and often too 
general in scope and treatment to be of direct service. In 
some stakes an effort was made to unify the work done in the 
wards of the stake ; for this purpose, bulletins were printed 
in which instructions were issued to the local associations. 

It is right to mention in this connection the earnest 
labors of the Salt Lake stake board, and their ward officers. 
It would be natural that the central stake should be a pattern 
in all matters, and it really did lead the rest in energy and 
the sweet spirit of the Gospel. The Salt Lake stake board 
were fortunate in having at their head a woman who was so 
filled with the spirit of Mary of Bethany, that beloved friend 
of our Master, that her influence radiated into every corner 
of her district. Among the other stakes which were pre- 
eminent for good and original work should be mentioned 
Cache stake which was the first to outline a definite plan of 
work for its .associations. It may also be stated that no 
stake surpassed Boxelder in the variety and scope of the 
labors performed; work was systematized, and plans were 
made and carried out with a swinging success that made Box- 
elder a model for all other stakes to follow. Here was pub- 
lished the first circular of instructions in the interest of the 
M. I. A. work. The Bear Lake stake was and is a strong 
financial organization. It is also remarkable for the union 
which exists among the stake officers. The Sanpete stake 
was likewise full of devoted zeal and interesting good works. 
The sweet spirit and earnest labors of Christine Willardson 
will ever be remembered in that stake. Indeed, each stake 
had some special feature to recommend it; and through them 
all ran the thread of spiritual unity and love which emanated 
from the Divine mother spirit operating through the grea 


woman at the head of them all. Some details of the work 
done by the stakes will appear in our final chapters. 

Music has always been a prominent feature of the pro- 
grams. Glee clubs were numerous. But up to 1900 no con- 
certed effort was made to unify or systematize the musical 
material in the Young 1 Ladies' Associations. Now there are 
musical directors and organists in most of the stakes and 
wards as well as in the General Board; while the associations 
are rich in rare musical material. Some day this fallow 
waiting field will be entered and great results may be ex- 
pected from such a work. Such an effort was once made by 
Elder Junius F. Wells among the youngf men in the form of 
a musical contest in Salt Lake City. 

In 1892 there was projected a definite plan of work for 
the local associations which deserves special mention. It was 
suggested to the Board by Mrs. Susa Young Gates that a 
Guide should be prepared containing lessons for the use of 
these associations. This was in order to simplify and unify 
the work done. Many and prolonged were the meetings held 
by the Board in discussing this subject. Plans were sub" 
mitted, subjects were presented and discussed, with fasting 
and prayer. At las"t, in June, 1892, at the meeting of the 
Board, it was decided that such a Guide should be presented, 
and the work was put in the hands of Sister Gates, who 
wrote most of the first two years' Guides, under the direc- 
tion of the Board. Three courses of study were presented. The 
great object of the Guide, so we are told in the minutes, was 
to set the young ladies to thinking on definite topics. It did 
not assume to teach them very much about the subject in 
hand, but sought merely to awaken interest, and thus per- 
suade the girls to love study for its own sake. The studies 
in each course were twelve for the year. 

The first Guide was published in 1893 and was an instant 
and unqualified success; two years later a second one fol- 

182 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

lowed, with more difficult lessons. The second one proved, 
indeed, beyond the scope of most of the associations, and ex- 
perience proved the necessity for simple lessons on simple 
subjects. The Guide lessons have always carried forward 
one course in theology as the ground work. History, litera- 
ture, physical culture, domestic science, physiology and 
ethics have up to the present time formed the other branches 
of study . Three subjects were usually presented for the yearly 
course. In all this formal lesson work, the officers of the as- 
sociations have ever been urged not to neglect the more vital 
necessity of assisting the members to obtain for themselves 
a testimony of the Gospel. The unvarying policy of the 
Board is that the monthly testimony meeting should never be 
abolished nor interfered with for any reason whatsoever. 

The FIRST YEAR'S COURSE of study contained four parts. 

THE FIRST PART was as follows : A Roster of the Stake 
and General Officers; Greeting from the General Board; In- 
structions to vStake Officers; Care of Libraries; Books for 
Assistance in Study; Suggestions Regarding the Use of the 

SECOND PART: Theological Department. Lesson 1 Faith 
and Repentance; 2 Baptism and the Holy Ghost; 3 Testi- 
mony of the Truth; 4 Healing of the Sick; 5 Church Or- 
ganization; 6 Divine Authority in the Church; 7 The 
Atonement; 8 Second Coming of Christ Millennium; 9 
The Resurrection; 10 Salvation for the Dead Temple 
Work; 11 Prayer; 12 The Articles of Faith. 

THIRD PART: Historical Department. The History of 
Joseph Smith, the Prophet. 1 The Boyhood of the Prophet; 
2 The Book of Mormon; 3 Organization of the Church; 
4 The Land of Zion; 5 Mobs Z ion's Camp; 6 Kirtland 
The British Mission; 7 Prosecutions and Persecutions; 
8 Mobs and Murders; 9 Nauvoo, the Beautiful; 10 Clouds 
and Sunshine; 11 The Shadow of Death ; 12 TheMartyrdom. 


FOURTH PART: Human Physiology and Hygiene. 1 
The Study of the Human Body; 2 The Bony System; 3 
Muscles and Muscular Exercises; 4 The Skin; 5 Append- 
ages to the Skin Hair, Nails and Teeth; 6 Digestion; 7 
Food; 8 Blood and Circulation; 9 Respiration; 10 Venti- 
lation; 11 The Nervous System and the Special Senses; 12 
The Stimulant Appetite. 

THE SECOND YEAR'S GUIDE was published in pamphlet 
form in May, 1896, and contained the same general instruc- 
tion as did the first Guide. The Theological lessons were 
twelve in number and considered the genuineness of the 
New Testament from internal and external evidences, with 
an inquiry into the topography of the country and the ethnol- 
ogy of the Jews and their neighbors at the time of the Savior's 
advent, with other external features of such a study, pre- 
paratory to the historical sacred narratives which were to fol- 
low in due course. The studies in the Second Part of the 
Guide carried on the historical story of the settlement of 
Utah, reaching up to the death of President Brigham Young, 
with Whitney's History of Utah as the basis of study. 
Part Third of the Guide was devoted to a series of Home 
lessons. These were neither strictly ethical nor did they 
follow domestic science lines although both of these fields 
were entered as may be seen by the following titles: System 
in the Home; Cleanliness; Clothing the Family; Flowers in 
the Home; Amusements in the Home; Social Duties; Sick- 
ness in the Home; Nursing; Food for Invalids; Emergen- 
cies. There was a Part Four in the Guide which contained 
twelve excellent lessons in Physical Exercises, prepared and 
specially illustrated by Prof. Maud May Babcock, who had 
at that time come to the West to take charge of physical edu- 
cation in the State University. 

In 1903, in addition to the regular Guide, a Guide was 
issued for junior members with instructions to grade the 

184 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

associations, thus promoting order and more rapid progress. 
The junior work was in part founded on previous lessons 
made very simple for young girls. Both religious and ethi- 
cal subjects were considered. The grading of the Mutuals 
has since become general, though as a rule the same subjects 
are studied in each department. 

The Book of Mormon was studied for two years, followed 
by the Doctrine and Covenants for the same length of time; 
in turn followed, in 1904, by the Life of Christ, two years 
being devoted to the study of His history and two to His 
teachings, followed again by one year on the Acts of the 

The original plan for the development of the Theological 
work as conceived years ago was to begin the study with the 
history of God's dealings with His children as recorded in 
the Old Testament, next in the Book of Mormon, and then in 
the New Testament; following this would come the consider- 
ation of the Apostasy from the primitive Church, and then 
the Restoration of the Gospel. This has been practically 
followed this year, 1909, completing the study of the Apostasy, 
while for the year 1910 the Guide lessons will be devoted to 
the Restoration of the Gospel. Thus the study of theology 
follows a natural historical course, and the mind is aided to 
grasp its significance by the threads of history along which 
it is strung. The ancient records deal with the preparation 
for the advent of the Savior, the modern ones have to do with 
His message to the boy Prophet of the nineteenth century. 

The studies in Ethics covered such subjects as pertain 
to the social and domestic life of girls, for instance, the fol- 
lowing: Rights of Family Members; Honesty in Small 
Things; Truth- telling; Self-control; Loving and Serving; 
Visitors in the Home; Social Observances; Street Deport- 
ment; Conduct in Places of Worship; Selfishness; Happi- 
ness; Modesty; Wickedness. 


It must be remembered that the membership changes 
often, the junior ranks being- filled by girls of fourteen who 
come from the Primary Association each year. A repetition 
of subjects on foundation principles is therefore necessary 
about every four years. 

The course in Literature began in the autumn of 1903. 
It commenced with literature 3000 years B. C., and has con- 
tinued to the present day, covering the most important of the 
world's classics. While dealing with ancient literature the 
aim was to publish sufficient information in the Journal so 
that it would not be necessary for the girls to purchase all 
the books considered. The beginning" was somewhat diffi- 
cult on account of the peculiar names and their unfamiliarity; 
but before long the girls were thoroughly interested and have 
so continued. The influence this course has had upon the 
reading of the members is wonderful, the call for high class 
literature being so great that many book dealers have been 
led to comment upon it. 

Looking backward twenty years to the beginning of our 
Guide work, it. is appalling in the light of more modern peda- 
gogical studies to see the number and prodigious variety of 
subjects attacked by these primary Guides. Such however 
is the history of education and progress everywhere and 
every time. To begin with the study of the earth and nar- 
row down to a prolonged consideration of one flower growing 
upon its broad face is the method pursued in all nations and 
at all times. What brain-racking work those first Guides 
must have proved for author, teacher and girl student! It is 
said we do better now-a-days. The first two Guides were 
prepared as separate pamphlets, and sold for ten cents each. 
When in 1897 it was decided to publish the Guide lessons in 
the Journal, it proved so successful and desirable that the 
plan has ever since been followed. 

The systematic work provided foi the local associations 

186 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

by the Guide was heartily appreciated by those most con- 
cerned. To be sure, everybody was set to work, the officers 
most of all. While the new method took some of the heavy re- 
sponsibility off the over- worked shoulders of the officers, it 
made great demands of them in another direction. These 
girls were made of the wrong kind of stuff, however, to quail 
or give up at the sight of obstacles. With a determined 
grasp, the lessons in history, in theology and in physiology 
were attacked with vigor. What had heretofore existed in 
the minds of most of our girls as a few unrelated facts in 
history, and as a vague understanding of the principles of 
the Gospel of Jesus Christ, now began to assume definite 
proportions, and to fall into proper relation and harmony. 
When the girls undertook to teach the lessons in the Guide 
to each other, whether in the form of lecturing, giving the 
lessons, or simply in imparting bits of information in the 
shape of answers to questions, their work became as play, 
and they were at once aroused and interested. What the 
literary club did for the woman of the world, was accom- 
plished through the M. I. A. for the simple-hearted Mormon 

There was one consequence of this new movement, in 
some instances to be deplored: those sisters, standing at the 
head of local or stake organizations, whose lives had been 
spent mostly in a hand-to-hand struggle with pioneer con- 
ditions, and whose education was circumscribed principally 
by the three R's, felt a lack of qualification for this sudden 
educational change. In some instances, the disposition and 
character of the presiding officer was sufficiently pliable to 
adapt itself to these new conditions, or the mind was of that 
keen caliber that grasped eagerly the opportunity for self- 
education, and the student-officer managed thus to keep just 
one step in advance of her student-members. But in every 
instance, the General Board was loath to see the older girls 


and young- women who were so full of spiritual qualifications 
step aside because of lack of the higher education. However, 
we may congratulate ourselves that the resignations were not 
frequent, and in any case the good work went steadily on- 

With a commendable desire to give practical assistance 
to the women concerned, the principal of the Brigham Young 
University in Provo, Benjamin duff, offered, in 1893, to es- 
tablish in that school a course in the study of the Guide. 
Other studies were recommended and provided in this brief 
six weeks' winter course, and it was suggested that the Gen- 
eral Board should use their influence in arranging- for the 
presence of at least one representative from every ward in 
the Church. This generous offer was gladly accepted, as it 
involved no expense to the general society and exacted but a 
very moderate fee from the intended beneficiaries. A great 
many young- women took advantage of the opportunity, and 
even those who had received no hig-her education found their 
work so simplified for them by the devoted teachers of this 
first and best of all Church schools, that they soon became 
qualified to return to their homes, prepared to begin life from 
a new starting- point. 

The work begun in this school spread rapidly, and, in a 
short time, the three principal Church schools, the Brigham 
Young Academy at Provo. the Brigham Young: College at 
Logan, and the Latter-day Saints University in Salt Lake 
City, had excellent brief courses in the Young Women's 
Guide and the Young Men's Manual. Moreover, the same 
labor was projected and carried forward in a private way in 
Salt Lake City. Mrs. Minnie J. Sn:>w and Mrs. May Booth 
Talmage were the directors and Mrs. Emma Goddard was 
secretary of a M. I. model Guide class. There were also vari- 
ous classes formed in different stakes, and for a number of 
years this work was thus promoted. Finally, the workers 

188 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

and the work became adjusted to each other, and the plan 
was adopted of using- part of the time of the monthly stake 
board meetings, when the officers all came together, in pre- 
paratory work in the Guide lessons. This system is in oper- 
ation today, in most of the stakes. The lesson is put into 
the hands of a class leader, and, either by general assignment 
or by individual preparation, the lesson is given to the as- 
sembled officers. By keeping ahead of the local ward work 
one month, each officer is able to assist in the lesson when it 
is given in her own ward, and all the officers are thus prop- 
erly prepared, not leaving the work to rest wholly upon the 
class leader, with the assistance, perhaps, of the president of 
the ward association. It will be understood that this increase 
in work demanded more systematic method in the carrying 
on of the Mutual Improvement labor in stake and ward 
boards. Heretofore, the stake boards had met merely to 
listen to the giving of reports and to give encouragement to 
officers with some general consideration of conditions. 

The monthly stake board meeting became a fixed insti- 
tution with the introduction of class work, and nothing ex- 
cept a death or marriage in the family kept the girl officer 
away from her monthly duties. It might be that she lived 
twenty miles from the town where the meeting was held, but 
twenty blocks or twenty miles, it made little difference. There 
was the team in the barn, the carriage or buggy in the same 
place; while the other officers in her town, or along the route, 
would be glad to fill up the capacious seats; and she herself 
knew how to throw a harness on to a willing horse. So away 
she went for the board meeting to get her particular taste of 
the culture of the ages. Is it any wonder that one finds so 
many capable, self-reliant girls in our Church? 

It is possible to picture to the mind through the headings 
of the various studies given during that decade of rapid 
growth, something of the tremendous force for good exercised 


by the M. I. Associations. When one considers the value 
and importance of the study of true religion, of ethics, music, 
and the best in literature, treated simply and vividly, taught 
by loving- and eager hearts, to other loving and receptive 
hearts, the picture is most inspiring. Forty thousand girls in 
these western states and territories, studying about Loving 
and Serving, Gratitude, Reverence, with the studious yet in- 
timate lessons on the life and character of the Savior, to- 
gether with brief but fascinating glimpses at the literary 
giants of old and modern times, Shakespeare, Goethe, 
Dante, Milton, Longfellow, Emerson, Carlyle these sub- 
jects all are goodly company for a girl's mind and dreams. 
No one may measure, in words at least, the value of such 
labors. It is only when the mind is lighted by a flash of in- 
spiration that the immensity of the vision is comprehended; 
the girls, the future mothers, weaving week by week strands 
of ethical uprightness with the beauties of literature or some 
practical knowledge into a web of pure religion the garment 
of the soul to be folded about their lives for here and here- 



The parents of Mrs. Minnie Jensen Snow were among 
the first converts to the Mormon faith in the beautiful land 
of Denmark. They were well acquainted with Apostle Eras- 
tus Snow, and their spacious home was ever open for the new 
missionaries of a strange religion. They were well-to-do 
people, and of strong personalities, both of them, with that 
indomitable will and that firm integrity which insure results 
after conviction. So, when in 1853 they could not dispose of 
their property on leaving for Utah, they both simply stepped 
out of the house and closed the doors forever behind them. 

190 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

Of such mold was their daughter Minnie. There was 
about Sister Snow an exquisite refinement of speech and 
manner that convinced those who knew her that she had gen- 
erations of cultured ancestors behind her. She was as firm 
as the everlasting- hills, but as gentle and serene in manner 
as are the velvet-clad valleys between those hills. She re- 


minded one of the old simile: ''the iron hand in the velvet 
glove." She was born on the 10th of October, 1854, in Brig- 
ham City, five days after the arrival of her parents from 
their home in the old country. She was a student from child- 
hood. She loved books, music, languages, and. was a born 


leader among" her sex. She might lack some of the tender 
qualities of perfect sympathy, if she had a certain point to 
gain but she secured her point by skilful maneuvering, 
never by tactless noise or loud assertiveness. She was the 
slow-moving river that gently, but firmly, makes its channel 
through all movable soils; but when it encounters a boulder, 
runs peacefully around it, with scarcely a ripple of protest, 
and comes out on the other side, still relentless and powerful 
in its onward progress. 

Sister Minnie was early at work among her fellows. 
When only fourteen years of age she came to Salt Lake City, 
and studied music while living under the roof of President 
Daniel H. Wells. Here, too, she took up some work in Eng- 
lish and history. In 1875, on the organization of the Re- 
trenchment Society in Brigham City, she was chosen to act 
as president of the ward association. She filled her office 
with such signal success that when the stake was organized 
in its entirety on the 31st of July, 1879, and the Retrench- 
ment Society was merged into the Y. L. M. I. A., she was 
chosen to act as the president of the stake in that association. 
This position was retained till September, 1894, nearly twen- 
ty years, or until after her removal to Salt Lake City. It 
must be said that the Boxelder stake Y. L. M. I. A. was 
the peer of any stake in Zion. It led in many particulars: 
programs, bulletins, regular work, systematic visiting among 
the associations, with rousing conferences these were a 
few of the superior points manifested under the administra- 
tion of Sister Minnie J. Snow. She had also a very keen 
appreciation of the value of spiritual conversion, and of the 
need of feeding the spirit after conversion witfr food suitable 
for its development, as distinguished from that mental stim- 
ulus which comes from the study of normal facts and historic 
data. The spiritual feasts which were enjoyed in her home 
at the Young Ladies' conferences will never fade from the 
memory of those who were privileged to attend them. Nor 
was she behind in the mental preparation of herself or her 
officers for the exactions of their offices. She had the happy 
gift of rousing all with whom she came in contact to do their 
best; and she certainly led them all in that particular. Upon 
her release she was showered with the gifts and blessings of 
her associates. 

192 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

While only a child in years, but seventeen, she was 
united in the celestial order of marriage to one of the noblest 
and greatest men of this generation President Lorenzo 
Snow. She was forty years his junior, but so quick was her 
mental caliber, so acute her adaptation, and so perfect was 
the manhood, so youthful the innocent purity of President 
Snow, that these two became close and sympathetic com- 
panions. Five children were the result of this union, four 
of whom have survived their parents. Mrs. Mabelle Snow 
Cole, a young matron of Logan, Le Roi C. Snow, a member 
of the General Board of the Y. M. M. I. A., and Lorenzo 
Snow, with a charming young daughter, Lucile, make up a 
family of exceptional members. The home life of Sister 
Snow was exemplary in the extreme. She was the soul of 
neatness and order; no unclean thing could dwell long in her 
presence. She had also the gift of so imparting of her best 
self LO her children, when she was with them, that they nev- 
er felt defrauded through her necessarily frequent absences. 

When the Salt Lake Temple was opened, and President 
Lorenzo Snow was called to preside there, Sister Snow came 
to make a home for her husband in Salt Lake City. She had 
been chosen in October, 1892, to act on the General Board of 
the Y. L. M. I. A., and it was there that she proved her fit- 
ness for any position. She measured up well with all her as- 
sociates. She was also made second counselor to Sister Zina D. 
Young in the onerous duties of presiding over women's work in 
the Salt Lake Temple in 1893, and for some years acted as 
organist in that sacred edifice. With it all *he carried on 
with vigor her duties in the General Board, acting upon va- 
rious committees, and always giving satisfaction in her labors. 
She was for a long time chairman of the Guide committee, and 
assisted to prepare a Junior Guide during that time. Three 
times she was sent as delegate to the National Council of 
Women, twice in Washington and once in Toledo. She 
made an excellent impression wherever she went; Mrs. May 
Wright Sewell once compared her to a clear-cut cameo for 
beauty of spirit and clarity of speech. She was a life-patron 
of the Council , and was active on several of the local Coun- 
cil committees, especially that of Peace and Arbitration. 

In 1901 President Lorenzo Snow was suddenly stricken 
with death; and what his loss meant to her in every way 


none may ever measure. She was too proud to show, too 
reserved to tell, all that lay like lead in her bosom. If she 
had failed in any part, it was not due to lack of vision, but 
from anxiety to accomplish what she esteemed would be of 
utmost good to her nearest and dearest; and with that gentle 
pride which could smile when death stood over her, she took 
up the shattered remains of her life. Very soon after, she 
too, looked into the face of the Avenger, and still she smiled 
and wept not. "Try me, O Lord," she had exclaimed in a 
spiritual meeting just before her husband's death ''and see 
if there is any fault within me." Ah, weak humanity, how 
little we realize the force of mere words! At that moment, 
she was hiding her death warrant beneath her heart, yet even 
she was not yet aware. In life she had not been separated 
from her companion, and in death they were soon to be 

No martyr ever fought a more valiant, brave and smil- 
ing warfare than was waged by this meek soldier of Christ 
for seven long years. She was afflicted with a cancerous 
growth in her eye; and she saw her life close slowly round 
her with its winding sheet of relentless doom; but she cast over 
that pallid surface the flowers of her courage and her infinite 
patience, until they who saw her wept at her fortitude and 
wondered as they gazed on her placid features. If there were 
spots of human weakness, strains of human frailty, in the 
complex character of Sister Minnie J. Snow, the slow fires of 
death burned out that stain and left her soul renewed 
and purified as the spirit took its flight. So may she rest! 
She died January 2nd, 1908, surrounded by her adoring fam- 
ily and mourned by all who knew her. 


Alpine, nestling in the encircling arm of the mighty 
Wasatch, is the birthplace of our sister Mrs. May Booth Tal- 
mage. There she was born September 29, 1868. 

Her infancy and youth were spent amid scenes of inspir- 
ing grandeur and ennobling peace devoted to wholesome 
work and helpful play incident to a country life, her environ- 
ment beautified by the towering peaks and granite crags of 
the everlasting hills. The quiet of home retirement and the 




music of mountain solitude were potent factors of her child- 
hood, and their influence has helped to make lovable and 
useful the succeeding period of womanhood. She has had 
the advantage of close association with the leaders of reli- 
gious, educational and social life in Utah. These varied ex- 
periences have prepared her to appreciate the diversity of 

needs among our 
Mutual Improve- 
ment girls. While 
she was yet a 
child, a patriarch 
in the Church 
foretold her work 
as a leader among 
women, though 
at that time her 
quiet girlhood na- 
ture gave small 
promise of fulfill- 
ment. When she 
received her in- 
fant blessing the 
bishop declared 
that she belonged 
to the Church as 
a tithe, she being 
the tenth child of 
the family. She 
has carried out 
this thought in 
spirit for she has 
ever been ear- 
nestly devoted to 
Church work. 

At sixteen Miss 
Booth entered the 

Brigham Young Academy, now the Biigham Young Univer- 
sity. Subsequently she assumed the responsibility of school 
teaching. After a short period she bade adieu to the schoolroom 
to become the honored wife of one of her former professors. 
Her husband, Dr. James E. Talmage, is recognized as one of 



the leading writers and educators of Utah. Seven bright chil- 
dren have brought joy to this united household, though one 
of them returned to the Father in infancy. These children 
are being reared in a home atmosphere which the parents 
have made beautiful by deep, unselfish love, superior learn- 
ing and daily worship of God. 

Mrs. Talmage 's public work has been wide and varied. 
She rendered efficient service on the executive board of the 
Territorial Woman's Suffrage Association in the successful 
effort to secure the boon of equal suffrage. She was also 
vice-president of the first Free Kindergarten Association es- 
tablished in Utah. For five years Mrs. Talmage worked 
with the children as president of a local Primary Association. 
Her talents were given wider scope for development when 
she was chosen by President Elmina S. Taylor, October, 
1892, to act as aid on the General Board of the Y. L. M. I. 
A. She is an efficient worker in many directions, having 
for years been chairman of such important standing com- 
mittees as the Journal committee and the Guide committee. 
Her marked literary, ability was given splendid opportunities 
for exercise while she edited the Young Woman s Journal 
during a period of nineteen months. 

Mrs. Talmage has had practical experience in the na- 
tional affairs of women. In Chicago in 1893 she prepared 
and read a paper at the World's Congress 'of Women, and in 
1906 she was sent to Toledo, Ohio, to attend the Triennial of 
the National Council of Women. 

A leading trait of Mrs. Talmage 's character is an ear- 
nest desire to do all that she can to benefit and bless her 
friends, and to uplift her fellows. A sweet refinement and a 
love for the beautiful in art and nature are characteristics 
ever prominent, and in her every day life she expresses the 
high ideals that belong to one who is earnest and conscien- 


The father of the Campbell girls, Robert L. Campbell, was 
one of Utah's pioneers, in more ways than one. He came 
here in 1847 and endured all the privations and hardships in- 

196 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

cident to the early days; but he brought with him his fine 
clerical training" and acute intellect. Elder Campbell was given 
various positions of trust, especially where scholarship and 
clerical skill were required. He became one of the superin- 
tendents of public instruction, and was in the Historian's office 


for twenty years. While his eldest daughter, Joan, the subject 
of this sketch, was still very young, he took her into that 
office, and initiated her into his own profession. He died 
when Joan was but sixteen years of agfe, and she must then 
needs turn her attention to helping: in the support of the six- 
teen children left behind. She kept her post in the Histori- 


an's office for ten years, earning- a good wage, which went 
to pay home expenses. She labored while in that office un- 
der the direction of President George A. Smith, Apostle Or- 
son Pratt, and Elder John Jaques. From here she went to 
Z. C. M. I. as cashier, and remained in this institution for 
a number of years. 

In 1894, she was called by Sister Taylor to act as re- 
cording secretary and aid in the General Board. The former 
position she held for five years, in which time she never 
missed a meeting of the Board. It was then decided to do 
away with that office, but she still held the position of aid, 
till April, 1910, when she became general secretary. She 
was placed in the position of secretary in the Fourteenth ward 
Relief Society, to hold the office made vacant by the resigna- 
tion of President Elmina S. Taylor, who had kept up those 
local duties for so many years. Sister Campbell- held that 
office and filled it with signal ability until her removal from 
the ward in 1908. She acted as counselor in the Fourteenth 
ward Y. L. M. I. A. for a number of years, and has long la- 
bored in the Sunday Schools and Primary Association as a 

The life of Joan Campbell has been singularly clean and 
pure, while the sweet simplicity of her soul has carried her 
into many homes and many hearts, where a more aggressive 
spirit would be shut out. If one were asked to name the 
most striking trait of her well-balanced character, he would 
at once say, integrity, honor, faithfulness, purity, these 
are the elements which make up that word, integrity. She 
has commanded respect wherever she has been placed. While 
a mere girl, she was made engrossing clerk in the legislature; 
and while holding that position, she was nominated as a 
notary public, the first woman in the Territory to be so hon- 
ored. Her appointment did not receive the governor's sanc- 
tion, as she was under age; but he hastened to explain that 
this was the only bar to her appointment, for she had gained 
his, as well as every legislator's, respect and admiration. 
Joan is a quiet-spoken girl, and her reserved manner might 
not always be understood; but when she rises to speak to the 
girls in the Mutuals, she has such a fund of good counsel and 
sensible advice that she wins her audience to her in no time. 
She travels extensively in the interests of the association. 



Inception of the National and International Councils. The Y. L. M. 
I. A. affiliated. World's Congress of Representative Women. 
Triennial and Executive Sessions. A memorable triennial. In- 
ternational Council Sessions. Distinguished visitors entertained. 

THE movement for a larger life and for a wider develop- 
ment began with the women of the Latter-day Saints 
in 1842, when the Relief Society was organized in Nauvoo. 
Six years later the same spirit began to manifest itself among 
the women of the world. In July, 1848, the first Women's 
Rights convention was held at Seneca Falls, only a few miles 
from where the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 
was organized in 1830. Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Lucretia 
Mott, Lucy Stone and other prominent women led out in this 
gigantic movement. In 1850, the ranks of the reformers 
were re-enforced by the greatest of all great American wom- 
en, Susan B. Anthony. Miss Anthony was a Quaker, and 
at that time a youthful school teacher. She was the most 
single-minded in her unselfish devotion to her ideal of any 
woman who has made history in the United States. 

In the spring of 1883, a party of distinguished English 
and American women, among whom were Miss Anthony and 
Mrs. Elizabeth Cady Stanton, decided among themselves, 
while at a reception given to the American ladies in Liver- 
pool, to call an international council of women, preparatory 
to forming an International Suffrage Association. It was 
later decided to call this council of women in America and 
to hold it on the fortieth anniversary of the first Suffrage 
convention held at Seneca Falls. Accordingly, extensive 
preparations were made for this event, the burden of the 


work being borne by Miss Anthony, Mrs. May Wright Sew- 
all and Miss Rachel Foster. The sessions were to continue 
eight days, beginning with March 25, 1888. Washington 
was chosen as the place of meeting, because the Suffrage 
conventions were held there yearly, and because this city, 
being the center of the law-making forces of the nation, must 
hold within itself some measure of the heart and the center 
of things spiritual, as well as temporal, for our government. 

This convention, the first of the kind ever held in the 
world so far as history records, was worthy of itself and the 
occasion. Women, the brightest and best known, came from 
every civilized nation, and a few from the nations we are 
pleased to call heathen. The programs covered topics on 
education, philanthropy, temperance, industries, profes- 
sions, legal conditions, political conditions, and moral educa- 
tion. To these were added the discussions and decisions of 
the organization of permanent National Councils of Women, 
and an International one to be composed of the various Na- 
tional Councils. This latter idea was born in the brilliant 
mind of Mrs. May Wright Sewall, but it was warmly sup- 
ported by Miss Anthony, and became the active purpose of 
all present. 

The women were greeted by the fore-gathered intellects 
at the seat of government with some respect, some merri- 
ment, and a great deal of social recognition. The social at- 
tention was a farther- reaching help than was, or is ever, re- 
alized. Receptions were tendered the women at two of the 
most palatial and aristocratic of the senatorial mansions, 
while President Cleveland himself, assisted by his charming 
wife, opened the White House to welcome this unusual as- 
semblage of ladies. 

There is a happy significance in the fact that, in com- 
mon with other organized bodies of women in the country, 
the three organizations of women in the Mormon Church 

200 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

were invited to send representatives, and all three accepted 
the invitation. The Relief Society was represented by M/s. 
Emily S. Richards, the Y. L. M. I. A. by Mrs. Luella C. 
Yotmgf, and the Primary by Mrs. Janet Young- Easton. The 
Relief Society and the Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement 
Association joined the National Council of the United States, 
which was organized at this convention. 

The purpose in the National Council is set forth in the 
preamble to its constitution in the following words: 

We, women of the United States, sincerely believing that 
the best good of our homes and nation will be advanced by 
our own greater unity of thought, sympathy and purpose, 
and that an organized movement of women will best conserve 
the highest good of the family and the state, do hereby unite 
ourselves in a confederation of workers, committed to the 
overthrow of all forms of ignorance and injustice, and to the 
application of the Golden Rule to society, custom and law. 

Its ethical breadth and scope are indicated in the follow- 
ing liberal terms: 

This Council is organized in the interest of no one propa- 
ganda, and has no power over the organizations which 
constitute it, beyond that of suggestion and sympathy; there- 
fore, no organization voting to enter this Council shall there- 
by render itself liable to be interfered with in respect to its 
complete organic unity, independence, or methods of work, 
or be committed to any principle or method of any other or- 
ganization or to any act or utterance of the Council itself be- 
yond compliance with the terms of this constitution. 

As to the detail of membership within the Council, the 
following: clause will be explanatory: 

SECTION 1. Any organization of women, the nature of 
whose work is satisfactory to the executive committee, either 
as to its undoubtedly national character or national value, 
may become a member of this Council by its own vote and 
by the triennial payment of one hundred dollars into the 


treasury of the National Council not later than three months 
prior to its triennial meetings. 

The Council decided to hold its great public conventions 
once in three years; yet, since the organization, executive 
sessions with public exercises are held yearly. The trien- 
nials are held in Washington, but the executive sessions are 
held in various parts of the United States. The offices are 
triennial in their nature, and are similar to those of other 
governing bodies. 

At this time also was organized an International Coun- 
cil of Women, to be composed of national councils. Its pur- 
poses and aims were similar to the national councils, and its 
scope was bounded only by the compass of the earth on which 
we live. 

One of the first representatives sent from the Y. L. M. 
LA. was Mrs. Carrie S. Thomas of Salt Lake City, who 
was appointed as delegate to the triennial session of the Na- 
tional Council of Women at Washington, held February, 1891. 
She went paying her own expenses. In her report of her 
visit in February of that year, she expressed herself as be- 
ing confident that the Board made no mistake in sending a 
representative to that convention. She said she was very 
well received, and she was sure of good results to our women 
from being represented there. 

In 1893, the United States of America joined in celebrat- 
ing the discovery of the continent through a gigantic World's 
Fair at Chicago. In connection with this Fair, a series of 
congresses were held, occupying every week of the time from 
the beginning to the close. Most of the topics in these meet- 
ings were of that common human interest which included 
men and women in the ranks of speakers and listeners. Some 
few were exclusively devoted to the interest and elucidation 
of men's topics -if there can be such an anomaly. During 
one week, there was a series of meetings devoted to those 

202 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

matters belonging- alone to women's interests if again there 
is such a thing as an interest belonging solely to either sex. 

However, tinder the auspices of Mr. C. C. Bonny, who 
was president of the Congress Auxiliary, but more particularly 
under the leadership of Mrs. Bertha Honore Palmer, the dis- 
tinguished president of the Board of Lady Managers, an ex- 
ecutive committee of women was formed, consisting of Mrs. 
May Wright Sewall, chairman, and Miss Rachel Foster, 
secretary, to arrange the details and to carry forward the 
work of calling a World's Congress of Women. That it was 
most successfully done was attested by the brilliant results of 
the Congress. 

On May 15th, 1893, there opened the largest and most 
popular of the congresses which extended through the six 
months of the Fair. Twenty-seven countries were repre- 
sented and one hundred and twenty- six organizations sent 
five hundred and twenty-eight delegates. During the week 
eighty-one meetings were held in the different rooms of the 
Art Palace. There were from seven to eighteen meetings in 
simultaneous progress each day, and according to official es- 
timate, the total attendance exceeded one hundred and fifty 
thousand persons. 

The two women's organizations of Utah were invited to 
occupy a day each, in presenting their work; but it was felt 
that one day would be sufficient, to be divided between the 
two societies. The Relief Society occupied the afternoon, 
while the Y. L. M. I. A. was represented in the evening. 
Mrs. Zina D. Young presided at the afternoon service, and 
her sweet spirit of charity and peace pervaded the whole at- 
mosphere. The speakers of the afternoon were Mrs. Jane 
S. Richards, Mrs. M. I. Home, Mrs. R. E. Little, Mrs. E. 
B. Wells, Dr. Mattie Hughes Cannon and Mrs. Electa Bul- 
lock. At the close of the program, Mrs. Elizabeth Lisle Sax- 
on, a well known woman of the South who had visited Utah, 


came to the stand and paid a glowing tribute to our Utah 
women. In the evening, Mrs. Elmina S. Taylor had charge 
of the service and she presided with queenly dignity. The 
program of that historic session was as follows; 


Under the auspices of the Woman's Branch of the World's 
Congress Auxiliary, World's Columbian Exposition. Mrs. 
Potter Palmer, president; Mrs. Charles Henrotin, vice- 
president. Memorial Art Palace, May 15 to 21, inclusive, 


Of the Young Ladies' National Mutual Improvement Asso- 
ciation. Improvement our motto, Perfection our aim. 
Headquarters, Salt Lake City, Utah. Department Hall 
number seven, of the Memorial Art Palace, Michigan 
Avenue, facing Adams street, near the center of Chi- 
cago, Friday, May 19, 1893. Evening session, 7:45 o'clock. 
Officers: Elmina S. Taylor, president; Maria Y. Dougall, 
first vice-president; Martha H. Tingey, second vice-presi- 
dent; Ann M. Cannon, secretary and treasurer; Mae Tay- 
lor, corresponding secretary. 


Music, Voluntary . . Miss Kate Romney 

Congregational Hymn . My Country, 'Tis of Thee 

Invocation . . . Mrs. Adella Eardley 

(Mrs. May Talmage 
Miss Mary Romney 
Mrs. Minnie J. Snow 
Miss May Preston 

Introductory Remarks . Pres. Elmina S. Taylor 

Address, ' 'Literature and Art" . Mrs. May Talmage 

Recitation, "The Ultimatum of Human Life" 

Miss Laura Hyde 
Address, "Legal and Political Status of Utah Women" 

Mrs. Emily S. Richards 

Address, "Motherhood" . Mrs. Martha H. Tingey 

Soprano solo . . Miss Mary Romnev 

204 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

Y. L. M. I. A. Report . Mrs. Maria Y. Dougal 1 

Address, " Our Girls" . . Mrs. Minnie J. Snow 

Address, " Education of Women" Miss Julia Farnsworth 


Voluntary . . . Miss Kate Romney 

Mrs. Isabella Beecher Hooker came to this session, and 
gave a ringing- talk of encouragement to these Western 
women . 

From the first the Utah women have enjoyed an excel- 
lent reputation in the Council for their thorough business 
methods. The Relief Society and the Young Ladies' Mutual 
Improvement Associations have not only promptly paid their 
dues, and other solicited contributions, but they have also 
sent to the various sessions each year two or more represent- 
atives. Certainly this has not been done with idle or sinis- 
ter motives. An honest desire to meet and dispel the preju- 
dices of the women of the world has been one of the motives 
of the Mormon women. There has been no effort made to 
proselyte in the Council for that is contrary to the Council's 
idea; but a frank opportunity to know what manner of women 
the Mormon women are has been offered during these con- 

There have been some splendid historical executive 
meetings held since the World's Fair in Chicago, at Atlanta 
at Minneapolis, at Omaha, at Indianapolis, at New Orleans 
at Toledo, and at Portland, with of course, the regular Tri- 
ennials held in Washington. 

One of the most interesting Council sessions was that 
held in Washington, in 1899. This Triennial was attended 
by Mrs. Martha Home Tingey and Mrs. Minnie J. Snow as 
the representatives of the Y. L. M. I. A., Mrs. E. B. Wells 
and Mrs. ZinaY. Card represented the Relief Society; while 
Mrs. Susa Young Gates went as an officer of the Council 
itself, being acting press chairman of the National Council. 


Mrs. Lucy B. Young was there as a patron of the Council; 
and Miss Ann M . Cannon was a member of the committee on 
resolutions. There were with the party Mrs. Lulu Greene 
Richards and Miss Mabelle Snow, who accompanied her 
mother, and a young Hawaiian girl, Hanna Kaaepa, who 
went to speak in the Council at the invitation of Mrs. May 
Wright Sewall. This young native was entertained by the 
Hawaiian queen, Lilioukalani, who was living in Washing- 
ton at the time, and who gave a dinner to Miss Anthony, 
Mrs. Sewall, Mrs. E. B. Wells, Mrs. Lucy B. Young and 
Mrs. Susa Young Gates. Miss Hanna Kaaepa made a good 
impression, speaking in native and wearing with dignity the 
modified costume of her people, decked with leis and shells. 

The fiercest blizzard almost of the centurv struck Wash- 
ington during the week of the Council, February llth to 
20th. Its equal has rarely been seen, even- in the West. 
During this season also occurred one of the hardest fought 
mental battles ever experienced in Council history. The 
struggle was occasioned by the introduction of a resolution 
aimed directly at the unseating of Brigham H. Roberts, who 
was then seeking his place in Congress The Mormon wom- 
en present were, most of them, Republican in politics, and 
all of them were strong suffragists. For these reasons they 
were political opponents of Mr. Roberts; but he had been 
legally elected to the position and they felt that a resolution 
striking personally at a man because he held to a form of 
marriage understood by him as a religious sacrament, was 
in the nature of a public insult offered the people of Utah. 
Accordingly, they one and all opposed the resolution. 

The resolution committee struggled with the question 
for one week, and finally, when it came before the Council 
proper, the majority report read as follows: 

Whereas, The National Council of Women of the United 
States stands for the highest ideals of domestic and civic 

206 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

virtue, as well as for the observance of law in all its depart- 
ments, both state and national; therefore, 

Resolved, That no person should be allowed to hold a 
place in any law-making- body of the nation who is not a law- 
abiding 1 citizen. 

The minority report read: 

Whereas, The passage of the Edmunds bill (so-called) 
established the law of monogamic marriage as binding 1 upon 
all citizens of the United States; therefore, 

Resolved, That no person shall be allowed to hold a place 
in a law-making body of the nation who is not in this, and in 
all other matters, a law-abiding- citizen. 

This was felt to be a crucial moment in the history of 
the Council itself; for, if it began a work of discrimination 
and arbitration on political as well as religious beliefs, the 
future was sure to see its overthrow. And so the battle was 
fierce, and the whole Council took sides vigorously. 

It would be impossible in the limits of this book to give 
the details of that interesting last day. But the Utah women 
pleaded their cause with power and humility. Miss Anthony, 
as always, stood squarely on her great platform, "equal 
rights to all, special privileges to none." Mrs. Judith Ellen 
Foster, Miss Sadie American, Rev. Anna Garlin Spencer, 
Mrs. Ida M. Weaver of Idaho, and Mrs. Mary Lowe Dickin- 
son all spoke eloquently for the majority report. And at 
last, when the vote was taken, there were thirty-one in favor 
of the majority report, and sixteen in favor of the minority 
report. This was accepted by the Utah women as a direct 
interposition of Providence in defense of truth and principle. 
It was not that Mr. Roberts was attacked as a Mormon nor 
even as a polygamist; but that he was singled out of all the 
men chosen to sit in the halls of Congress, as the one offender 
against moral law. One of the Utah women wanted to amend 
the resolution, by making it impossible for any man who 


offends against the seventh commandment to hold a seat in 
Congress. But Miss Anthony answered with spirit and vigor 
that such a law enforced would result so disastrously for Con- 
gress that we ohould be left practically without a law-making 
body. And thus closed that memorable incident. 

There have been three International Councils held since 
1888; one in London in 1899, during the summer, and one in 
Berlin in 1904, also in the summer, and one in Toronto, 
Canada, in July, 1909. Although the Young Ladies' Associ- 
ations could not be officially represented at these gatherings, 
yet there were members of the Utah associations who 
received distinguished privileges at these great con- 
gresses. At London Mrs. E. B. Wells, who was then the 
recording secretary of the National Council of the United 
States, attended and spoke at one of the meetings. Mrs. 
Susa Young Gates was a member of the press committee of 
the National Council of the United States, and she was also 
there as a speaker of the Congress; and Mrs. Elizabeth 
Clariclge McCune, who was already a patron of the National 
Council, became a patron of the International and attended 
all the business sessions in her official capacity. There were 
in all thirteen women from Utah at this great and brilliant 
Congress and Quinquennial, and they were among those who 
received the hospitality of the Duchess of Sutherland, the Lord 
Mayor of London, and of her gracious majesty, Queen Vic- 
toria, who entertained the foreign delegates at Windsor Cas- 
tle at a delightful tea-party. 

All of these events have marked special features in the his- 
tory and advancement of the Mutual Improvement work. For 
they have taken our message of good will out to the world, and 
have brought back the best of what the world has to give to us. 

Utah women have ever been eager workers in the suf- 
frage movement, both in local and in national capacity. 
They have likewise taken an interested part in the Peace 

208 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

propaganda, and are now working- with the national forces 
in this direction. 

The Utah women have had the pleasure of entertaining 
some of the great women of the world in Salt Lake City. Mrs. 
Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Miss Susan B. Anthony, Mrs. May 
Wright Sewall, Dr. Anna Howard Shaw, Mrs. Charlotte Per- 
kins Oilman, Mme. L.V. F. Mountford have all been here; as 
have also such leading American women as Lillian M. Hollis- 
ter, Mary Wood Swift, Fannie Humphreys Gaffney,Mrs. Kate 
Waller Barrett, Mrs. M. Josie Nelson, Dr. Etta L. Gilchrist, 
Miss Sadie American, and Mrs. William Todd Helmuth; Miss 
Popelin, of Belgium; Emily Janes, of England; Frokan Kraig, 
of Norway; Baroness von Plateu, of Sweden; Miss Fies, of 
Holland; Marchesa Beamon, of Italy; Miss Blacky and her sis- 
ter Marion and Miss M. M. Anderson, of Scotland; Miss M. 
E. Creighton (sister of the late Lord Bishop of London); 
'Miss Williamson, of England; Mrs. Willoughby Cum- 
mings, of Canada; Miss Balde and the Misses Vorst von 
Boorst, of Holland; Mrs. Leo Grinden, of England; Mrs. 
Anna Hansen, of Denmark, and many others. 

It becomes the duty of the historian to chronicle the fact 
that the year 1910 sees a marked decrease of interest in club 
and council activities, at least in the United States. Women 
have passed the fascinating stage of a personal bowing ac- 
quaintance with most of the sociological and literary ques- 
tions of ancient and modern times; they have lost interest in 
telling and listening about Things and Facts, and have 
turned their attention rather to the doing and achieving of 
deeds and of reformatory work. Civic and labor leagues, with 
city and precinct social settlement work, have supplanted or 
are now largely supplanting the purely literary and art chibs. 
Women, as men, are discovering that all formative work, all 
progressive development rests on the basis of the individual 
versus the individual; that the pursuit of art and beauty and 


culture, unless based on a deeply unselfish foundation's nar- 
rowing to the soul and destructive, in the final analysis, to 
the nation itself. 

The work of the humble, hidden associations among the 
Mormon gfirls began with the foundation principles of loving 
mutual service and mutual individual advancement. Combin- 
ing, however crudely, the inseparable principles of the prac- 
tical and the theoretical, of the social and the educational, as 
of the mental and the spiritual, these associations find them- 
selves still fresh and avid in the pursuit of knowledge tem- 
pered by wisdom and of culture illumined by truth. They 
are not neglecting their prized associations with their eastern 
council co-workers, but send out delegates to the annual 
executive sessions. as to the Triennials held at Washington. 
All in all, we may well be grateful concerning our past asso- 
ciations with the great national and world-wide women- 
movements, satisfied with our present status, and hopeful for 
the future of all concerned in the development of woman and 
women ! 



Mrs. Emma Goddard was born in Lancashire, England, 
April 19, 1861, and she came to this country when a girl of 
seventeen. With her parents, Joseph Nield and Jane Stand- 
ing Nield, she settled in Millard county, Utah. Her 
grandparents on the paternal side came to Utah in 1854, and 
partook of all the hardships incident to the settlement of 
the new country. Her mother, who was a noble woman 
and came of a good English family, sacrificed for her con- 
victions the association of those near of kin, who were very 
dear to her, for after her connection with the Mormon Church 
they entirely ostracized her. 

Emma was a bright pupil and early became a teacher. 
She taught in Millard county for seven years, and subse- 




quently attended the Brig-ham Young Academy in Provo, 
later, in 1889, moving: to Salt Lake City. She has al- 
ways been an eager and earnest student in spiritual as 
well as mental things. She was a Sunday School teacher 
for twenty-five years, and also a member of the ward 

choir many 
years. She was 
made president 
of the Twenty - 
first ward Y. L. 
M. I. A. in Sep- 
tember, 1892, 
and served in 
that capacity 
four years. She 
was married to 
Benjamin God- 
dard in the St. 
George Temple 
in October, 1883, 
and is devotedly 
attached to her 
loved ones. 

Mrs. God- 
dard was chosen 
by President El- 
mina S. Tay- 
lor to act on her 
Board in the 
spring of 1896. 
vShe has since 
traveled exten- 
sively in the in- 
terest of the 

EMMA GODDAKD. caUSG, visiting" 

nearly every stake in Zion. She was a member of one of the 
early Guide committees, acting 1 for several years.- She also 
served for some years on the Journal committee, and was 
untiring- in her services in both capacities. She represented 
the Journal when the Utah Press Club visited the Pacific 
coast in 1902. It is quite natural that she should be a con- 


stant and faithful worker in the Bureau of Information, so 
ably presided over by her husband ever since its organiza- 
tion in 1902. She has traveled some in eastern cities and 
is aggressively proud of her connection with the despised fol- 
lowers of Christ, and the Mormon Prophet. She counts as 
one of her choicest blessings her association with the Y. L. 
M. A. and holds the friendship of Presidents Taylor and 
Tingey as a priceless treasure. 

Sister Goddard possesses the nervous temperament 
which gives unbounded enthusiasm and loyalty to any chosen 
cause; but with that gift goes the suffering of the over-zeal- 
ous worker who spares everyone but himself, and, finally, 
learns that God requires a duty of selfishness as well as un- 
selfishness at our hands. Sister Goddard is a fluent, earnest 
speaker. Her generous appreciation of the worth and labors 
of others keeps her soul sweet and uncankered in the weary- 
ing yet purifying trials of public service. 


Born of that splendid Scotch stock which has produced 
so many heroes and heroines, the Harpers and Wallaces, 
Miss Rose came to earth after her parents had braved the 
scorn of family and friends by joining the Mormons, and 
had emigrated to Utah. She was born in Salt Lake City, 
and was richly endowed by nature, both mentally and physi- 
cally; but having good Scotch sense, the girl walked her 
calm way through all the dangers and pitfalls of youth. She 
was an ardent student, first in the public schools, then in the 
University of Utah, and, later, in the Latter-day Saints' 

She entered the Mutuals when she was only thirteen, 
but she was well grown for her years, and full of an ardent 
desire to secure all the advantages that life had to offer. She 
also became a Sunday School teacher at the tender age of 
thirteen. Her work in this organization was rather unique, 
for she took a class of boys and girls, she herself being but a 
child, and went with this class from grade to grade until 
they reached the highest department. Here she became 
assistant teacher in the theological class. She was also 
busy in the Mutuals, and in 1895 became second counselor 

212 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

to Sister Carrie S. Thomas in the Seventh ward Y. L. M. I. 
A. In 1896, she was chosen by President Taylor to act on the 
General Board as an aid; and she, like all the others, feels 
that deep sense of pride and gratitude that she was chosen 
by Sister Taylor herself. The bond of affection between the 


beautiful and gifted girl and the wise and grand woman of 
seventy, was a very deep and close one. Rose was not only 
active in Mutual and Sunday School but she was a member 
of the ward and Tabernacle choirs until her marriag'e. She 
was united in marriagfe to John F. Bennett, now a member 



of the Sunday School Union Board, November 17, 1897. 
She has borne four children to her husband in the years 
that have followed, besides attending with some regularity 
her Board meetings, and acting on general committees. 

She is a very bright and a very spiritual minded work- 
er. She has the rare gift of wisdom, and her words are al- 
ways garnished with truth. She would scorn a prevarica- 
tion, as she would any other dishonorable act. Her testi- 
mony of the truth of Mormonism is a living, pulsating, deep- 
rooted actuality; not the pale acquiescense too often found in 
the modern girl's heart. She would die for her religion, or 
better still, she would make any necessary sacrifice to live it 
purely and truly. 


The predominant trait in the character of Mrs. McCune 
is genuineness integrity of the purest quality. This it is 
which has made her a cheerful philosopher in the midst of 
pioneer poverty, and which keeps her nature sweet and un- 
spoiled in the midst of her great riches and prosperity. She 
was born of goodly parents in steady old England, and was 
brought, as a babe of nine months, in the year 1852, to the 
wilds of Utah, to join the ever unpopular Mormons. The 
family settled in Nephi, and there the merry, rollicking, witty 
girl grew from infancy to young womanhood. She was one 
of the pioneer telegraphers, as the position of "operator" was 
open, even in those early days in Utah, to women as well as 
men. What operator of the time does not remember the sharp 
clickety click of "Lizzie Claridge," or the deliberate calls of 
"'Lizzie Parks" as they passed jokes along the line, or pro- 
pounded conundrums to fellow-operators hundreds of miles 
away, after business hours? There were few women oper- 
ators in the United States in the early sixties, and most of 
them were in Utah. 

In 1867, Brother Claridge was called to settle in the for- 
bidding country of the "Muddy," in Nevada, and the story of 
that struggle i> written large in the youthful development of 
his brave, undaunted daughter Elizabeth; for her spirit knew 
nothing but hope, courage, and unbounded faith in God and 
her good father. Her remarkable power of adaptation to any 

214 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

environment stood the girl in good stead at this time; her in- 
nate refinement preserved her from all physical coarseness or 
mental stultification. After the "Muddy mission" was 
abandoned, the Claridge family moved to Orderville, and 
took an active part in the United Order. From here Eliza- 
beth moved back to Nephi to take charge of the telegraph 


office. She there renewed the friendship of her early youth 
with Alfred W. McCune. They were married in 1872, and 
the young wife soon found herself surrounded with a new 
environment, for her husband from his early youth was 
successful in all his business operations, and wealth began 
to pour in upon them. 


Mrs. McCune has borne the trials and circumstances of 
success and riches with the same simplicity and grace which 
characterized her early life. She was one of the first women 
to do missionary work in the open field. In 1896 she spent 
several months in England, gathering- genealogy and visiting 
relatives. At this time she turned her beautiful temporary 
summer home, in East Bourne, England, into headquarters 
for the elders in that district, which she and her young daugh- 
ter went upon the streets and helped to sing the songs of Zion, 
in the open air meetings. 

Despising pretense, sham and snobbery as heartily as 
does her sensible husband, Mrs. McCune yet throws the 
mantle of charity over all such faults in others who may ap- 
proach her. Few would divine the sensitive, artistic tem- 
perament hidden beneath the modest exterior of this true 
Saint. The exquisite beauty of her home on the hill Nebo 
House is the best expression of the harmnoy and artistry 
which is a part of this complex character. She inherits from 
her father shrewd common sense and deep religious impulse, 
while to her gentle mother she owes her love of the refined 
and beautiful. 

Mrs. McCune was chosen by Sister Taylor to act as an aid 
in the General Board in 1898, and she has labored diligently 
to fulfill her duties ever since that time. She became a patron 
of the National Council of Women of the United States, and 
later a patron of the International Council of Women, at the 
time of the Congress held in London in 1899. She attended 
that great Congress, and made many friends as well as re- 
newed acquaintance with old ones. She was chosen as a 
Temple worker when the Salt Lake Temple was completed 
in 1903, and in later years has accepted office in the Gene- 
alogical Society of Utah. She is devoted to the work of sal- 
vation for the dead in all its phases, and spends much time 
and means in this unselfish labor, Mrs. McCune recently 
spent two years in South America, where her husband has 
large mining interests. She travels a great deal, and is wel- 
comed by the girls of the Association everywhere. She is 
greatly beloved by the Board, for she is always ready for 
travel or work, in season and out of season, and her infec- 
tious mirth and wit have sweetened many a tiresome hour of 
Board consultations and made this hard work easy. She is 

216 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

a delightful speaker, and possesses an unfailing" tact which 
puts her at once in touch with the spirit of every occasion . 
She is generous, wise, modest, faithful and pure. Her high 
sense of honor and truth makes her a wise counselor and a 
true friend. 


There is one sociological fact connected with the devel- 
opment, of the Mormon people which carries a forceful argu- 
ment with it. The strongest and most enduring building- 
material ever used is called reinforced concrete. This 
material is composed of cement and gravel and sand; and it 
is held together by steel braces distributed throughout the 
mass. The Latter-day Saints have been taken from every 
civilized nation, but mostly from the solid, firm, Teutonic 
peoples. The Mormons are held together by fine steel 
threads which are made out of the Iron Rod of God's Word; 
they have, therefore, every element of strength and endur- 
ance known to human society. From the northern races of 
Europe have come a mighty phalanx of soldiers for Christ. 
The Scandinavian races have given to the Church a sturdy 
strength and solid integrity that has been equalled only by 
their distant cousins, the Britishers. As always, the honest, 
fearless and the pure in heart made up the converts who 
dared to face the scoffing of the world and join the maligned 
Mormons. Of these have been many faithful, and some 
gifted youths and maidens. It has always been interesting 
to the student to see these quiet-spoken foreigners come to 
western America, quaintly dressed, broken in speech, and 
strange to the ways of free thought, free speech, and free 
actions. To watch the rapid change of tone and manner 
and to see the ease with which new ideas form in even the 
slowest mind is a profound proof of the power of environ- 
ment. And when the second generation brings forth its 
yellow-haired, silver-voiced, pink-cheeked, stylishly-dressed 
girls, or the tall, comely, magnetic lads who are the most 
popular beaus in the village, these facts set one to thinking 
on the power of the Gospel to polish and improve. 

These reflections come vividly to mind when considering 
the women of Scandinavia who have been placed in respon- 
sible positions in the Church. Among them all, there is 


none more striking- and more worthy to be considered as a 
type of this illustration than Mrs. Julia M. Brixen of the 
General Board of the Y. L. M. I. A. She was born in 
Sweden, and was baptized into the Church when thirteen 


years of age. Her parents were members of the Lutheran 
church, but both accepted the Gospel and were of the best 
type of converts, although of the working classes. When 
the girl Julia was old enough to work, her parents sent her to 
Utah, to earn something to help emigrate the rest of the 

218 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

family. The child, for she was only a child, found work in 
a large hotel in Salt Lake City. Here she was subject to all 
the temptations to be encountered by the innocent, and too 
often ignorant, of the daughters of Eve. But God and her 
own integrity held her spotless and unsullied in the midst of 
the swirling maelstrom about her. She is blessed with a 
natural dignity and refinement which repelled improper 
associates, and she was likewise protected by two strong life- 
motiveslove of intellectual advancement, and the deter- 
mination to do good to others. She was deeply concerned in 
assisting her parents to emigrate to the favored home of 
the Saints. So she worked early and late, and soon became 
a necessity to the managing department of the busy hotel. 
She still found time to learn first to read the English 
language, and then to put it to use in the perusal of the best 
English authors. The lady-like maid in the hotel had many 
opportunities to answer questions concerning her dear reli- 
gion, as well as to silence the scorn and abuse of thoughtless 
and ignorant strangers. While busy, and therefore happy, 
she was sought in marriage by Mr. Andrew Brixen, who 
soon after became the hotel proprietor. She accepted his 
offer, and was married August 16th, 1880. The intelligent 
maid now became the intelligent mistress, and her opportun- 
ities were infinitely enlarged in all directions. Her parents 
had been helped by her savings to follow her to America, 
and she still helped them, until they had enough to buy a 
comfortable home . Mrs. Brixen traveled a good deal in the 
United States with her husband, and made one protracted 
tour in Europe in his company. She visited her native land 
and spent considerable time and money in gathering up the 
genealogical data concerning her own and her husband's 
family. She had been told, through the gift of tongues, that 
the responsibility of redeeming the dead of her father's 
household rested upon her shoulders; and she could not rest 
till she had gleaned all the information possible to obtain in 
her native land. Her husband was quite willing to aid her 
in this, and together they made their pleasure-tour in Europe 
a profit as well as a delight. On their return the wife has- 
tened to complete the work she had begun in the Temple of 
the Lord, both for her own and her husband's dead. 

Mrs. Brixen was chosen to act as first counselor to 


Ag-nes Campbell of the Twentieth ward Y. L. M. I. A., in 
1898. Three years later she was elected president, on the 
resignation of Miss Campbell. She has been a Sunday 
School teacher for some years. In April, 1898, she was 
invited by Sister Mary A. Freeze to act on the Salt Lake 
stake board, but when she attended the meeting- at which 
she was to be voted in, she found President Elmina S. Tay- 
lor present, and to her surprise, learned that Sister Taylor 
had selected her, with Sister Elizabeth C. McCune and 
Sister Ruth M. Fox,, to act on her board. She was voted 
into the General Board, May 2, 1898. Sister Brixen is a 
very active and valuable member of the Board. She has 
done yeoman service in traveling all over the West in her 
capacity as aid. She has acted on important committees, 
both temporary and permanent. She bears as strong- and 
faithful a testimony of the truth of the Gospel of Christ as 
any soul in the Church. When the Bureau of Information 
was organized she was called as a member, and has been ac- 
tive in that work. 


General Conferences and Socials. Conventions. Gymnasiums. 

ONE great lesson that has been set before intelligent men 
and women of today is that of co-relation of econom- 
ics. Moreover, to co-operate in all matters affecting 
economic and social life, is the demand of the ages; if we 
have learned anything from the pages of history, it is that 
there should be no classes and masses, no capital and labor 
in the ideal life, no sex divisions in civil and social affairs. 
It is true that there are varying grades of capacity in men, 
and this will always lead to a division or classification. It 
is true also that men have their peculiar interests in busi- 
ness and civil life, while women have their own field of ac- 
tivity, and this will necessarily tend to create sex division in 
both civil and religious life. But the statesman who looks 
toward the altruism of the future will teach the strong that 
their strength is given its highest expression in protecting 
the weak; and that superiority of intellect is a menace to 
civilization, unless it carries with it the compelling force to 
use all superior advantages for the uplifting of the inferior 
and ignorant. So, too, the sex lines can be drawn safely 
only when occupation, not natural dominance, draws them. 
It is right enough for men to classify themselves on sex 
lines, when war and protection from inimical force is the 
motive; and, too, it is proper enough for women to consider 
by themselves questions pertaining to the conduct of home 
labors and duties. But there are certain large questions 
which pertain to public as well as individual policy which 
can never be left safely to the consideration of either sex 
alone. May there not be some matters in which the loving 


sympathy of her womanly heart, fit the mother to be a joint 
leader in public as well as private affairs? The gravest mis- 
take of modern times is for men and women to consider and 
discuss the social and civil questions of life separate from one 
another. The women who go out to reform the world alone 
as a sex will find themselves as far away from success when 
they finish as when they began. Likewise, the men who 
legislate on family and social questions without the assist- 
ance of wise mothers and wives, will not succeed in making 
just laws or administering exact justice. Therefore, in 
social as well as educational labors, the sexes should be found 
working side by side. 

It was, no doubt, some thought of this kind, which 
prompted the general superintendency of the Young Men's 
Associations in 1896 to consider the propriety of inviting the 
Young Ladies' Associations to join them in a conference 
once a year. Naturally this general conjoint movement 
would suggest a like combination of the stake boards in a 
similar yearly conference. A brief outline of the outgrowth 
of this combination of the two forces, both in a general and 
local form, was given in a former chapter. As a matter of 
historical detail it will be well to record here that the first 
step taken in this direction was in the latter part of Febru- 
ary, 1896, when President Elmina S. Taylor and her Board 
were invited to meet officially with President Wilford Wood- 
ruff and the General Board of the Young Men's Associations, 
to consider the advisability of calling a conjoint conference 
in June of that year. She graciously accepted the invita- 
tion, and the conjoint movement was very soon an estab- 
lished fact. 

The labors incident to their first conjoint conference 
were taken up vigorously by both boards. Committees were 
named on program, on the reception and entertainment 
of visitors, and on general arrangements. 

222 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

The first conjoint conference convened on the morning- 
of May 30, 1896, in Salt Lake City; the young men meeting- 
first separately in Social Hall, the young- women holding 
their officers' business meeting: in the Fourteenth ward As- 
sembly Hall. In the afternoon and evening- conjoint public 
sessions of the general conference were held in the Taber- 
nacle. There were also three conjoint public sessions held 
on the following- day (Sunday), and the time was divided 
equally between the two associations. President Elmina S. 
Taylor assisted in conducting the exercises. The meetings 
were crowded, and the utmost interest was manifested by all 
classes of people in this new departure. These general June 
conjoint conferences soon became a regular feature of the 
Mutual Improvement work as has been stated in a former 
chapter, and they were amply justified by their increasing 
success and influence. 

The power and value of the social element in life is 
rarely understood, especially by those most affected for good 
or evil by its influence. The teacher, the parent, and the 
minister of the gospel too often consider their whole duty to 
young people performed when they have taught them their 
lessons, have fed and clothed them, and have made them 
listen to a sermon or lecture on the Sabbath day. But there 
is a greater teacher than the pedagogue, a subtler reasoner 
than the parent, and a stronger force than the sermon or the 
rebuke: it is the play of the growing boy, the amusement of 
the child or budding girl. "Give me your children in their 
hours of play, and I will guarantee them against all other 
influences," said a great philosopher. 

This profound truth was well understood by the Prophet 
Joseph Smith and by Brigham Young, and theaters were 
built side by side with churches. You could dance in the 
ward schoolhouse and church in the early days, at least until 
there was an amusement hall erected for that purpose; only 


and always,in dance or in drama, there must be nothing common 
or unclean . David , the psalmist , danced to the Lord of the He- 
brews; and Miriam led the Hebrew women in a song" and dance 
on the shores of the Red Sea. Such has always been the wise 
policy of this Church, from the time of the Prophet Joseph 
Smith. Earnest people are sometimes inclined to underesti- 
mate the value of this factor for good and evil in the life of 
human beings; but the leading men and women among this 
people have always advocated close attention to and personal 
association in the amusements of young- and old. Therefore 
it was, when the_ conjoint conference of the two M. I. Associ- 
ations became a settled institution, that the need was felt for 
some social features to be affixed. It was deemed essential 
to draw all the elements into a closer touch and deeper re- 
lationship than could be gained from public sessions and for- 
mal meetings. Then, too, the members of the General 
Boards felt that they were under some measure of personal 
obligation to the various stake officials who had entertained 
them. Underlying: it all, was the sub-conscious knowledge 
that the social lever is the strongest one that can be used in 
the elevation of humanity. The Savior of the world went 
to a social entertainment, given in His honor by a despised 
publican, who had no other merit than common honesty and 
an uncommon appreciation of his own unworthiness. The 
Master well understood the power g-ained by social contact 
with all classes of people. 

The first social function undertaken by the two General 
Boards of the Mutual Improvement Associations was ar- 
ranged in their second general conference, when it was de- 
cided to give a reception and banquet in one of the large 
halls in Salt Lake City. A great deal of work was involved 
in the preparation to entertain the three or four hundred 
visitors; and numerous committees labored faithfully for 
weeks to produce the final brilliant affair which occurred at 

224 HISTORY OF Y. L. M. I. A. 

the Fifteenth ward meetinghouse. Flowers were every- 
where; a string- band, concealed behind a bank of palms, 
discoursed sweet music. The reception was followed by a 
banquet interspersed with toasts and music. The brilliant 
toastmaster, Major Richard W. Young-, carried off the pro- 
gram of toasts and sentiments with great success and eclat; 
and the whole affair was as enjoyable as a social entertain- 
ment could well be. 

These social features now seem a necessary part of the 
June conference; and there have been many enjoyable and 
successful ones given since that evening; notably those given 
at the palatial homes of Mrs. Elizabeth C. McC.une, both in 
the old Gardo House and in her new residence on the hill. 
There have been beautiful affairs given at the historic old 
Bee Hive House, through the courtesy of both President 
Lorenzo Snow and President Joseph F. Smith. These occa- 
sions were especially appreciated by visiting members. 

Following this example of the two General Boards, the 
stake officials have planned regular conference socials, held 
at their conference or convention times. Concerts, theatri- 
cals, parties of various kinds are given, with an occasional fair 
or fruit festival. Wards have also adopted the same plan, at 
least to some extent. This year (1910) a systematic and de- 
termined effort is to be made to place all the ward amuse- 
ments under the charge and supervision of the Mutual offi- 
cers. Debates, story-telling contests and amateur home- 
written theatricals are to be provided to take the place of 
poor moving-picture shows and the promiscuous "dance." 

The history of the evolution of the fall conventions which 
is the best expression of our conjoint work and which has now 
become so systematized and valuable that it is simply indis- 
pensable, is a natural outgrowth of the June conjoint confer- 

Until 1903 stake conferences were, as a rule, held twice 


a year, a separate Young- Ladies' conference, and a conjoint 
Young Men's and Young- Ladies' conference, both of which, 
as far as possible, were visited by members of the General 
Boards. The General Board of the Young Men's Association, 
feeling the need of a brief training school or business confer- 
ence for their stake and ward associations, called a series of 
conventions, for the month of September, in 1902. . The local 
sisters' associations, realizing the great value of these con- 
ventions, began to ask for similar gatherings . Accordingly, in 
the spring of 1903, arrangements were made to hold conven- 
tions for both wings of the Mutuals at the same time, and the 
custom is now thoroughly established. The conventions 
are planned as a training school in the mechanical labors 
of the local and the stake work, that is, the machinery of 
the associations is dissected and displayed for the profit and 
learning of the constantly changing officers. How to pre- 
sent the lesson, how to obtain results, and how to combine 
both mental and spiritual improvement in the most suc- 
cessful manner is the object of these conventions. 

From the beginning, the Young Men's local ward meet- 
ings have been held, almost without exception, in the winter 
months only. This is because of the rural occupations of the 
boys of the country towns, the short summer nights, and 
many distractions of summer city life. For some years the 
young women kept up their summer's work, independent 
and successful, but in many places they succumbed to the 
popular movement. Therefore these fall conventions were to 
prove of great value to both associations, for they would serve 
to open the season with the proper impetus and engender 
enthusiasm in the very beginning of the year's work. An 
idea of the condition of the associations, and the work first at- 
tempted, can be gained by a perusal of the first convention 
program (1903): 


226 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Y. L. M. L A., Session, 10 a. m. 

1 . Preparation for the Opening of the Season . 

2. Parliamentary Drill. 

3. Grading- the Associations. 

4. Class Work. 

5. Guide Work. 

Y. L. M. I. A., Session, 2 p. m. 

1. Secretaries. 

2. The Dime Fund. 

3. The Young Woman's Journal. 

4. Traveling Libraries. 
Conjoint Session, 7:30 p. m. 

1. Amusements. 

2. Conjoint Officers' Meeting. 

3. Preliminary Programs. 

The convention committees of the two General Boards 
meet in the early spring and map out a suggestive list of fall 
convention dates which is submitted to the stakes for approval 
or correction. These dates must all be crowded into the 
months of August and September, they must not conflict with 
the regular stake conference dates, nor with Relief Society, 
Sunday School, or Primary Association dates, so that on 
some Sundays there will be as many as fourteen conventions 
held. This entails much traveling, a numerous corps of 
visiting General Board officials, all of whom are busy, unpaid 
people; it also requires the expenditure of considerable sums 
of money for actual traveling expenses. 

The general convention committee, which is usually a 
temporary one consisting of three representatives from each 
board, perfect these dates after receiving corrected dates 
from stake officials, and draw up a plan of desired con- 
joint work, then their joint labors are at an end. Next, each 
separate general convention committee prepares a circular 
for general distribution in the separate associations, contain- 
ing dates set, general and special instructions, and an outline 


program for the convention work. No description of the 
thoroughness of this work will answer so well as the insertion 
in this history of our latest Y. L. M. I. A. circular. It is 
here appended: 

Please send at once to ward Presidents a sufficient number to sup- 
ply each local officer. 


Salt Lake City, July 1st, 1909. 

To the Stake Presidents and all Stake and Local Officers of the 
Young Ladies' 1 Mutual Improvement Associations: 

Dear Fellow Officers: Do all in your power to secure a 
full attendance of your officers at this convention. The more 
you can gather, the better, not only because of the instruc- 
tion they will receive, but because of the spirit of enthusiasm 
they will carry to their local work. 

In order to get the most out of the convention, each offi- 
cer should carefully study the topics and think along the lines 
suggested. For this reason send the circular to the officers 
as soon as possible, that all may be able to join in the dis- 


1. Distribute these circulars at once to all stake and 
ward officers including class teachers, and to the stake presi- 
dency and bishopric, requesting their presence at the con- 

2. Consult the stake superintendent Y. M. M. I. A. 
and the presidency of your stake; together agree upon and 
arrange for places of meetings where the Sunday School and 
ward meetings will not be interfered with. 

3. Hold a meeting of the stake board immediately 
after receiving these outlines to plan the convention work. 

4. Assign the topics to the most competent persons and 
limit talks to the time specified in program. 

5. Provide suitable music. 

6. Arrange for the two separate meetings of the Y. L. 

228 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

M. I. A. at 10 a. m. and 2 p. m., inviting the stake presi- 
dency, high council, bishops and their counselors and all 
stake officers of the auxiliary associations to be present. 
Where traveling has to be done by teams, ask for co-oper- 
ation of the brethren, both stake and local, in providing 
transportation for your girls. 

7. Advertise the convention in the local papers and re- 
quest the bishops to have notice given out in all ward meet- 

8. Have all Sunday School teachers who are Mutual 
Improvement officers or class leaders excused from Sunday 
School to attend the convention. This is in accordance with 
instructions from the First Presidency. 

9. See that your ward organizations are complete and 
class leaders selected for the coming year that they may get 
the benefit of the convention . 

10. Instruct members to bring note books and pencils. 

11. Provide suitable accommodations for visitors from 
the outlying wards. Let the luncheon between morning and 
afternoon meeting be a light repast and have all ar- 
rangements as simple as possible. We prefer having our 
girls in the meetings rather than preparing elaborate meals. 

12. Be sure all arrangements are made so there will be 
no need of whispeied consultations in meeting. Begin the 
convention promptly. Invite the visiting brethren and sis- 
ters to take part in the discussion. Endeavor to hold all 
speakers to the subject under consideration. 


Morning Session 10 o' clock. 

(NOTE The purpose of the morning and afternoon ses- 
sions is to consider our coining season's work as fully as 

I. TESTIMONY MEETINGS How to Make Them Successful. 
(15-minute address.) 

Ask and it shall be given you; seek and ye shall find; knock 
and it shall be opened unto you. Matt. 7 : 7 . 


A . Purpose . 

B . Preparation . 

1. Mental. 

(a) Read standard Church works; Faith Pro- 
moting- Series; biographies of good men 
and women. See John 3: 39. 

(b) Observe: Praiseworthy traits; fine ex- 
amples; nature's beauties. 

2. Spiritual. 

(a) Prayer. 

(b) Purity of Life. 

(c) Companionship of Holy Spirit; See John 
14: 26; Doc. & Cov. 84, 85; Book of Mor- 
mon, Moroni 10: 4-5. 

(See President Tingey's talk in July fournaL 
Further suggestions and discussion, 10 minutes. 

II. THE APOSTASY (10-minute address.) 

A. Importance of the subject. 

1. The fundamental claim of the Church of Jesus 
Christ of Latter-day Saints rests on the restor- 
ation of the Gospel in the present dispensation. 

2. Had there been no general apostasy from the 
Primitive Crmrch there could have been no res- 

B. Plan of this course of lessons. 

1. The subject is most appropriate at the present 
stage of our study coming as it does after the 
lessons dealing with the apostolic age, and pre- 
paratory to a study of the history of the Re- 
stored Church. 

2. Material for study. 

(a) The Scriptures, both ancient and modern, 
prove the fact of the great apostasy. An- 
cient Scriptures predict it; modern Scrip- 
tures affirm it as having taken place. 

(b) History other than scriptural. The les- 
sons will comprise citations from historians 
of the period extending from the ' 'Meridian 
of Time" to the present age, with sugges- 
tions as to the proper interpretation of such. 

230 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

NOTE Ample material for preparing this brief address 
will be found in the first lesson of the course already pub- 
lished in the Journal for July. This lesson presents in out- 
line the plan of the course. 

III. QUESTIONS. (To be asked by a stake officer.) 

1. How do you expect to draw in the girls who 
should be members and are not? 

2. What plan will you adopt to secure their regu- 
lar attendance? 

3. How do you hope to make welcome and interest 
newcomers among you? 

4. Mention some plan that will especially interest 
and bring into use the talents of the foreign 
girls. Those musically inclined. Dramatically. 
Socially. Those whose tastes are domestic. 
Those who are fond of needlework. 

5. How can you secure prompt attendance? 

6. How are you going to maintain order? 

7. What has been your most successful method in 
securing home preparation? 

8. What method have you adopted to get reports 
of home reading? What can you do to increase 
home reading? 

9. When you observe the conduct of your girls how 
do you let them know that you approve or cen- 
sure their actions? 

10. What can you do to improve the health of your 

Afternoon Session 2 o' clock. 

IV. THE HOME. (15-minute address.) 
A. Purpose of the course: 

1. To present the ideal Latter-day Saint home. 

2. To instill a love of home and its responsibilities. 

3. To show the dignity of work. 

4. To teach girls to practice what they learn. 

5. To teach them to make the best use of what 
they possess. 

6. To teach them to put their best efforts into 
everything they do. 

7. To teach willing and loving service. 


B. How to attain these results. 

1. Let the spirit of the Gospel permeate all teach- 

2. Present ideal conditions, even though unable to 
attain them yourselves. "Hitch your wagon to 
a star." 

3. Be not dogmatic; another's plan may be as 
good as yours. 

4. Encourage free expression of ideas. 

5. Emphasize your teaching by any scriptural ref- 
erences on the subject. 

6. Never be discouraged. 

The outlines for the two courses will be found in the 
Officers' Notes of the June and July Journals. They should 
be read carefully, but the divisions can not be treated in de- 
tail in this 15 -minute talk on account of lack of time. 

V. THE YEAR'S LITERARY COURSE. (10-minute address.) 

Read the outlines as presented in Officers' Notes of June 
and July Journals and present the points most needed in your 
stake . 

VI. REMARKS. Visitors. 

Conjoint Evening Session Time Appointed by Stake Boards 
Public Invited. 

One musical numbtr should be furnished by the Young- 
Ladies, and one by the Young Men, leaving the remainder 
of the evening free to be filled according- to the inspiration of 
the hour. If it should happen that no members of the Gener- 
al Boards are present, the stake officers shoulcl be prepared 
to occupy the time, giving" any necessary instructions on 
Mutual Improvement work or matters essential to the wel- 
fare of our young people. 

We hope that the convention topics will be very bene- 
ficial; and that this year's work will be more successful than 
has that of any previous year. 

Each year the convention work has been handled better 
and the attendance has increasad. Seek to make this year's 

232 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

convention surpass all others in work accomplished, attend- 
ance of officers, and spirit manifested. 

With heartfelt appreciation for your splendid efforts in 
the past, with earnest prayers for your continued success, 
and with love for you all, we are, 
Your co-workers, 

By MARTHA H. TINGEY, President. 

RUTH M. Fox, First Counselor. 
MAE T. NYSTROM, Second Counselor. 

Consider the traveling- entailed upon the General Board 
who must attend these conventions! Never less than three 
and sometimes six weeks are spent in visiting the Mexico 
and Arizona stakes; while nearly as much time is con- 
sumed in visiting the Canada and Idaho stakes. Big Horn 
is in Wyoming and it requires several days away from home 
to spend one day there. Union is near Portland, Oregon; Star 
Valley, in Wyoming; many others involve from twenty-five 
to one hundred and fifty mile rides over dusty roads, in ad- 
dition to the distance by railroad; many of these trips require 
the catching of trains in the middle of the night, sitting- in way 
stations for hours to change cars, and all the trying incidents 
due to hurried journeys. Yet these duties are undertaken with 
light hearts and cheerful spirits by members of the two Gen- 
eral Boards, for the appreciation and hospitality shown to the 
visitors by stake officials at the end of the trips is of the most 
genuine type. 

The stake officers and members meanwhile have their 
hands full to prepare for these fall conventions. Halls must 
be secured, notices published, circulars distributed, speakers 
chosen, and topics assigned. Every ward must be represent- 
ed and when the visitors from both the local wards and the 
General Board come into town, good and sufficient entertain- 
ment must be provided. Asa nil e, light refreshments are 
served at the noon hour on Sunday, and this must be arranged . 
Music is an important feature of all our work, so that chor- 


uses, solos and quartets must be provided; and not only pro- 
vided, but supervised lest unseemly words or songs shall be 
chosen by thoughtless young musicians. For all this work 
stake joint committees are chosen with many sub- committees 
on decoration, music, refreshments, press and program. Thus, 
an army of young people is at work during the early fall 
season planning and preparing for the fall conventions. Could 
anything better be conceived of to occupy the time and enlist 
the sympathy of these young restless spirits? To distribute 
responsibility is to call into action the best elements of many 
human souls, directing in a proper channel the strenuous en- 
ergies of bubbling youth. As a rule schools, to absorb time 
and strength, have not yet begun in August and September 
when the conventions are held; crops are gathered, vacation 
has added zest to labor and lightness to every endeavor; so that 
again is demonstrated the Divine wisdom in thus calling into 
action all the forces of youth at the renewal season of the year. 

The latest and most costly outgrowth of the work done 
for the physical development of the young people of this 
Church is, perhaps, the indirect result of an early effort 
made in this direction by the conjoint M. I. A. boards of the 
Salt Lake stake of Zion. 

In 1895, some of the enterprising young spirits connected 
with that stake conceived the idea that a centralization of ef- 
fort might well be made to group the scattered interests in 
physical education, and in libraries, in the establishment of 
an up-to-date gymnasium and reading room for Salt Lake City. 
The Mutual Improvement League was organized in 1895 with 
the two Salt Lake stake boards at its head. The Social Hall, 
the historic place of happy memories, was secured as head- 
quarters, and the fine gymnasium already established in this 
place by Prof. Maud May Babcock 'was purchased. This 
brilliant young convert to Mormonism, with many others, 
gave her heart and soul to the successful establishment of the 
League. The M.I. libraries belonging to all the wards in 

234 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

the Salt Lake stake of Zion were generously turned over to 
the reading room of the League. The lower part of the 
house was used as the library, and the upper part remained as 
the gymnasium. 

For three years, this enterprise struggled on; first, as a 
stake affair, later under the two General Boards, then again 
under the Salt Lake stake boards. But at the end of this 
time it was decided to discontinue the organization. One 
very possible reason, which constitutes a vital part of our re- 
ligion was: in all rural and agricultural communities, the 
stake, the ward, the home, can withdraw within itself, 
with sufficient force to nullify any outside attraction or temp- 
tation. The home is patterned after the heavenly dwelling 
of our Divine parents; the ward is merely an ecclesiastical 
collection of homes; and the stake is a group of wards. The 
whole effort of the teachers and leaders amongst us is and 
should be to increase the attractiveness of the home; to make 
of the ward just a larger family group; and to carry into 
the stake this close relationship. Because of this, the young 
people are generally engaged at home, especially in the coun- 
try, with all their spare time spent in the larger circle of the 
ward; even in Salt Lake City, few young Mormons have 
acquired the "club" or "up-town" habit. 

For these reasons, the Mutual Improvement League work 
was not long successful. But some noble efforts were put 
forth and surely no good thought or effort is wasted; a num- 
ber of young people got some valuable experiences, and 
much incidental good was accomplished. The mother who 
bears and watches over a delicate child, only to see it, at last, 
fade and die, would never admit that her child w r ould better 
never have been born; she knows, if no one else in all the 
world does, what a developing and fruitful experience her 
struggle has been to her. And so we cannot speak of the M- 
I. League as a failure. 


In the larger cities the need of a central gymnasium to 
take the place of country exercises and sports has been deeply 
felt of late years. Several stakes have made special effort to 
meet this need. To the recent efforts put forth, more par- 
ticularly by the enterprising- officers of the Young- Men's 
General Board, must be added the needs of the L. D. S. 
Hig-h School. These two organizations combined and per- 
suaded the Church authorities to assist them in the erection 
of a handsome, modern g-ymnasium. In the board of con- 
trol, which was recently org-anized, two young- women, both 
of them active workers in that previous effort long ago, were 
chosen to act. Prof. Maud May Babcock, physical director 
of the U. of U. and founder of physical education in this region, 
with Miss Ann M. Cannon, one of MissBabcock's first pupils, 
have been thus honored. The Deseret Gymnasium is located 
at the corner of College and Temple avenue, in the center of 
the block east of the Salt Lake Temple. It is one of the 
finest structures in the United States and is perfectly equip- 
ped. Miss Anna Nebeker, former president of Nebo stake 
Y. L. M. I. A., is special director of the work for women, 
and is ably assisted by the Misses Mary Johnson, Hazel Ed- 
wards and Margaret Caldwell. Prof. Wm. E. Day who has 
had many years experience in Young Men's Christian Asso- 
ciation work, has supervision of all the physical work in the 
institution. H. Leo Marshall and Robert Richardson are 
Mr. Day's assistants in the work for men. Use of the build- 
ing is divided proportionately between men and women, cer- 
tain hours being given exclusively to each. While the 
greatest benefits from this gymnasium accrue to the people 
of Salt Lake, Ensign, Liberty, Pioneer and Granite stakes, 
it is hoped to be of service to others also, by training young 
men and women as teachers for the more distant stakes. 

In conclusion, let us say, the lines of demarcation are 
and always have been drawn very rigidly between the 

236 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Young Men's and the Young" Ladies' work, notwithstanding 
all the conjoint activities which have here been dwelt upon. 
In ward, in stake and in general capacity, each carries on 
his or her labor absolutely independent of the other, save 
and except where conjoint programs and conferences are in- 
volved. The young: men have their own distinct studies, 
scarcely knowing or caring- what lines are followed by the 
girls; each has its own magazine, and its own social and 
financial problems. When there are conjoint meetings to 
plan, amusements to project or gymnasiums to build or 
equip, the boards or committees meet in a local or general 
way and engage in free but formal discussion. There ar' 
few attempts by the young men to assume any dictatorship, 
as there are rare instances on the other hand of servile de- 
pendence on the part of the girls. Each knows his or her 
duty and place, and the whole machinery, adjusted by the 
priesthood and maintained in loving mutual service, moves 
smoothly and rapidly onward. 



Helen Winters Woodruff was a sister to Mrs. Augusta 
W. Grant. Theirs was a family of superior and intelligent 
girls, trained in a superior and womanly way. All of them 
developed into the type of wives and mothers which fill the 
world with the glory of womanhood. Helen was the young- 
est.. She was a mixture of the intelligence, beauty, vivacity 
and integrity which was divided up among the others in 
varying portions. She was as merry and as frolicsome as a 
twittering robin, and as genuine as a pure soul and a strong 
will could make a human being. She was born in Pleasant 
Grove, Utah county, Utah, September 24, 1873. She re- 
ceived all the scholastic advantages which the country afford- 
ed. . In her teens she was a graduate from the Brigham 
Young University; she was also active in Mutual work from 
her childhood. She taught school in Salina, Sevier county, 



and in Coalville. Afterwards she studied at the State Uni- 
versity. During- her course in that school, she met Abraham 
O. Woodruff, who had just returned from a German mission. 
They were married in the Salt Lake Temple in 1897. After 
their union, no one who ever knew them thought of them 
apart. If ever God made two perfectly congenial and mated 
souls, that couple were Owen and Helen Woodruff. When 


Owen was called to the apostleship, and later to work on 
the General Board of the Y. M. M. I. A., it seemed the 
proper thing- to call Helen to be an aid to Sister Taylor. 
She was set apart to that office in 1898. She labored in- 
cessantly in that position until her sudden and sad death. 
She was an ardent lover of children, and when her little ones 
came pouring- into her household, she was but the happier 
and the prouder. She was the picture of haughty, incensed 
motherhood to the would-be scoffer who might seek to ca,it 
a slur at this old-fashioned ideal of child-bearing. Her 
tongue was a well-spring of merriment and gayety untouched 
with venom and innocent of slander. But she could rebuke, 



and with sharpness, when thoughtlessness or insult attacked 
the principles she held dear. Helen was a born mimic; she 
could wind a cloak aboiit her splendid shoulders, stoop them 
as a sign of age, and with a torn hat, she was the perfect 
presentment of a whining- old man. The various broken 
European tongues were tripped off her lips with an added 
jest or repartee which would convulse a whole audience of 
sober people. And yet her wit had never a trace of malice, 
nor did her jest carry an untoward suggestion beneath its 
fun. She was a queenly girl, and a true mate to her kingly 
husband. They had four beautiful children, whose sweet 
faces are here pictured. 

Owen and Helen made a name and memory for them- 
selves in every pioneer settlement in the borders of Zion. 
The Saints in the Big Horn country looked upon Apostle 
Owen Woodruff and his lovely young wife as next only to the 
angels. It is an inspiring thing to hear of the fulfilled 
prophecy and the untiring labors of this faithful apostle . Out 
upon the evening air in hundreds of humble homes in Big 
Horn there steals, at sunset, the sound of a family hymn, 



and the soft silence which follows, marks the low-toned ap- 
peal to heaven for daily mercies. Their patron apostle 
promised this believing 1 community that if they would follow 
this simple practice, none of their posterity should wander 
from the fold of Christ. And they have believed! Shall ' it 
not be accounted unto them for righteousness? 

When Apostle Woodruff and his family set out for Mexico 
in the spring- of 1904, no one dreamed of the tragedy which was 
to follow. Both were as happy and as trustful as of old. But in 
the month of June of that year, they both died of that fearsome 
disease, small-pox. Away from family and home, but never 
away from friends, everything that love could dictate or pro- 
vide was done and given to soothe and comfort them. Hel- 
en died first, in the City of Mexico. Owen got as far as El 
Paso on his return with the children, when he, too, was 
stricken, and life here was changed for him to life eternal. 
Together they had lived, labored and loved, and together 
they died. They were buried in that far-away land; but the 
memorial service in memory of the beloved dead was as 
glorious as mortality might ever witness. 

Helen is at work, over There, beside her beloved hus- 
band, and associated with her revered leader, President El- 
mina S. Taylor! There she is, still merry without guile, 
and happy without pain. We shall all meet her there on 
that eternal board of women workers for truth and progress. 


Born in a family where intelligence and spiritual refine- 
ment were the predominating influences, Augusta Winters 
was early trained to habits of physical and mental industry. 
She was born July 7, 1856, in Pleasant Grove. Her parents 
were poor, but ambitious and progressive. The mother 
taught the girls the arts of weaving, spinning, cooking, sew- 
ing, dressmaking, wool-carding and general housework. 
Mrs. Grant says: "I knitted stockings, made dresses, sewed 
and wove rag carpets, carded wool, planted potatoes and 
corn, dried fruit, helped to convert sugar cane into pioneer 
molasses, and twice papered a room. But," she adds, with 
characteristic candor, "I would never choose any of these 
occupations as my life-work." In the family there were five 

240 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

girls and three boys, one boy dying- in infancy, all excellent 
characters and faithful workers. 

Mrs. Grant possesses the gift of pedagogy to a marked 
degree. Almost from the time she learned her letters, she 
has acted as a pupil-teacher. Her mother was a school- 
teacher, and all of the daughters followed that profession. 
Augusta was especially gifted in the power to impart what 
she knew to others. At the age of twelve, she acted as an 
assistant teacher to an old lady, Mrs. Laura Liston, in a 
summer school, thus paying her own tuition, as well as that 
of her two sisters. She attended the Timpanogas school in 
Provo, and later entered the Brigham Young Academy, 
when that school was organized. She also attended the 
State University, graduating from the second normal class, 
in 1877. She taught school between times, to assist in pay- 
ing for her education, although her parents also did all in 
their power to give their children every educational advan- 
tage. At the age of sixteen, she assumed entire charge of 
a school, which happened to be a summer school. Next 
summer she took another school, with two assistants. She 
has taught school in Pleasant Grove, West Jordan, Cotton- 
wood, Mill Creek, Farmington and Salt Lake City. She be- 
gan with a salary of thirty dollars, and ended with one hun- 
dred dollars a month. Mrs. Grant was an early telegrapher, 
but used her skill only as a substitute and for a short period. 

One circumstance will illustrate her lovely mother's 
abiding faith, and the daughter's calm reliance on the prom- 
ises of the Holy Spirit. The mother had taught her young 
daughter the principle of tithing; and, during her early 
school-teaching venture she begged Augusta to pay her tith- 
ing, although the salary was small. "if you will do this," 
said the mother, "I will promise you through the spirit of 
prophecy, that next year your salary will be increased." 
The girl carried out the counsel to the letter. School and 
the winter were ended, but there was no call at any price 
for the youthful teacher's services for the next year. Occa- 
sionally, through the following summer, the girl would say, 
in her gentle, laughing way: "Well, mother, the increase in 
salary is not in sight yet." And the mother would answer 
with counter-assurances. Finally, the Saturday before the 
regular school term was to begin arrived, but no engage- 



ment was in sight. Without the least lack of faith the girl 
still made merry in her innocent way at her mother's ex- 
pense. That very afternoon, the post brought a letter from 
another county, offering the salary of sixty dollars a month, 


and in twenty-four hours the young teacher was in her new 
temporary home. 

Mrs. Grant is very proud of all these early experiences 
of struggle and effort, and nothing delights her more than to 
meet her former pupils, scattered all through the Church. 
She taught for about ten years, when she was married to 


242 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Apostle Heber J. Grant. She has had but one child, a 
daughter, and that she feels is a gift from God. But what 
God had denied to her in one way, He granted in another; 
for it has always been her lot to "mother" a large family, 
her husband's motherless children and others. 

Mrs. Grant has been active in Church and club work for 
a long' time. She has acted as secretary in some organiza- 
tion ever since she was fourteen years of age. She was then 
made secretary of the 'first Y. L. M. I. Association in her 
home town. She has since served the Thirteenth ward Re- 
lief Society, the Salt Lake stake Relief Society, and the 
Free Kindergarten in the same capacity. She was the first 
president of the State Kindergarten Society of Utah, and has 
been a member of a number of home clubs. She has trav- 
eled quite extensively in her own country, and spent fifteen 
months in Japan with her husband when that mission was 
first opened. 

Mrs. Grant is the embodiment of peace and beautiful 
repose. When asked how one might acquire this charming 
and restful quality of character and habit, she laughingly 
replied: "I have always had all I wanted, because I never 
wanted more than I had. I always like to do what I have to 
do, and I never want very badly what I can't have, therefore 
I am always quite contented and happy. I don't believe in 
telling my troubles to others, nor in thinking I have any; for 
then, I really don't have them. But there is one thing," she 
added, "which is a trial tome, public speaking." Mrs. Grant 
is, notwithstanding, a pleasing speaker, and never bores one 
by talking of things about which she knows little. She is an 
indefatigable worker on committees, and never fails in her 
duty. She loves peace and would not willingly oppose or 
enter into long arguments, but if it comes to the point where 
her decision must be given for or against, she gives it frank- 
ly, without fear or favor. One of the loveliest traits about 
this charming woman is her exquisite charity. She never 
reviles and rarely even criticizes. She may lack spontaneity 
and enthusiasm, for she has such a perfect abhorrence of 
flattery, insincerity and exaggeration, that she is inclined to 
go to the other extreme and scarcely gives sufficient expres- 
sion to her real 'feelings, and might be judged as lacking in 
this regard. In her position she sets an admirable example 


of "the simple life" in dress and living-. Her mother's good 
teachings are still on her lips and in her heart and the reso- 
lutions made so many years ago in the Retrenchment Society 
in Pleasant Grove still are in force in Mrs. Grant's life and 
example. In addition to her other public duties, Mrs. Grant 
tries to spend one day each week in the Temple, working in 
her modest and entirely private way. She is not only con- 
verted to this work because of the marvelous blessings re- 
ceived in this labor, but because her soul delig-hts in the 
thought of setting the captive free. The keynote of her 
character is obedience to law and authority. She finds time 
to spend an occasional half-day in the service of the Bureau 
of Information. Mrs. Grant is a recognized leader in social 
circles; but so modest and unselfish is her sway that she 
draws all hearts after her. So well-planned and simple are 
her household arrang-ements that all under her roof are well 
cared for and content. She is an intelligent and discrimi- 
nating reader and a thoroughly well-educated woman in the 
best sense of that elastic term. All in all, this life and this 
character are profitable to study, to emulate, and to live. 


No more intelligent and all-around useful member of 
the General Board of the Y. L. M. I. A. is now in position 
than the subject of this sketch Mrs. Estelle Neff Caldwell. 
Modest to a fault, dignified without pride, kind without 
effusion, generous without lavishness, well-informed without 
pedantry, and herself a bit of imprisoned sunshine in a body 
which has known the discipline of suffering" since she was a 
child this young- matron is one of the best types of friend, 
wife, mother, Mutual worker and Saint this Church has pro- 
duced. She was born on a farm fifteen miles south of Salt 
Lake City. Her father died when she was eleven years old, 
and the widowed mother removed to Nephi, where Estelle 
received her common school education. She was an ambi- 
tious girl and her mother, being of the same turn of mind, 
was glad to help her daugfhter to attend the Brigham Young- 
Academy at Provo. Few mothers with a large family have 
made a sunnier record on life's page than that made by 

244 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Estelle's mother. She kept boarders by the dozen, cooking-, 
scrubbing and washing', with a smile in her eye and laug"h- 
ter on her lips for every difficult day and hour. Her chil- 
dren have now risen up to do her honor and she still smiles 
in the face of life and wins back from every circumstance 


some gleams of joy and blessedness. Such mothers and such 
daughters make life and the Gospel worthy of all praise. 

Estelle graduated in the locally famous class of 1897, 
and at the head of her class, too, being- class historian. It 
was at the close of this four-year course in school that Mrs . 
Gates propounded the query to Estelle Neff which was an- 


swered in the affirmative, and which has meant so much to 
the whole after life of the Journal and of the girl herself: 
" Would you be willing to venture your future in an attempt 
to establish the Young Woman' s fournal on a sound business 
basis, with only dim prospects of success ahead, and the 
road strewn with plenty of big- discouragements?" The an- 
swer took Miss Neff at once to Salt Lake City, anji here in 
the old Constitution building, she went to work with Mrs. 
Gates in the Journal office to begin the experiment which 
ended so happily for all concerned. Miss Neff worked ex- 
actly eight years in the business department of the Journal. 
In that time she was general business manager, scribe, 
assistant to the editor, counselor-at large, and comforter to 
any who sought her advice, and if any man or woman found 
her wanting in any good or beautiful essential, the historian 
has never met that individual. While living in the Four- 
teenth ward, she was chosen by Mrs. Ruth M. Fox as a 
counselor in the ward M. I. Association. Miss Neff acted 
as vSunday School teacher from her very early years. When 
the Bureau of Information was organized in 1902, she was 
called as one of the workers and labored there until her mar- 
riage. She was married June 30, 1905, to Richard Elmer 
Caldwell, a bright young civil and mining engineer. 

Mrs. Neff Caldwell was chosen as an aid to the General 
Board in October, 1902. Her trained intellect has been well 
used in her present position. Her education, begun in her 
mother's sunny home, carried forward in the B. Y. U. at 
Provo, still advanced in the business affairs of the fournal, 
and then crystallized in the wide and noble sphere of wife and 
mother, has made her the admirable woman that she is. 
Married with little knowledge of home labors, she set her 
intelligence to the problems before her, and the results have 
again proved that one can always make a silken purse if 
given the pure silken thread for a foundation. Today she 
is the proud mother of three beautiful and vigorous children. 
One son and two daughters make her life a song of praise 
and peace. She is now acting upon the fournal committee 
and enjoys thoroughly that slight revival of her old-time 
public activities. Yet has she learned the graciousness and 
blessedness of the perfect home life, and her voice is ever 
raised in glorification of wifehood and motherhood. 



The General Board meetings. Standing committees. Temporary 
committees. Reports by General Board members. 

TN the conduct of any business which involves diversified 
-- interests, the necessity for confiding each specialized in- 
terest to a small group of workers is soon felt. To require 
twenty people to consider the details of each branch of the 
labor involved in carrying on a great organization or business 
is a waste of time and vital force; precious hours are frittered 
away in useless discussion of trivial points usually the most 
trivial- and decisions are hard to reach. 

The local Y. L. M. I. A. boards which are small and few 
in number, with practically one line of work to follow, have 
never known the necessity for a separation of their officers into 
various committees as have the stake boards and the General 
Board. The need was felt first by the General Board, and 
that need grew naturally out of the various activities which 
were planned for the local organizations. The conduct and 
supervision of a magazine, the organization of ward and 
traveling libraries, the selection" and preparation of Guide 
lessons, the detailed labor attendant upon conference and 
convention dates, topics and circulars, all these with various 
temporary and passing questions, required much time, labor 
and consideration. 

In the beginning of their organized existence all such 
questions were brought into the sessions of the entire board. 
President Elmina S. Taylor and her counselors would give 
some preliminary thought to such problems, but they were 
usually brought before the Board for discussion and settle- 


ment. The Board meetings, held at first irregularly, then 
quarterly, then, for four years (1894-1898) monthly, were 
found entirely inadequate for the labor involved. Accord- 
ingly, action was taken July 5, 1898, to make the meetings 
semi-monthly, and in the spring of 1903 they were made 
weekly. Until after President Taylor's death in December, 
1905, these regular General Board meetings were held in' the 
dear old parlor of her home, 158 west Third South street, 
Salt Lake City, Utah.- 

How many glorious meetings have been held in that 
room, and how redolent of sacred memories is that place, for 
all the members of Sister Taylor's Board! The piano, the 
pictures, the quaint parlor chairs, the green shutters at the 
windows, all were dear and desirable to the favored women 
who gathered beneath that hospitable roof. It may have 
been, as our president used to say, that "her girls" left a 
blessing behind them; but certain it is that they carried one 




away from the holy presence of that noble woman. As long- 
as life shall last, the memory of those meetings, that cheery 
home, and that gracious lady will be treasured as one of their 
priceless gifts, by those who gathered there. 


During- those formative years much history was making 
for the Mutual Improvement Associations. Among- the young- 
women of the Church there was felt the vivid awakening- 
touch of the Church school training. Girls from every part 
of the Church from Canada to Mexico, came eagerly down 
to the famous Brigham Young Academy, now University, at 
Provo, the parent Church school, or to others of the rapidly 
increasing colleges and high schools of both Church and 
State. The graded work done in the Church institutions, the 
splendid theological organization originated by the master- 
mind of Karl G. Maeser, the impetus towards a combined in- 
tellectual and spiritual training was felt strongly by the youth 


of Zion. Its influence, with the other quickening- forces of 
our modern "strenuous" life combined to fashion into com- 
parative perfection the mechanism and conduct of both the 
young- men and young- women of our Mutual Improvement 

The first active committee work done in the General 
Board was that important phase of Mutual Improvement work, 
Guide lessons. Projected and prepared at first by one mem- 
ber Mrs. Gates the task of discussion and revision was 
found too cumbersome in its detailed demands upon the 
whole Board. Accordingly, a Guide committee was orgfan- 
ized, and many of the Board members have served in 
this exacting: calling-. Studies were to be selected with a 
thought to the varied conditions of the girls some in strug-- 
gling pioneer conditions, others located in towns and cities, 
with access to public libraries and to literary and theological 
courses in Church or State schools and colleges. The Guide 
committee itself now strug-gles with these problems and 
reaches a tentative conclusion, while the results are brought 
into the full session of the Board there to submit very often to 
lively discussion and substantial revision. Ag-ain and ag:ain 
the report is referred back to the committee, for the work is 
far-reaching and important. When finally approved and 
printed, few who read them realize the amount of time and 
labor their preparation has involved. 

The organization and labors of the Journal- committee 
have been spoken of in a previous chapter. No one should 
think these labors light. All criticism si Journal articles and 
methods necessarily finds its way to their ears. There are 
doubtful articles to consider, literary aspirants to encourage, 
or dismay. The steady policy of giving first place to local 
talent involves more than one problem, while financial ques- 
tions are, like the poor, ever with them. 

The traveling library movement, which had become very 

250 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

popular in the women's clubs throughout the country, soon 
found its way to Utah. The proposition came before the 
Board, introduced first by Mrs. Ruth M. Fox, that traveling 
libraries should be organized throughout the wards and 
stakes, and at length the Board, December 10th, 1898, 
passed upon the question favorably. These traveling libraries 
were not in any way to conflict with the regular stationary 
libraries owned and managed by the various ward associ- 
ations; but the stake officers were to purchase some of the 
best books, and these were to be boxed in sets by the stake 
officials and sent around to the various ward associations. 
The boxes were to be left for a stated time in a ward, then 
to be sent on to the next ward. It was hoped that the fact 
that there was a set time in which to read the books, would 
help to increase the interest of the girls. This has proved 
to be the case. Today there are over 4,000 books gathered 
by the stakes into traveling libraries and over 20,600 in the 
local libraries. These traveling library books are divided up 
into small lots, for convenient distribution. The time for 
exchange of sets is generally at the stake conference held 
four times a year. 

The necessity of wise selection and supervision over the 
reading matter supplied the pliable minds of girls fore- 
shadowed the formation of a library committee in both gen- 
eral and stake boards; for the work of establishing the 
libraries is but one phase of the work required of this stand- 
ing committee. Organized December 19th, 1898, with Mrs. 
Ruth M. Fox as chairman, this committee soon faced the 
problem of selection and purchase of the required books. 
This led to long printed lists in the journal of proper books 
from which the libraries could choose. Miss Sarah Edding- 
ton, who became chairman in January, 1908, has undertaken 
and carried through a detailed supervision of all ward and 
stake libraries. Getting into direct communication with 


ward librarians, the general committee have, by a discreet 
policy of selection and elimination, brought this feature of 
the work up to a high standard. They have given an excel- 
lent variety, including works on history, biography, man- 
ners and morals, poetry, travel, nature, science and fiction. 
In 1910 the lists of books recommended in previous years 
were collected and published, together with instructions to 
librarians in regard to raising funds, selecting and purchas- 
ing books and other valuable information; these were issued 
in the form of a catalogue, being distributed free to stake and 
local librarians. 

One of the most important committees organized in the 
General Board is that on conventions. Like most if not all 
the standing committees, the personnel of this committee is 
changed every year or two, the Board being sufficiently large 
to permit it the work and the women receiving benefit from 
such change. This committee has charge of convention dates, 
plans and circulars. It meets with a like committee from the 
Young Men's Associations to appoint dates for the fall con- 
ventions. In addition, a circular is prepared, dealing with 
the topics to be treated and the modes of procedure. The 
June conference committee, as might be supposed, is divided 
into sub-coiijmittees on transportation, program, amusement 
and refreshment. 

A temporary committee, of very long standing, was or- 
ganized December 4th, 1899, called the history committee. 
At first only a pamphlet was to be written, then a history, to 
which was subsequently added the idea of biographical 
sketches and stake histories with illustrations. Thus grew 
into being the published story of the Young Ladies' Mutual 
Improvement Association. 

A committee organized in January, 1909, is one for 
which a suitable name has not been found. Of this com- 
mittee Mrs. Julia M. Brixen makes a most efficient and capa- 

252 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

ble chairman. Its duties are to look after girls who do not 
have proper home environment, and to help safe-guard the 
interests of working girls. 

Many temporary committees are formed to attend to the 
details of various activities, such as the committee on build- 
ing, referred to in another chapter; and the committee on fur- 
nishing the rooms now used by the Y. L. M. I. A. 

One more important and beautiful interest which con- 
cerns all alike is entrusted to the general music director and 
organist. They have a general oversight over the music 
used in the associations, and often assist ward music direc- 
tors in the choice and purchase of suitable glees, trios and 
solos. They have charge of the music in the June confer- 
ences in our departmental work, and supply half the music 
for the general assemblies. 

A minor detail of the work done by the General Board 
is contained in the report of the varying conditions found by 
its various members in their visits throughout the country. 
On the return of such member, she hands in a report on a 
printed form furnished her by the secretary. A compre- 
hensive view of each stake is thus furnished the Board, es- 
pecially as this report is supplemented by oral statements of 
more or less importance. In this way President Tingey and 
her Board keep in complete touch with every local and stake 
organization in the Church. Here again is a segment of the 
delicate machinery which ties together, one of the strongest 
and most united organizations of women in this world. 

The work done by the members of the General Board 
is duplicated, in varied measure, by stake and ward boards 
of the associations. Wards are not robbed of their individ- 
uality; they may vary their methods and studies, introduce 
fresh ideas, institute new plans. Indeed this is often done. 
Visiting General Board members come home from conference 
or convention with vivid seed-thoughts gathered from stake 


and ward sources. The summer time, unprogrammed and 
entirely free, is a fruitful ground in which the local officers 
may plant new ideas and devise up-to-date studies to keep 
the girls together and to meet local conditions. 

Thus the Mutual Improvement lines are broadened and 
the communal lives of the girls enriched. Each ward, each 
stake, has an individuality of its own; no two are alike. But 
like the varied leaves on the fig-tree, each bears on its broad 
surface the bright impress of a mutual purpose, a Mutual 
Improvement . 



The subject of this sketch was born in Cheltenham, Eng- 
land, May 31st, 1848. Her parents were both in the Church, 
and when she was but two years of age they emigrated to 
Utah, bringing her, their only child, with them. They were 
both of gentle breeding and the trials of pioneer life were 
very severe to them. The mother's natural taste and refine- 
ment was supplemented by a very shrewd ability to create 
and utilize opportunities; and the girl Nellie was given every 
educational advantage. Although she was very diffident, 
her queenly presence commanded instant respect and ad- 
miration. She was only sixteen years of age when her par- 
ents received a note from President Brigham Young saying: 

11 Dear Brother arid Sister Colebrook: 

"Would you allow your daughter Nellie to act upon the 
stage? It would very much please me. 

"Your Brother, 


How had he, the President of the Church, divined all 
the secret aspirations and ambitions of that reserved and shy 
soul? Who had heard from the sensitive lips one word of all 
that had burned in her heart? To Nellie these questions al- 
ways remain unanswered. But she was a bubble upon the 
bosom of her own swirling emotions for days after that magic 



missive was received. Her parents consented for their 
cherished daughter to go upon the wonderful pioneer stage 
of the wonderful pioneer Salt Lake Theater; for the path of 

the histrionic aspir- 
ant was as guarded 
on that family stage 
as in any other 
walk of life the 
corruption and vice 
of stage life of the 
world had not crept 
in. The perform- 
ances were as much 
a part of the social 
life of the pioneers, 
as were their balls 
or concerts. The- 
aters were opened 
and closed with 
prayer, and no im- 
moral play was 
permitted to ap- 

And so Nellie 
Colebrook became 
a part of that 
unique life. She 
appeared with all 
the celebrities who 
remained for a 
time in Zion Mc- 
Cul lough, Edwin 
NELLIE c. TAYLOR. Adams, Paunce- 

fort, the Irwins, Mme. Schiller, Julia Dean Hayne, Annette 
Ince, and Ben De Bar. She was leading lady during the sixties; 
and was an actress to be proud of. McCullough offered her 
$500 a night and the costumes furnished, if the would play 
with him as his leading lady. She was naturally tempted by 
this munificent offer; but the wise and good man, Brigham 
Young, who had called her to the stage, gave her a long af- 
ternoon counsel, and she decided to remain at home. After 


her marriage to Bishop George H. Taylor, she left the stage, 
never to return. 

For more than a quarter of a century, she was identified 
with Mutual Improvement work. She served as president 
of the Fourteenth ward Y. L. M. I. A. for five years, when 
she was appointed second counselor to Mary A. Freeze of the 
Salt Lake stake board, holding that position for fourteen 
years. On the call of President Freeze to the General Board, 
Nellie was made president of the stake. When the Salt Lake 
stake was divided, she herself was called to a place on the 
General Board, to act as an aid. She was one of the most 
popular members of the General Board, possessing a wonder- 
ful power to reach the hearts of the girls with her inspired 
appeals, and she traveled much in the pursuit of her calling 
in the Mutuals. 

Her health was poor in later years, and in 1908 she took 
a trip to England, where her younger son was laboring as a 
missionary, to secure genealogy ai*d in the hope that her 
physical condition would be improved. Returning in the 
best of spirits and much restored in health, she at once re- 
sumed her work on the General Board. She had enjoyed 
her labors in England, as an unofficial missionary, and was 
the more ready to plunge into her Mutual work on her re- 
turn. But there was a wider sphere, a longer mission, a 
greater and far more blissful duty awaiting her. She was 
wanted in the world of spirits. She was taken violently ill 
in the latter part of March with paralysis of the brain, and 
after seven days of stupor, she passed peacefully away, 
watched over by her devoted son and loving friends. With 
sweetness and peace she lived out her life; in peace and mer- 
ciful unconsciousness she fell asleep. "How beautiful upon 
the mountains are the feet of them that bringeth good tid- 
ings, that publisheth peace!" 


It is an encouraging thing for a girl reared in the country 
to find that many of our brightest and best workers in the 
ranks of the Mutual Improvement Associations have been 
born and educated, or partially so, in small country villages. 
This was the case with Mrs. Emily Caldwell Adams. She 
was born at St. Johns, Rush Valley, Tooele county, Utah. 

256 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Her parentvS moved to Tooele City when she was fourteen 
years of age, and here she rapidly absorbed what education 
and advancement the larger town had to offer. She was 
chosen, when seventeen years of age, to be counselor in the 
Y. L. M. I. A. to Miss Maggie Heron of Tooele. At the 


death of Sister Heron, she was appointed president of the 
association. Miss Caldwell resigned from this position to 
go to Logan and attend the Brigham Young College in that 
place. The Caldwell family moved to Salt Lake City in 
1892 to secure better educational advantages for their chil- 


dren, and Emily at once entered the University of Utah. She 
was also set to work in the Mutuals, being- chosen as coun- 
selor to Nellie Morris, in the Fifteenth ward association. 
Later, she was chosen by Sister Mary A. Freeze, as an aid 
in the Salt Lake stake board. When President Freeze was 
called as aid in the General Board, Miss Caldwell was ap- 
pointed to act as second counselor to President Nellie C. 
Taylor, in the Salt Lake stake presidency of the Mutual Im- 
provement associations. In the division of the stakes, in 
1904, she was chosen by Sister Elmina S. Taylor to act on 
the General Board as an aid. In June, 1899, she was mar- 
ried to Thomas Adams, a rising" young 1 lawyer. He was 
also country born and reared, and was a substantial member 
of the legal profession, and an honor to the Church and 
Kingdom of God. Six years after their marriage, Mrs. 
Adams was left a widow, with an only son, four years old. 
Ever since her entrance into the Board, Mrs. Adams has 
been an indefatigable worker, both in traveling- and on com- 
mittees. She is an excellent speaker, and has a clear mind 
and a comprehensive grasp of every subject in which she 
may be interested. In no better way could her sweet faith 
and trust in God and His providences be demonstrated than 
in the womanly courage and patience with which she has 
faced life since her great trial. One highly commendable 
feature of her strong character was shown in the firm refusal 
to shroud herself in widow's weeds. Only the tender sorrow 
in eyes and mouth have betrayed the suffering which she has 
so sacredly guarded. Her life and character furnish a true 
model for the young daughters of Zion to emulate. 


Too often modest worth is left to labor in obscurity. 
However much modesty and humility may be admired in the 
abstract, the aggressive person is apt to be set in the front 
ranks. But, fortunately, the common voice of humanity 
demands that leaders shall possess something besides 
aggressiveness. There must be real, not superficial, qualities 
of superiority, else the proud courage is found to be empty 
pretense, and the world seeks a better leader, a wiser 
voice. When, however, gifts of intellect are united with 




genuine diffidence and humility, the few will discover the 
rare combination, and they will hasten to make their discov- 
ery known to the public. This has been the case with the 
subject of this sketch. 

The mother of Mary Connelly was born in England, and 

made the usual 
sacrifice of all 
her family asso- 
c i a t i o n s and 
friends to join 
her fortunes 
with the "Mor- 
mons." Mary 
was born Feb. 
19, 1876, in Salt 
Lake City. She 
was a thorough 
student and was 
deeply interest- 
ed in her work. 
She graduated 
from the U. of 
U., in the Nor- 
mal course, 
when she was 
but eighteen 
years of age, 
and, four years 
later, took out 
a degree in the 
college course. 
Since that time, 
Mary has taught 
school, first in 
the district 

schools of the city, and later in the Salt Lake high school. 
Her nature is too deep and full to spend itself on the 
surface of life's stream. When old enough Mary entered the 
Y. L. M. I. A., and served for a time as secretary, later as 
counselor and then as president of the Twenty- First ward 
association, Salt Lake City. On the division of the ward she 



was made president of the Y. L. M. I. A. of the new Twen- 
ty-Seventh ward. Only a few months later, President Nellie 
C. Taylor called her to the position of aid on the Salt Lake 
stake board, and shortly after, she was asked to act on the 
General Board, where she has since labored diligently in her 
position as aid. Miss Connelly is now editor of the Young 
Womarf s Journal. 

Those who meet this modest, quiet young" woman for 
the first time, do not guess at the depth of her experiences, 
nor the strong current of her soul. She carries to every 
darkened room and to every saddened heart of her acquaint- 
ance the sweet flowers of earth, and those sweeter blos- 
soms of tender love and sympathy , that never bloom till the 
heart has been itself wrung with secret sacrifice and purified 
by silent suffering. She is a convincing speaker, and 
possesses the training and capacity to do much splendid work 
for the cause of truth. 


Elen Wallace possesses many qualifications which go to 
make up leadership. If it were not for her shrinking 
modesty, she might attain eminence. However, her talents 
may put her where her lack of aggressiveness might never 
find her. She is a sister to Mrs. Rose Wallace Bennett 
and has the same artistic temperament, and the same con- 
vincing testimony of the truth. After leaving the district 
school Miss Wallace took a course in theL. D. S. University, 
and has since taken special studies in the University of 
Utah. This has been supplemented by an extensive course 
of private reading and the advantages and culture of 
foreign travel. 

She began work in the Mutuals at a very early age, act- 
ing first in the position of second counselor and later as 
first counselor in the Y. L. M. I. A. of the Seventh ward, 
Salt Lake City. She was an aid on the Salt Lake stake 
board, for one year, prior to the division of the stakes in 
1904, and when that board was disbanded through the divi- 
sion of the stakes, was appointed by President Elmina S. 
Taylor to a position on the General Board to act as aid. 
Here she has labored with zeal and quiet enthusiasm, and 

260 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 


although her voice may not often be heard in the long- and 
busy councils, when she does speak, her words are tempered 
with wisdom. In January, 1905, she was chosen to act as 
associate editor of the Young Woman's Journal, and gave 


great help and skilled assistance in this position. She has 
since worked on the journal, Traveling Library, and many 
special committees, doing most effective work, as her ability 
enables her to act in many diverse lines. Miss Wallace has 
traveled extensively in the interest of the Board. She has 
a charming personality and is very popular wherever she is 


Her Character. Her Death. The Funeral Services. 

THE great difference between the religion of the ancient 
Hindoos and Christianity, is the difference in the re- 
lation of the individual to the whole. The subtle force of the 
East India dogma lies in its power to take the soul half way 
on the high road to heaven. The message of both Brahma 
and Buddha contained the first principle of true religion; that 
is, the devotion of the individual to the whole; the giving up 
of the self and selfish will to the will of a Higher Power, but 
the second part of that eternal principle of progress is lost to 
the East Indians, or they have long since perverted its mean- 
ing. The end in the Hindoo religion is a final absorbtion of 
human souls into the divine Nirvana. All individualities 
lose their identity in this principle or essence. Nirvana 
might be described as ethereal light and peaceful radiance. 

The teaching of the Savior was the same as that of Buddha 
so far as the first part of the principle is concerned, namely 
that of the giving up of the individual will to a Higher Will; 
this is the first vital step to be taken by the eager proselyte 
of eternal truth. But Jesus taught that this voluntary sub- 
mersion of the human into the divine will resulted not in any 
loss of identity, but in a final glorification of the individual. 
The follower of Jesus gave his soul in order to regain it, still 
as an individual soul, in its purified and exalted form; it was 
not to be absorbed into a principle or spiritual mass, but to 
come forth as Jesus Himself did, with a celestialized body, 
with which to eat and drink, and with all the parts of the 
human body purified and exalted. 

There is one thought which comes frequently to the 
student of the lives of the great men and women who have 

262 HISTORY OF 1 HE Y. L. M. I. A. 

made the history of this people. It is said that Joseph Smith 
and Brig-ham Young performed such and such labors; but it 
is also true that the glory should not be ascribed to them, 
except as they were the instruments of the Lord. It is the 
Savior who has done this and that work. Again, the Savior 
Himself was quick to acknowledge that He came not to do 
His work, but the work of His Father. 

The consideration of the character and life work of 
Elmina S. Taylor, the details of her death, and the attendant 
impressive ceremonies, are presented in this chapter, not so 
much because of her own greatness, great as she was, nor 
because of the reverent love accorded to her by all her asso- 
ciates; but rather for the lessons taught, and the ideals which 
will be thus awakened within the hearts of the daughters of 
Zion. No one was so ready as she to sink her individuality 
in the measure of that whole work; for this reason, if no other, 
posterity will be anxious to fathom the causes which made her 
life what it was, and her reward what it will be. If we would 
attain to her fullness, we must study her life and follow her 
example. Thus we might study the life and work of any true 
Saint, and through that inquiry learn perhaps as much of the 
character and purposes of the Lord who inspired the individ- 
ual as of the personality of the subject of our study. 

The most striking characteristic of Elmina S. Taylor was 
her reserved modesty. This amounted almost to a fault, for 
it reacted at times upon her life; but it was a trait, not an in- 
tegral part of her character. When aroused or assailed, or 
when personally attacked for principle, she lost that shrink- 
ing reserve, and stood forth in defense of herself as an expo- 
nent of a part of God's work upon earth. So now, we would 
call forth the character and life of our departed leader, clothed 
in the record of her deeds and accomplishments, that we may 
study through them the purposes and results of a Divine will 
made manifest in the history of the Mutual Improvement 


The contribution of Elmina S. Taylor to the life and 
success of the Mutual Improvement work among the girls 
was amazingly great. She imparted dignity to every cord 
and sinew, nerve and tissue of the Mutual body. No hamlet 
so remote, no girl so distant, that the force and power of the 
leader was not felt directly or indirectly. With that dignity 
of spirit came a certain healthy formality of procedure, a 
quiet sobriety of demeanor, and a careful recognition of all 
the proprieties. 

Sister Taylor was the soul of frugality; not the parsi- 
monious closeness that sometimes masquerades under that 
name, but she had a perfect knowledge of her resources and 
she made a consistent and prudent distribution of such stores 
and means as came under her care. She was not given to 
parading her powers in this direction, nor the resources of 
the association she represented, any more than she was of an- 
nouncing from the housetops the extent of her private char- 
ities and incomes; but neither had she the least disposition to 
conceal any information desired, wherever such a wish was 
legitimate and proper. 

Her nature was deep, rather than broad, so that the depth 
of love which surged through her for "my girls," as she al- 
ways lovingly called them, was rather an expression of her 
intimate personal relation with the particular girls enrolled 
under the banner of Mutual Improvement, than it was any 
natural outpouring towards all humanity. This close, indi- 
vidual relationship brought its own reward in the ardent de- 
votion which it inspired in every girl who joined the associ- 
ation, and, therefore, partook of the silent but forceful spirit- 
ual influence of the leader. 

The characteristic which made her long administration 
so pre-eminently successful, washer splendid executive abil- 
ity, combined with a certain large wisdom, which never 
allowed her to be partial or selfish. She was a ' 'natural born 
leader," as the phrase goes among us; she was a fine reader of 

264 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

character, and had the gift which generally accompanies that 
trait the gift of discernment. She was so discreet that she 
could enjoy the confidence of her immediate associates, with- 
out betraying one to the other. She was endowed with the 
power and wisdom to command; this was ever present with 
her, even upon her dying couch the word spoken from her 
lips must needs be obeyed, although she rarely spoke in any- 
thing but gentle tones. How subtle, and yet how apparent 
is this gift of leadership; it has many component parts, and 
rarely do they all unite in one person, as was the case with 
Sister Taylor, and Sister Eliza R. Snow. 

The foundation of every true character must be integrity; 
that old-fashioned term, which means so much, and which 
can rarely be acquired. President Joseph F. Smith dwelt 
upon this trait of Sister Taylor's character, when speaking at 
her funeral. It was a deep-sounding note which ran from 
her out to every soul marshaled under her leadership. 
Genuine, true, wise and clear-sighted this is what she was, 
pre-eminentlv. To know the right and to do it, what more 
can any man or woman do! This she did, come life, come 

She made her whole-souled contributions to the public 
good, undertaken ever reluctantly, but carried forth faith- 
fully to the day of her death. If one would ask what was 
the character of the Mutual Improvement Associations for 
girls during the first third of a century, let him study the 
lives and characters of the two women, Eliza R. Snow and 
Elmina S. Taylor, who led them during that period. It is a 
solemn thought that the one who stands at the head of a 
great movement or community, imparts, whether he will or 
not, much the same character to his people, his work, and his 
time, that he himself possesses. For his strength, he will 
give strength; for his weakness, he will impart weakness. 
God will overrule it all, but the individual will dominate the 
whole, as the influence of the whole will determine the nature 


of the individual. When the wicked rule, the people not 
only mourn, but they deteriorate; and so, likewise, when the 
righteous govern, the people rejoice, and are elevated and 
stimulated to good works. 

Come we now to a consideration of those details which 
preceded and enveloped the closing life-movements of the 
great woman whose character meant so much to the cause of 
Mutual Improvement. Peacefully she had lived, peacefully 
she died. She had loved and served, and at her death all 
Israel mourned. Like Deborah of old, her victories and her 
honors were divided among the men and the women who 
labored and fought side by side with her. Had she sung a 
song of praise to God, she would have marshaled, as did the 
prophetess, her counselors and her scribes, her aids and her 
leaders of hosts, to stand forth and receive each her full 
measure of praise and good report. And she too would have 
characterized herself, first and always, as "a mother in 
Israel!" Then, like Deborah, she would have called upon 
the priesthood her Barak as the crowning feature of her 
song, to arise and bear off his honors with due meed of 
praise and glory. Like Deborah, she would have closed her 
song, giving forever to God the Father and His Son Jesus 
Christ, all honor and dominion, and this tribute would em- 
body her life work, with a note of triumphant praise to every 
assisting power, forgetting and losing herself in the passion 
of gratitude which her victory had inspired. 

The health of Sister Taylor was very uncertain for sev- 
eral years prior to her death. She had a paralysis of the 
throat, which prevented her from swallowing. This was the 
disease which caused the death of the famous writer, George 
Eliot. Sister Taylor grew weaker and weaker, for she found 
it impossible at the last to swallow even liquids; indeed, that 
was often harder to do than to swallow a little solid food. 
Her heart was also affected, and she had many sinking spells. 
But her indomitable spirit carried her over pangs which 

266 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

would have slain weaker souls. She was nursed and watched 
over by her husband and her only daughter Mae, between 
whom and the mother there existed a reverent devotion, 
rarely seen even in an only daughter and her mother. 

The weekly meetings of the General Board were held in 
the dear old parlor till the last; and' though Sister Taylor was 
not always strong enough to sit up during the entire session, 
she would lie on the couch, quietly listening to the discus- 
sions and suggestions. But if any difficulty or possible dis- 
sension arose, or a decision was doubtful, she would arouse, 
and with uplifted head and in ringing tones pour forth elo- 
quent words of inspiration until every one present would ac- 
knowledge that God was with Sister Elmina S. Taylor. 

In the late fall of 1904, the strong spirit began to lose its 
hold on the frail body. Though her associates saw she was 
gradually growing weaker, few realized that the end was so 
near. She arose every day, was dressed and walked to a 
couch in the room adjoining her bedroom. Her cough ^rew 
gradually worse, though she rested well at night. Monday 
evening she seemed unusually well, and sat up half an hour 
reading the paper. But in the night she grew worse, and in 
the early morning the household was called. The change 
had come. At eleven-fifteen, Tuesday morning, December 
six, nineteen hundred four, she merely ceased to breathe. 
There was no struggle, no spasm of pain; only the spirit for- 
sook its mortal tenement and the body was at rest. 

Our high priestess was dead, but so beautiful was 
her life, and so peaceful was her death, that a chastened, 
glorified calm rested everywhere about her. Those who had 
known her, rejoiced and were glad because of the fullness of 
her life and its infinite meaning; even those who knew her 
not, were touched by the largeness of her labors as mani- 
fested in the devotion of her associates. 

The funeral was typical of her, and of her religion. The 
story of that service demands a place in history, both because 


of what it was and what it meant. The members of her own 
Board were called together, and the funeral arrangements 
were perfected under the efficient leadership of her first 
counselor, Sister Maria Y. Don gall. The exquisitely beau- 
tiful clothing, all of fine white linen, as is the custom among 
us, was fashioned by the reverent fingers of the women who 
had labored with her so closely and intimately. With an 
exact appreciation of simplicity, economy and justice, she 
had in life deprecated the extremes to which the custom of 
sending floral tributes to the dead had been carried by some 
of our people; but even she would have accepted gladly the 
munificent outpouring of flowers which came spontaneously 
from far and near. The stricken love of all her associates 
could find expression in no better way than to crowd her 
bier with floral tokens of respect and reverence. 

The General Board of the young men, with President 
Joseph F. Smith at the head, united with the young women 
to carry forward the public arrangements for the funeral. 

The services were held in the Assembly Hall. The 
hall was decorated profusely with white bunting and potted 
palms, with smilax drooping in the folds of the white drap- 
ery. Ferns and great vases of white chrysanthemums gar- 
nished the pulpits. The seating of the vast auditorium was 
under the charge of white-robed girls, and the choir chairs 
were filled with lovely girl singers, dressed in spotless white. 
The music was under the charge of Sister Alice C. Tudden- 
ham, and Sister Lizzie Thomas presided at the organ. 

The General Board of the Young Ladies assembled at 
the Taylor home and walked, with other close friends, behind 
the hearse to the hall. The services were presided over by 
President Joseph F. Smith, and the pulpits were filled with 
the leaders of the various organizations. The last two histor- 
ical women living at that date, Bathsheba W. Smith and 
Emmeline B. Wells, occupied seats in the upper pulpit, and 
both spoke a few words of consolation and appreciation. It 

268 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

was an impressive sight to the thoughtful, that the only 
woman who was present at the original organization except 
the members of President Young's household, Mrs. Bathsheba 
W. Smith, should help to lay away the first general president 
of that association, after thirty-five years of active M. I. A. 
history had been made. 

The pulpits and the casket were enshrined with the many 
floral tributes sent from organizations from near and distant 
stakes and from personal friends. But the loveliest tribute 
of all was that which was designed to represent every girl in 
Zion: a great blanket of green enriched by fifty-six tea roses 
to represent the stake associations; and in the center the 
words, "From Your Girls," wrought out in pure white nar- 
cissus flowers. This completely covered the casket. As 
each member of the General Board passed on her way to her 
seat in the pulpit, she dropped a single American Beauty 
rose on the blanket as her own slight offering of love. 

When the tuneful voices of the white-robed choir-girls 
arose in the first hymn, all hearts were moved with sorrow 
and with praise. "Thou dost not weep to weep alone," sang 
the silver-throated girls, and the gentle melody stilled rather 
than augmented every emotion of distress. 

The opening prayer was eloquently offered by Elder 
John Henry Smith. The second hymn was that one of 
matchless sentiment by Eliza R. Snow, 

"O, my Father, Thou that dwellest, 
In that high and glorious place." 

The speakers of the occasion were surely inspired. Rare- 
ly have so many spontaneous tributes and eloquent phrases 
fallen from the lips of our leaders; but space will not permit 
their repetition. The speakers were, President John R. 
Winder, Counselor Maria Y. Dougall, Elder J. Golden Kim- 
ball, President Bathsheba W. Smith, in behalf of the Relief 
Society; Sister Susa Young Gates, Sister May Anderson, 


representing the Primary Association; Patriarch John Smith, 
vSister Emmeline B. Wells, Sister Ruth M. Fox, and the 
closing was an eloquent discourse from the lips of President 
Joseph F. Smith. His remarks are so replete with wisdom 
that they will be given here: 

After reading a few verses from the first and second 
chapters of I John, he said: . 

I do not wish to detain the congregation. I wish to say 
that I indorse, without recourse, all that I have heard said 
today respecting the character, life, labors, virtues, wisdom, 
judgment and intelligence of our sister, Elmina S. Taylor. 
Pardon me if I make such a broad expression, but I will say 
that most people of my acquaintance and I presume it will 
apply generally that most people walk very largely in a 
light that is borrowed, like the light of the moon borrowed 
from the sun. I have known a few men and women in the 
world who do not seek borrowed light, for the light is in 
them and they walk in the light, and they have fellowship 
with Jesus Christ and with their associates, with the Church, 
and with the Kingdom of God in the earth, and the blood of 
Jesus Christ hath indeed cleansed them from all sin. I will 
give it as an opinion which I have held many years, because 
of my connection with these Mutual Improvement Associa- 
tions and with Sister Taylor, that she was one of the few in 
the world who had the light within her, and who had the in- 
spiration and the intelligence that is born of truth and of the 
forgiveness of sins, of the cleansing blood of Jesus Christ, 
and she walked in it, and therefore she had power among her 
associates and her sisters. She was legitimately the head of 
the organization over which she was called to preside. She 
borrowed no influence from others. She bore her own in- 
fluence upon the minds of those with whom she was associat- 
ed. There came out of her soul the spirit of wisdom, coun- 
sel and judgment, and her mind was clear in regard to the 
truth; and she always spoke as one possessed of more than 
ordinary intelligence, which she really did possess. 

Now, it is not my custom to speak praise of our departed 
loved ones. I would rather dwell, if the time would permit 
me, and I had the opportunity to do it, upon the glorious 

270 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

future that awaits them, upon the certainty of eternal life 
which they have espoused, which they have won for them- 
selves. I would rather dwell upon the goodness and glory 
of God's message of life and salvation to the children of men. 
But I have felt to say these few words in indorsement of 
what has been said by our brethren and sisters with respect 
to Sister Taylor. It was said that she was a strong character, 
she had a strong personality. This is true. But the very 
strength of that character and personality was tempered and 
softened by the choicest spirit of kindness, of love, of mercy, 
and of charity that ever, in my judgment, adorned woman- 
kind; and while she possessed this strength of character and 
this strong personality, it was always bent in the direction of 
righteousness, in the direction of truth, for the uplifting of 
her associates. Herein is where she shone most brightly, 
because all her thoughts and all her energies were directed 
in the right channel and for the right cause. And she was 
singularly free from mistakes and from those little imperfec- 
tions or weaknesses, which are so often exhibited by fallen 
human nature. 

My brethren and sisters, we have lost a valuable soul 
from among us in the flesh. I sometimes marvel why it is, 
when these spirits are so few and so far between, that they 
should not, in the providence of God, be permitted to remain 
a little longer with us. She was not so old but that she might 
have lived for many, many years and continued her labor 
amongst us. But in God's providence the youth even, the 
brightest, sometimes, amongst us and the most faithful, the 
most diligent, those who seem to be qualified to accomplish 
the greatest good, are often permitted to go before; while 
those who need light, who borrow light, who are seeking 
light and intelligence and who are susceptible to it and are 
striving to absorb it in their souls that it may become a part 
of them, remain to struggle along with their imperfections 
and with the difficulties that they have to meet with in life, 
to do the best they can. And I come to the conclusion that 
God intends that we shall feel and know that it is not man, 
nor the arm of flesh, that we shall put our trust in; but that 
we shall depend upon Him, and put our trust in Him, though 
the world is opposed, and all the forces, it seems, of evil, are 
arrayed against the work of the Lord. 


One of the sisters remarked that if the world could see 
and know the virtue and the purity of life of such women 
as Sister Taylor and her associates in the Young Ladies' 
Mutual Improvement Association, it would seem that they 
would hold their tongues. This I fear is a mistake. I be- 
lieve that it is because the wicked see the virtues and see the 
purity of life, the honor and uprightness, the faith and fidelity 
of the daughters of Zion and of the faithful sons of Zion, that 
they are stirred up the more to bitterness, hatred and envy, 
as the wolf is stirred in his hunger and ravenous appetite 
against the innocent lamb. The more purity you have, the 
better you live, the nearer unto God, the more upright you 
are, the more the wicked will hate and persecute you, and say 
all manner of evil against you falsely; for so they did against 
Him who was without sin or blemish, for it was against Him 
who was purer than all and better than all, who had more in- 
telligence than all others that ever lived in the flesh, they 
cried, "Let His blood be upon us and upon our children; 
crucify Him, put Him to death." And I say again, that the 
wicked in the world hate, and will continue to hate you as 
long as you continue to possess virtue, purity, honor and 
truth, until He comes whose right it is to reign in the earth 
as King of Kings and Lord of Lords, and shall execute judg- 
ment upon the wicked, and the ungodly shall be forced to 
bow the knee, and their blasphemous tongues shall be forced 
to confess that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God. 
Now, I think you will find this to be the truth. 

The Lord bless you. I will say to Bishop Taylor, God 
bless you, and help you to continue to be the man that you 
are; all good wives help their husbands to be good, that is, 
if there is any good in them. To him I say, the Lord 
bless you, comfort your heart, give you that strength that is 
needed to enable you to continue your labor as a shepherd in 
Israel and as a guide to the flock over which you preside as 
a bishop of the Church; and that you and yours may be 
blessed and filled with joy, satisfaction and the knowledge that 
you possess all the glorious privileges and rights that belong 
to her that has now gone before you, that you will meet her 
again and enjoy her society forever and ever in the mansion 
that is prepared for you, or will be prepared for you, when 
you shall be gathered into the Kingdom of our God. This is 

272 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

my prayer for you. Ever be true to the Gospel of life. And 
to the children I say, be true to the examples of your mother, 
walk and follow in her footsteps, for she was inded a true 
mother in Israel, and a wise counselor, a glorious, good wom- 
an. God bless her memory to all those who knew her, and 
may her fame and her name be handed down from genera- 
tion to generation by those who love God and who strive to 
keep His commandments, is my prayer in the name of Jesus, 

Elder Thomas Hull then read the following: 


By the Young Men 's Mutual Improvement Association. 

' 'Sister Elmina S. Taylor, president of the Young La- 
dies' Mutual Improvement Associations, having died at her 
home in Salt Lake City, December 6, 1904, at the age of 
seventy-four years, and after twenty-four years of faithful 
service as the supreme head of our companion organization, 
the Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement Associations: 

"It is resolved by the General Superintendence', for 
themselves and for the Young Men's Mutual Improvement 
Associations throughout the world: 

"That we express in unqualified terms our praise of the 
splendid organization of the young women of Zion brought 
up to its present perfection under the presidency of Sister 

"That we recognize in the vast labor which this achieve- 
ment has involved, the triumphant consecration of a noble 
life, whose whole soul with qualities of mind and heart 
peculiarly adapted to the duties of leadership was dedicated 
to this service; 

"That we sympathize deeply with the officers and mem- 
bers of the Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement Associations 
in the sorrow of their parting from their distinguished presi- 
dent, who had won completely their respect for her wisdom, 
and confidence in her executive judgment, and their un- 
feigned love; 

"That we commend the glorious example of her life in 
its unselfish devotion to the highest ideals of culture and im- 
provement, to the emulation of the young women of our people, 


and her memory to the reverence and honor of all who love 
righteousness and who delight in the happiness and well- 
being of their fellow men." 

The Young Ladies' chpir then sang the closing hymn: 
"Rest for the Weary Soul," and Apostle Rudger Clawson 
pronounced the benediction. 

At the cemetery the arrangements were no less beautiful 
though different from those at the Assembly Hall. The 
associations belonging to what was formerly known as the 
Salt Lake stake had lined the grave with a cloth of pure white 
thickly covered with fern and evergreen leaves. Into this 
beautiful receptacle the casket was lowered and the spot dedi- 
cated by President Nephi L. Morris of the Salt Lake stake. 

Silently her associates stepped forward, dropping their 
roses within the tomb and over all the white and green canopy 
was folded. No touch of the cold earth came near her, for 
she was literally buried beneath a bed of roses and the harsh 
sound of falling earth was deadened by the soft petals. The 
mound was made and over it was laid the beauteous blanket 
with its floral legend "From Your Girls." Other tributes 
from hearts just as warm were tenderly arranged, and all 
was completed. 

Thus closed the life and labors of Elmina S. Taylor. 
With that closing ended the first period of organized work 
among the young women of Zion, thirty-five years of active 
existence thirty-five years of preparation. Had the lessons 
been well taught, and well learned? Only eternity may answer 
these questions. We of mortality are so apt to measure life 
and character by visible results, not immortal souls; while 
God sees only the individual. The busy city, the crowded 
harbor, the ships upon a hundred seas and the smoke of in- 
dustry in a thousand valleys, these are our finite measures of 
success; while to the Creator, they are but children's play- 
houses in the sand. The beating hearts, the struggling hands, 


274 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

the developed power and the intelligence of the single soul, 
of these He makes His scales wherewith He weighs all of life, 
here and hereafter. Whether the house were log or marble, 
matters not in the final measurement. The story :>f the rise 
and fall of nations and individuals is the same yesterday, today 
and forever. Only one thing accumulates, and that is the 
individual comprehension of the infinite. All else is but tran- 
sitory and tributary to that immensity of single existence. 
Beneath all single expressions of the law lies the glorious 
fact that each single effort for righteousness makes definitely 
for the ultimate triumph of the immortal Good. And when 
superior souls fight the good fight and win the victor's crown, 
the warfare is made the easier and the better for every soul 
upon earth, and even for the hosts of heaven. 



Alice Calder was born in Salt Lake City, March 5, 1875. 
She is the daughter of William Calder. Her parents were of 
Scotch stock, her mother being of the famous McGregor clan. 
Alice possessed superior elocutionary gifts in addition to her 
musical powers, and almost from infancy was a prominent figure 
in all the ward entertainments. She loved music, and was made 
music conductor in the Twenty-First ward when a very young 
girl. She has considerable skill in conducting, and has 
trained many glee and chorus clubs in her ward associations . 
She has also worked in the ward Mutual as counselor and sec- 
retary and her love of literature is second only to her passion 
for music. Alice has received a good education, having at- 
tended the private school of that once welt known instructor 
of the young, Mrs. Camilla Cobb; she also attended the State 
University. She was made music director for the General 
Board in 1898. She was a member of the tabernacle choir for 
several years where she gained ideas in expression and con- 
ducting from Utah's popular choir leader, Evan Stephens. 

Since her marriage to William J. Tuddenham in 1900, 



Mrs. Tuddenham has necessarily been less active in public. 
She possesses a sunny, happy disposition, and wins the sad- 
dest and sorest soul to her side, if given the opportunity. 
Her natural love of domestic pleasures makes it difficult some- 
times to know where the line is to be drawn between public 
and private cares. But wherever she is, there will be sun- 
shine and music. 

Mrs. Tuddenham is the mother of four fine children, one 

boy and three little daugh- 
ters. She is a devoted mother 
and wife, and laughingly ad- 
mits that she is too engrossed 
in her happiness at home to 
venture very much into pub- 
lic life. Yet she retains her 
position on theGeneralBoard, 
and often comes into the 
weekly meeting to assist in 
every phase of the work done 
there. She is broad in her 
sympathies and full of sug- 
gestions on many subjects. 
She, with the two organists, 
i s now engaged in the 
preparation of a special song 
book of music by home au- 
thors and home musicians, for 
the Y. L. M. I. A. She is 
very enthusiastic in what- 

ALICE CALDER TUDDENHAM. ever she undertakes and car- 

ries forward her duties with 

vigor and success. She is a born leader in musical matters, 
but none the less a successful wife and a devoted mother. 


In no other branch of art is Utah so interested as in the 
beautiful art of music; it has often been remarked by visit- 
ing strangers that no place of its size can compare with 
Utah in the production of musicians, both vocal and instru- 
mental. It is indeed an honor therefore to be so gifted and so 

276 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

well-trained that one stands in the front ranks of our home 
artists. This distinction is certainly due the subject of this 
sketch, who is still young and full of brilliant promise for the 
future . 

Mattie Read was born in Nephi, Juab Co., and is the 
daughter of Walter P. and Martha A. Pond Read. She was 
educated in the public schools and later in the State Univer- 
sity, the family having removed to Salt Lake City when she 
was very young. Her mother 
was of a sensitive and refined 
nature , and reared her daugh- 
ter to be a true Latter-day 
Saint. The father is a local 
financial leader, and Mattie 
has therefore had excellent 
opportunities to develop her 
gifts. She was .organist in 
her ward for some time, and 
came into the Board as gen- 
eral organist in 1897. She 
has been a faithful Mutual 
worker from her very early 
years, acting as treasurer of 
the Twenty-First ward Y.L. 
M . I . A . for some years . She 
was organist of all the auxili- 
ary associations of that ward 
as well as ward organist. In 
1902, she went to Germany 
to study music. She studied MATTIE READ EVANS. 

in the Sterns Conservatory 

for a year and a half, and afterwards for over two years under 
Godowsky, who is the recognized leader in his profession in 
Germany. He was so satisfied with her work that he offered 
her a position in a conservatory for girls in the United States. 
Miss Read declined this offer, being anxious to return to 
her home and people. Since her return, she has demonstrated 
her powers as a musician, both in public and private. Her 
work with the ladies' chorus in a recent June conference of 
the Mutual, although performed under great difficulties, 
proved her a musician with ability along this line. 


Miss Read was married to Mr. P. Carl Evans, a lawyer of 
Salt Lake City, in 1907, and is the mother of one little daugh- 
ter. She has tried to keep up with much of her public work, 
for she has been often in demand for concerts and local 
musical work. She is organist of the Eighteenth ward choir 
besides retaining her large class of private pupils. She is one of 
the interpretive teachers of the city, and her waiting list of 
pupils is always large. She plays with exquisite expression, but 
her chief quality is that of musical pedagogy. She has the 
gift of developing the art in ethers and even if she were not 
so highly trained herself, she would still be very popular be- 
cause of this rare gift. 

Mrs. Evans is of delicate and refined manners and pos- 
sesses the spiritual magnetism which is called "soul" in art 
circles. The General Board is fortunate in the labors of this 
young woman, for her strength of character and her pure testi- 
mony of the Gospel but serve to mark with shining contrast 
the extreme diffidence and shyness of her retiring disposition.. 
The future years, when her children are reared and home is 
not so insistent in its demands, may well be expected to utilize 
the wealth of experience she is acquiring. This in turn she will 
bestow upon the association which, after her happy home and 
its beloved inmates, has claimed her first love. 


vSurely every dweller in Zion has heard of the famous 
pioneer musician, Charles J. Thomas. He was of a musical 
and well-educated family and was trained for a French horn 
player. He was considered, in his early youth, the best per- 
former on that difficult instrument in all London. He was of 
the pure English type of musicians, and glees and madrigals 
sang themselves into the very fiber of his being. He played 
in the Royal Italian Opera company, and was himself possess- 
ed of histrionic as well as musical ability. But he sacrificed 
his ambitions and prospects, and followed the course of his 
guiding star to western America to join his fortunes with the 
Mormons. His wife, Amy Adams, the mother of Eliza- 
beth, was the daughter of Barnabas Adams, a pioneer of 
the best type, and grandfather of Maude Adams, the great 



American actress. Elizabeth, as the daughter of such parents , 
could scarcely fail to inherit rare gifts and powers. Her 
mother is also musical, and sings in the famous Temple choir, 
which Brother Thomas still leads. 

Elizabeth was born May 6th, 1881, in the house where the 
Thirteenth ward Retrenchment Association was organized. 
She is possessed of that regularity of feature and symmetry 

which would become silken 
robes and jeweled ornaments. 
But she has been trained by 
her good mother to adorn her 
spirit with the pearl of hu- 
mility rather than to seek for 
the perishable glories of earth 
and vain pleasures. When she 
was two years old, she knew 
by sound the air of over 
thirty tunes; and the father 
delighted in displaying this 
accomplishment for his own 
and his friends' amusement. 
She was singing alto at the 
age of nine years in Sunday 
School and Primary enter- 
tainments, and could also play 
on the piano at this early age . 
Elizabeth has not had the 
opportunity of cultivating her 
gifts abroad, but the sweet 

ELIZABETH THOMAS sARDONi. willingness which she mani- 

fests to use. them in every 

good and worthy cause, makes her loved and admired wher- 
ever she goes. 

She has acted as counselor to the president of the Y.L.M. 
I. A. of the Thirteenth ward, where she was born and reared, 
and later was president of that association. She was made as- 
sistant organist for the General Board of the Y. L. M. I. A. in 
1902, and is faithful in her attendance in that duty. She was 
organist for the Temple choir for some years, as well as nearly 
all the auxiliary organizations in her ward. She has studied 
at home, being a pupil of Arthur Shepherd. She has a living 


testimony of the Gospel, and has the gift of faith and healing, 
and possesses that best of all gifts, unfailing- charity. 

Elizabeth was married on the 22d of March, 1906, to a 
young- Italian convert to the Gospel, Lorenzo Sardoni, a mu- 
sician of g-ood standing in the community. He is now the 
director of an orchestra and is a kind husband and a g-ood 
provider to his charming- wife and her dear ones. They have 
two beautiful boys, and both parents are deeply blessed in 
their joyous privileg-e of parenthood. And here we leave them 
to work out the common and happy destiny of those who love 
art and truth and God. 



Order of procedure. A preliminary meeting. Nomination by the 
First Presidency. Reorganization in April; names presented at 
June conference, 1905. 

THE winter following- Sister Taylor's death was a busy 
one, for no reorganization was effected till spring and 
the heavy work was carried forward gallantly by the Board. 
For a long time previous, the burden of the executive work 
had fallen upon the shoulders of Sister Dougall, as first coun- 
selor. The news of the world of Mutual Improvement work 
had been brought to Sister Taylor each day for some months 
previous to her death, by the assistant secretary, Agnes S. 
Campbell; but the labor of presiding- at meetings, and of 
directing many of the details of the work, had been performed 
by the first counselor. The second counselor, Sister Ting-ey, 
was ill for many months, and was unable to attend meetings; 
she was carried, as it were, to the funeral and looked very 
frail as she sat in the upper pulpit at the services. Imme- 
diately following the funeral, in December, Sister Dougall 
was taken by her anxious husband to spend the winter in 
California, her health, never the best, having been seriously 
impaired during the previous year. This would have been in 
the nature of a calamity, but for the providential fact that the 
health of Sister Tingey was almost fully and miraculously 
restored, permitting her to come all winter to the weekly 
Board meetings. 

There is an order in the Church, in all its workings and 
details. Students who have examined the machinery of the 
organization of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day 
Saints are struck with admiration for its simple and effectual 
construction. Parnell, the great Irish statesman, pronounced 
it the most perfect organization known to man; while the 


American student and sociologist, Prof. Richard Ely, de- 
clared that it was equaled only by the German army in its 
completeness and detail. This order and system extends to 
the auxiliary organizations, therefore it will be worth while 
to give, briefly, the details of the reorganization of the Y. L. 
M. I. Associations. 

When an officer of a stake or local auxiliary organization 
dies or resigns, the superior officers, with the approval and 
assistance of the priesthood, choose another to fill the va- 
cancy; but when the general president of the organization 
dies, the reorganization is in the hands of the presidency of 
the Church. The death or resignation of the president of any 
organization in the Church at once releases the counselors, but 
the offices of secretary and treasurer are continuous ones, and 
are not dependent upon any other office. It might have hap- 
pened that the office of aid, being created by Sister Taylor 
herself, and therefore not being of regular or general scope, 
would at her death be discontinued, or at least the members 
disorganized. But the presiding authority of the Church 
elected otherwise. The aids in the Young Ladies' Mutual 
Improvement Association were treated as part of the General 

Sister Taylor died in December, 1904, but no attempt at 
reorganizing the General Board of the Y. L. M. I. A. was 
made during the winter. The routine work was carried 
forward, under the direction of Counselor Tingey. In the 
spring of 1905 and by request of the First Presidency, the 
members of the General Board met at the Brigham Young 
Memorial building on Sunday, April 2, 1905, at the close of 
the Temple fast meeting. The genial organizer, and president 
of the Twelve Apostles, Francis M. Lyman, was present and 
took charge of the meeting. Associated with him were Apos- 
tles Hyrum Smith and George A. Smith. 

When all were seated, the meeting was opened with 

282 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

prayer; then a few timely remarks were made by Presi- 
dent Lyman, who said the presiding brethren greatly 
appreciated the labors of Sister Elmina S. Taylor, re- 
cently deceased; they now desired to consult with her 
co -laborers, with regard to the appointment of her successor, 
and asked if any one present had anything to say, before pro- 
ceeding with the duty before them. President Lyman sug- 
gested that the members present write the names of possible 
candidates on slips of paper, these to be gathered up at the 
close of the meeting. Names need not be confined to members 
of the present Board. It would be best to give several from 
which to choose. This plan was followed. 

The members present on this historic occasion were: 
Counselor Martha H. Tingey, Secretary Ann M. Cannon, 
Treasurer Mae Taylor Nystrom, Aids Adella W. Eardley, 
Agnes S. Campbell, Sarah Eddington, Susa Young Gates, 
Minnie J. Snow, May Booth Talmage, Joan Campbell, Rose 
W. Bennett, Alice K. Smith, Ruth M. Fox, Julia M. Brixen, 
Augusta W. Grant, Mary A. Freeze, Estelle Neff, Nellie C. 
Taylor, Emily C. Adams, Mary E. Connelly, Elen Wallace, 
Musical Director Alice C. Tuddenham, Assistant Organist 
Elizabeth Thomas. Members not present were Counselor 
Maria Y. Dougall, in Calif orhia, Aids Emma Goddard, ill; 
Elizabeth C. McCune, in Peru; Organist Mattie Read, in 
Germany. After the papers were gathered by Apostle George 
A. Smith, a unanimous vote was given to sustain the one 
chosen by the First Presidency. The hymn, ''Lord dismiss 
us with Thy Blessing," was sung and the meeting was 

The General Board had a great deal of work on hand to 
prepare for the June conference, and this was now April; so 
that their labors were not discontinued, nor was there any 
particular excitement in the Board. Each member seemed 
to feel that implicit confidence in the over-ruling Providence 


which guides all things aright, no matter what the personal 
prejudices or preferences might be. 

On April 5th, Wednesday afternoon, the General Board 
were again called together, and they met in the editorial room 
of the Journal office. This meeting was presided over by 
Sister Martha Home Tingey. She directed the usual opening 
exercises and asked for the reading of the minutes of the spe- 
cial meeting held the Sunday before in the Memorial building. 
The general secretary then opened and read the following 
letter from the First Presidency of the Church: 

To the General Board of the Y. L.M. I A. 

Deal Sisters: 

The committee who were appointed by the First Pres- 
idency to consult you with reference to your choice of one 
to fill the vacancy caused by the death of your beloved and 
lamented president, Sister Elmina S. Taylor, have reported 
to us as follows: 

We recommend that Sister Martha H. Tingey be nomi- 
nated for president, Maria Y. Dougall as first and Ruth M. 
Fox as second counselors. 

We hereby notify you that the foregoing recommendation 
is accepted and heartily approved by us, and we submit the 
same as our decision and recommendation to the Board. 
With very kindest regards, we are, 
Your brethren, 

First Presidency of the Church. 

It was moved, seconded and carried to sustain the action 
of the First Presidency. 

After a brief pause, Sister Tingey arose and expressed 
appreciation of the honor which this action had conferred 
upon her, and stated that she would earnestly endeavor to 
carry on the great work devolving upon her. She spoke 
lovingly to all present, mentioning especially the aids, some 

284 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

of whom had wondered if they would now be released; she 
told them she could not spare one of them for she felt great 
need of the generous support and assistance of every member 
of the Board. Each one present spoke, and all were broken 
with emotion, and melted with the spirit of the occasion. 

The benediction was pronounced by Ann M. Cannon. 

Thus ended the second most historic meeting in the his- 
tory of the Y. L. M. I. A. After this, various committees 
proceeded to complete the preparations for the June conference, 
and all members of the Board were speedily and contentedly 
at work. 

The next mail brought from Sister Dougall in California 
a most noble and characteristic letter to Sister Tingey, which 
will explain itself, and will form a part of this history. 

Sister Dougall says: 

I have known you from childhood; have labored with 
you for the past twenty years. I know your worth. And I 
feel that Sister Taylor's mantle will surely fall upon your 
shoulders. Could she speak to us, I know she would say she 
is well pleased with the choice. 

I appreciate very much indeed being chosen to be one of 
your counselors, and could I conscientiously have accepted 
the position would have done so; but I do not feel I could do 
the work of that office in my present state of health . And 
while I have in years past tried to perform my duties as Sis- 
ter Taylor's counselor, I feel the work growing and extending 
to that magnitude it would be impossible for me to attend to 
the work that would necessarily fall upon me. 

I do earnestly pray for you, dear sister, that your body 
may be strengthened, your mind enlightened, your intellec- 
tual powers increased to the extent that nothing will be a 
burden to you. My interest will always be with you in the 
work; I love it and am still one with you in spirit. 

I know that you will be as clay in the hands of the potter 
to be formed and fashioned as the Spirit of the Lord may will 
to perform His glorious work in the earth. 

In some respects, I am better than for years, and im- 
proving gradually. But no one knows, not even my own 


family, how Sister Taylor's death prostrated me. I should 
have resigned months and months ago, had it not been for 
her feeble health, but I could not feel to broach the subject 
to her, under the circumstances. 

I love the Temple work, too, and feel I shall be able to 
perform that without so much physical strength as the Mu- 
tual Improvement work entails. 

Love and blessings to you all. 

In accordance with the earnest request of Sister Dou- 
gall, she was released from the position of first counselor, 
and Mae Taylor Nystrom was chosen by the First Presidency 
to act as Sister Tingey 's second counselor, while Sister Fox 
was named as first counselor. The appointment of Sister Ny- 
strom pleased and comforted the members of the Board for 
the loss of their beloved Sister Dougall, as no other appoint- 
ment could have done. 

The names of the General Board were not placed before 
the people at the general April conference, and not until the 
young people met in June; but the Board was fully organized 
by the middle of April. One essential change in the working 
of the committees was announced by President Tingey in 
May. It was that, in accordance with the wishes and in- 
tentions of President Taylor, the personnel of the various 
committees should be changed from time to time, in order to 
have new ideas and new plans introduced. The members 
would get a more varied experience by changing about and 
working on the different committees than by confining their 
labors to one. Therefore, it was decided that these com- 
mittees should continue for only two years. 

At a meeting held on the 3rd of May, 1905, Sister Dou- 
gall, who had just returned from California, met with the 
General Board. Towards the close of the meeting, Sister 
Tingey called upon Sister Dougall to say a few words. The 
pent-up eloquence of that loving heart burst forth and blessed 
and encouraged every one present. At the conclusion of 

286 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Sister Bengali's remarks, Sister Eardley moved that Sister 
Dougall be made an honorary member of the Board. There 
was an instant second by half the members present; and with 
unanimous good- will, the motion was carried. Thus the Board 
secured the counsel and occasional assistance of their oldest 
working- member, and had in this way an opportunity to ex- 
press, formally, the love and honor in which they held Sister 
Maria Young- Doug-all. 

The June conference of 1905 which followed was one of 
the best and most successful ever held by the young women 
of Zion. There was an outpouring of love and sympathy 
which must have gladdened the hearts of the newly chosen 
officers. One new feature of this conference was the depart- 
ment meetings, held by the young ladies. The presidents 
and counselors met in one place, the aids in another, the 
secretaries in a room by themselves, the treasurers in another 
and the librarians and musical directors by themselves. This 
was a very successful departure from the usual forms. 

The new Board of the Y. L. M. I. A. have had five years 
experience in laboring side by .side for the advancement of 
the young daughters of Zion; and if any one thing more than 
another has marked the administration of President Tingey, 
it is the righteous quality within her that helps her to sink 
her own individuality, as far as possible, in the great work 
she has to do. She has no personal ambitions that find out- 
ward expression. She goes placidly on her way, supported by 
her two conscientious counselors, and together they form a 
quorum that proves invincible to the evil and inviting to the 
good influences in the earth. 





Martha Home Tingey is the daughter of Joseph and 
Mary Isabella Home. She is their fourteenth child, and was 
born Oct. 15, 1857, in the Fourteenth ward of Salt Lake City. 
She is rather small in stature, with the same gentle but firm 
voice and manner which were so much a part of her mother. 
From her early childhood, Mattie was a lover of books and 
eagerly devoured everything in that line that came within her 
reach. It must be remembered that all kinds of books could 
not be obtained then so easily as now. She received her 
education in private schools and in the Deseret University, 
now the University of Utah. 

She was gifted in music, and had natural elocutionary 
powers, and being possessed of a rare memory, was in con- 
stant demand for public and private entertainments. Her 
health might fail, but her invincfible determination to do her 
duty carried her over every obstacle. She was of spiritual 
longings; and often her mother found her seated quietly in 
the corner listening to the inspiring testimonies of the good 
and great men and women gathered in that hospitable home. 

In the summer of 1873, half a dozen girls, through the 
invitation of President Brigham Young and Apostle George 
Q. Cannon, undertook to acquire the trade of type-setting. 
It was a new departure, even for the progressive Mormons, 
and much was said to discourage the innovation. In the 
published list of these girls, the name of Martha Home heads 
the list. 

When the Central Board, as it was first called, of the 
Y. L. M. I. A. was formed, in 1880, with Sister Elmina S. 
Taylor at the head, she chose the youthful, modest, and yet 
fully qualified daughter of Sister Home for her second coun- 
selor. Miss Martha had very grave doubts about her ability 
to fill this honorable position, but her chief had not the 
shadow of one. The girl had never learned to say "no" to 
superior authority, so she meekly took her place beside her 
file leader. 

On the 30th of September, 1884, Martha was married to 
Joseph S. Tingey, son of Bishop John Tingey of the Seven- 

288 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

teenthward. The union has been very congenial and one of 
mutual helpfulness. Brother Tingey 's liberal character is an 
example of what a man can do, as a husband, father and Elder 
in Israel, without in any way hindering- the development of a 
gifted wife. 

The public labors of Mrs. Tingey have been before the 
people for thirty years; for in her very childhood, she joined 
the first Retrenchment Association. She has never departed 
from the spirit of those early resolutions. In spite of example, 
friendship, and every degenerating influence, she has held 
steadily the path which God and her own integrity marked 
out for her to follow. She was counselor in the ward Y. L. 
M. I. A. and also in the Primary Association for several years, 
and secretary and teacher of the Sunday School. 

It would be unfair to write anything about Mrs. Tingey 
which did not speak of her qualities of house-wife and home- 
maker. It might be inferred that so much public work would 
militate against her family duties; but the fact is that even in 
her early youth while engaged as a type-setter, she still found 
time to engage in household arts, and especially to become 
an accomplished seamstress. And now, notwithstanding that 
she is at the head of the girls in all Zion, she is still devoted 
to her home and family and is known among her associates 
as a good wife and mother. She has the unusual quality of 
system and order, so that all her tasks fall into line as well- 
drilled soldiers. She is the mother of seven children. 

Mrs. Tingey has traveled much in the interest of M. I. 
work. She was one of the principal speakers on Utah day at 
the great congress of women at the World's Fair in Chicago 
in 1893. In 1899, she attended the Triennial session of the 
National Council of Women in Washington, acting as proxy 
for the president of the Y. L. M. I. A., and also represented 
that organization at the Triennial session held in Seattle in 
1909. Mrs. Tingey is always a convincing speaker, and at 
times pours forth her soul in the true language of eloquence. 
She has a dignified manner, and is quiet in speech, though 
aggressive in her opinions. She has the prudence to restrain 
speech, when silence is golden. If asked to name the most 
marked trait in Mrs. Tingey 's character, the answer would 
be, sincerity, genuineness. 

When Mrs. Tingey was asked to assume the presidency 


of the Y. L. M. I. A. in April, 1905, she did so with the same 
earnestness, modesty and zeal which have always characterized 
her public labors. 

Perhaps the most remarkable circumstance attached to 
the work done by Sister Tingey during the five years of her 
administration has been the fulfillment of the prophecy uttered 
upon her head by her own mother, and reiterated in the 
blessing which was pronounced upon her when she was set 
apart to preside over the Y. L. M. I. A. by President Joseph 
F. Smith, that she should have health and strength to per- 
form her labors . For years her health had been of the most 
precarious nature, but from the day when she came by faith 
and will-power to take her place at the funeral of her leader 
Sister Taylor, Sister Tingey has rarely been absent at any of 
the many and taxing councils of her Board. She has traveled 
through Oregon, Wyoming, and Idaho stakes; she has jour- 
neyed to Canada on the north and to far Mexico on the south 
in the labors of her calling, and her desire is to visit every 
stake in the Church and to look upon the inspiring faces of 
the girls wherever they are gathered under the Mutual ban- 
ners. She has never doubted the outcome in any difficulty 
or obstacle. Her quiet power of self-control is one mark of 
her greatness, and promises better and still better things 
from her as time goes on. 

New conditions which constantly come to any enlarging 
growth or community, have crowded themselves upon her 
careful attention; but she has met each new development, has 
solved all fresh problems with the united assistance of her 
counselors and her Board. She has so much deliberation, is 
so careful of results in her own conception of things material 
and spiritual, that her calm judicial example greatly influences 
her co-workers to their own decided benefit. 

If Sister Tingey could voice in one sentence the greatest 
wish of her motherly heart, it would be "that every daughter 
of Zion might be helped to get a testimony of the truth of the 
mission of Jesus Christ and of the new witness borne of that 
Savior by the Prophet Joseph Smith through the labors of 
the Mutual Improvement Associations." 


290 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 


At the age of sixteen months Ruth May was left mother- 
less. An evidence of the power of heredity may be seen in 
her case, for while her father loved her devotedly, and cared 
for her as best he could, the child, unknown to him, was often 
exposed to the evil influences of coarse and vulgar people. 
That she remained singularly fine and pure is due to the in- 
nocence and strength of her own character, and to the bless- 
ing of God. 

Shortly after her birth her parents joined the Church 
of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. At every opportunity, 
her father sought to teach her the principles of the gospel 
which he and her mother loved. He taught her to rely 
implicitly upon God, which gave her an unwavering faith. 
He taught her the Word of Wisdom so effectively that she 
has never been tempted to disobey it. He taught her to be 
truthful and honest; to share with another and to give that 
other first choice; to suffer wrong rather than to do wrong. 

Upon first meeting her, one notices the independent poise 
of her head, the brightness of her smile, the sparkle of her 
dark eyes. Listening to her conversation one is impressed by 
the keenness of her wit. Wit does not always attract, though 
it does interest; but when, as in this case, the stranger sees 
underneath it the spirit of love and kindness, he draws near 
and becomes one of a circle of admirers. Gradually under- 
neath the brilliant repartee he recognizes the warmth of her 
generous heart, the strength of her courage, and the depth 
of her humility; he sees the strong will , which yet yields to 
the will of her Maker; the honest pride which might have 
been haughtiness had it not learned to bend through obedi- 
ence to the gospel of Jesus Christ. Above all, he recognizes 
her faith, a principle so dominating her actions that even 
against his will he is compelled to pause and wonder at the 
beauty, joy and power of such an element in life. 

Ruth May was born November 16th, 1853, in Wiltshire, 
England. She is the daughter of James and Mary Ann May. 
After her mother's death, until nearly eight years of age, she 
was moved from town to town that she might be near her 
father in his journeying, as he was during that time a travel- 



ing elder. The next four years father and daughter lived in 
Yorkshire, whence he sailed for America, going- to Philadel- 
phia, where she joined him after a few months. Shortly 
afterward Mr. May married an English widow who had a 
daughter about Ruth's own age, with the two of whom Ruth 
had crossed the ocean . The union proved a very happy one , 
and Ruth gained the companionship and love of a mother as 
well as of a sister. 

Mr. May was an expert carder and readily secured em- 
ployment in Philadelphia . Since the entire family was anxious 
to emigrate to Utah, they worked unitedly to raise means for 
their traveling expenses. Ruth worked first with her father 
in a cotton factory; later she was employed at dress-making. 
In 1867, they started by ox team for Salt Lake City; but most 
of the distance across the plains was traveled by foot. After 
arriving in Salt Lake valley, Ruth worked with her father in 
the woolen mills. 

Her marriage to Jesse W. Fox, Jun., took place May 8th, 
1872. She is the mother of six sons and six daughters, all 
living except the eldest daughter. 

Mrs. Fox began her public work in the Primary Asso- 
ciation of the Fourteenth ward, Salt Lake City, when called to 
act as second counselor to Prest. Clara C. Cannon, which 
position she held for nineteen years. In 1895, she became 
president of the Y. L. M. I. A. of the same ward, and acted 
in that capacity until the autumn of 1904. Mrs. Fox has 
taken an active interest in the Woman's Suffrage association 
in the county, territorial and state organizations, of which 
she held office. She was also a member of the committee 
which drafted the memorial asking the constitutional conven- 
tion that the franchise for women be placed in the constitu- 
tion for the state of Utah. She was a charter member of the 
Woman's Press Club, and became the first treasurer of that 
organization; later, in 1897, she was elected president for the 
ensuing year. In the Reapers' Club, Mrs. Fox was also a 
charter member. She was a director of the Deseret Agricul- 
tural and Manufacturing Society for eight years, having been 
appointed to that position by Governor Heber M. Wells. 
Ever since the organization of the Bureau of Information in 
1902, Mrs. Fox has acted as one of the guides who give their 
time free of charge for the benefit of tourists. As a rule, she 

292 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

has spent, at this far reaching- work, a portion of two days in 
each week. 

In 1898, Sister Fox was set apart as an aid in the 
General Board of Y. L. M. I. A., and it is in this organization 
that she has, perhaps, given her most untiring- effort and 
found her most congenial public work. It was Sister Fox 
who first suggested and who took the initiative in establishing 
the traveling- libraries of the Y. L. M. I. A., acting as first 
chairman of the committee to whom that work was entrusted. 
In J 903 she represented the Young Ladies at the Executive 
session of the National Council of Women of the U. S. held in 
New Orleans. Sister Fox has made many of the longest and 
hardest trips in visiting the outlying stake organizations of 
the Young Ladies; and on more than one occasion she has, 
on very short notice, gone to fill appointments assigned to 
others when illness or other misfortune prevented their going; 
to her husband and children belong;s some of the credit for 
having assisted in making this possible. Mrs. Fox has given 
excellent service on the Journal, conference, and many special 
committees. In her labors on the Executive Board, as first 
counselor, she has worked intelligently and faithfully, 
forming, with President Tingey and Counselor Nystrom, a 
presidency of excellent poise and balance, able to see and 
understand fully the varying needs of the girls. 

In education Mrs. Fox is the peer of many women who 
have had greater advantages . She attended school in Eng- 
land till eleven years of age, after which she had no further 
opportunity until her arrival in Utah, when she attended the 
district school for six months and Morgan College for four 
months. After having been married about fifteen years, she 
awoke to the fact that she could find time for study in her 
own home and immediately began. She has kept in touch 
with the studies of her children and in addition taken a course 
in English through the Scran ton School of Correspondence. 
Her natural gift of poesy is very fine, and her technical 
knowledge is constantly growing, for she is, in regard to this, 
as to everything else, an indefatigable worker. Her poems 
appear frequently in the Young Woman's Journal and the 
Era. Her song "Galilee," set to music by Professor George 
Careless, is sung frequently by girls' voices. 

With such a record for public work and study one might 



easily wonder, What of her home? That is best answered 
by the fineness of her children, whose characters speak a 
volume for a mother's love and training-. Excellent health, 
coupled with a thirst for knowledge and a determination to 
achieve things, has made this record possible. Then, too, 
Mrs. Fox has believed in the promise, "The Lord shall make 
thee equal unto every task;" and it has been fulfilled. 


Mae Taylor Nystrom, second counselor to President 
Martha Home Tingey, is the daughter of the late Bishop 
George H. Taylor and Elmina Shepherd Taylor, beloved first 
president of the Y. L. M. I. A. She was born at the Taylor 
homestead in the Fourteenth ward, Salt Lake City, and grew 
to womanhood in the light of the home wherein she was nurtured 
and loved by a wise father, a tender mother, and three 
brothers who watched over her with pride. In the shelter of 
this family where love and peace ruled she was guarded from 
every ill of life and borne upon the wings of joy through 
childhood, girlhood and young womanhood, knowing little of 
trial or sorrow. By nature serene and sunshiny, it is in her 
home that these qualities are most quickly felt. She ap- 
preciated deeply the obligations of affection due her parents 
and served them with devotion. 

When a girl Mae Taylor attended the public school in 
Salt Lake City, later spent one year at the University of 
Utah, and at the founding of the Latter-day Saints' College, 
entered that institution and completed a course of study. 

The idtal of her girlhood was to become a perfect home- 
maker. With this in view she quietly set about its ac- 
complishment. Under her mother's direction she studied the 
varying phases of domestic science cooking, sewing, sani- 
tation, the care of the sick, and rounded out her home- 
making preparations by the oft repeated entertainment of her 
friends. Home, as Mae Taylor grew to understand it, "was 
the place where her family was loved and made happy ;**and 
it was also the place where friends should most surely*find 
welcome, hospitality and peace. Today the ideal\>f her girl- 
hood is the ideal ol her life in her heart home holds 
first place. 

294 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

One phase of education that early attracted her was 
physical culture. After some study in Salt Lake City she 
spent the summer of 1893 at Harvard in advanced work, and 
upon her return taught two years in the Utah School for 
Physical Culture under the direction of Maud May Babcock. 
She also took charge of the school as director for two years. 
With the hope of carrying- the benefits of physical culture 
to the Y. L. M. I. A. of the nearby wards, she at this time 
conducted drills in the monthly officers' meetings, held in the 
Fourteenth ward. 

In the character development of Mae Taylor Nystrom 
the influence of the M. I. A. has been great. Indeed, as 
counselor to President Tin gey, she might well be said to rep- 
resent the girls of the M. I. A. for she has advanced, by 
interest, earnest work and faithful service, from the first step 
of simple membership through various offices in the local 
association and upon the General Board, to her present po- 
sition. She typifies what development brings in the M. I. A. 

When but seventeen years of age Mae Taylor was made 
assistant secretary of the Fourteenth ward association. 
Three years later she became second counselor and four years 
afterward was made treasurer. Two traits of Mae Taylor's 
character marked her work unfailing attendance at meetings 
and most careful attention to the detail work of the office. 
These traits show where Mrs. Nystrom obtained the broad 
understanding of the M. I. A. that today makes her counsel 
valuable . 

October 9th, 1892, she was elected corresponding secretary 
of the General Board Y. L. M. I. A. and became familiar 
with many departments of the general work under the direct 
tuition of her mother. 

Into the performance of this duty she put the faithfulness 
of a secretary and the devotion of a daughter. 

June 21, 1900, Mae Taylor became the wife of Theodore 
Nystrom. After spending two years in Montpelier, Idaho, 
where Mr. Nystrom was manager of a large implement 
business, they came back to live at the Taylor homestead. 
On her return Mrs. Nystrom was called to act as treasurer of 
the General Board Y. L. M. L A. Resuming her place as 
daughter in her childhood home, to Mrs. Nystrom was given 
the joy of devotedly serving her loved mother and father 



during: their remaining: years. In December, 1904, her mother 
died. In April, 1907, her father followed. That the sunshine 
of her presence came back to them for those last years was 
their great joy. That they understood and appreciated her 
devotion was the blessing- that softened her grief. 

x At the reorganization of the General Board Y. L. M. I. A. 
in April, 1905, Mrs. Nystrom was chosen second counselor to 
President Tingey. She would rather have remained an aid; 
but love of the work to which her mother had given so much 
of her life's best energy, faith in the authority that called her, 
and the unwavering sense of duty that dominates all her 
actions led her to accept. Into this new field of activity she 
has brought her faithfulness in attendance of meetings; her 
careful attention to detail; her broad attitude of mind that 
seeks information on all sides of questions before rendering 
judgment; her love of the gospel and desire to have its in- 
fluence directing the lives of the girls of the M. I. A. 

Especially have the Young Woman's fournal, stake con- 
ferences, and conventions felt her interest. Twice she has 
represented the Y. L. M. I. A. at the National Council of 
Women: at the Executive session held in Union City, Illinois, 
November, 1908, and with President Tingey, at the Triennial 
session in Seattle, July, 1909. 

In the active service of the Y. L. M. I. A. Mrs. Nystrom 
is a busy woman. With the pressing duty done and the 
shelter of her home reached, she finds strength and rest and 
encouragement in the love that today upholds her there. 


Born with the soul of a poet, Alice Kimball came into a 
family presided over by one of the greatest of modern men 
President Heber C. Kimball. She had no time and less op- 
portunity to be made aware of anything unusual in her own 
nature or her father's powerful family administration. If 
there is one more remarkable fact about the founders of this 
Church than another, it is the absolute devotion with which 
they have inspired each and all of their children. No matter 
how large the family, or how indifferent the descendant 
might become to the faith which make these men what they 
were the child and the children have retained a devotion 

296 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

that amounts in most instances to adoration of those men who 
staked their all upon the divinity of the mission of the Prophet 
Joseph Smith. Such fathers could not have been aught but 
great and noble men. No daughter in all this kingdom is 
more passionately devoted to the memory of her parents than 
is the subject of this sketch. 

To be the daughter of one president and prophet and the 
wife of another president and prophet is a distinction rarely 
attained even by a Latter-day Saint. Yet, as the daughter 
of President Heber C. Kimball, and the wife of President 
Joseph F. Smith, the subject of this brief sketch might well 
be endowed with unusual gifts. 

Sister Smith is a twin. Her brother, Andrew Kimball, 
is the well-known president of St. Joseph stake of Arizona. 
She, or they, were born in Salt Lake City, in the Eighteenth 
ward, September 6th, 1858, just after the return of the people 
from "The Move" to Provo. Her father passed away when 
she was nine years of age and her mother eleven years after. 
Alice was ever an obedient daughter. Her mother, Ann 
Alice Gheen, was a descendant of the old Pennsylvania 
Quaker stock. She was for many years an invalid and Alice 
was devoted to her. During the last few weeks of her life 
this daughter was her attendant both by day and by night. 
Her mother's last words are treasured lovingly in her memory, 
"Alice, you have been a joy to me all the days of your life." 

Her education, begun in the day school, received some 
rounding out, or completion (for there was no graduation in 
the pioneer days in Utah), at the Deseret University, under 
Dr. Park. 

She is the mother of seven children, all of whom do her 

Sister Smith has acted for years as a teacher in the 
Sunday Schools, was a counselor to Mrs. Mary Irvine in the 
Nineteenth ward Y. L. M. I. A., and was for a time president 
of the Primary Association of that ward. 

In 1896 she was chosen by President Elmina S. Taylor 
to act as an aid on the General Board of the Y. L. M. I. A. 
The call came as a complete surprise, and with her charac- 
teristic deliberation, she weighed the matter long and care- 
fully, putting to herself the question which she ever asks 
when public duty and private cares are in the balance will 


this position have a tendency to defraud my children of a 
mother's love and a mother's constant watchcare, or can I 
find time and strength to do both? The answer took her into 
the Board, for she trusted to the loving- wisdom of her hus- 
band and to the assurance of her own prayerful heart. 

Alice Kimball Smith is peculiarly gifted with the inheri- 
tance from her father inspiration; an inspiration which 
guides her daily footsteps and which gives her wise answers 
that are like "apples of gold in pictures of silver" to children 
and friends who seek her counsel. That inspiration also 
rests upon her at times in her ministry to the daughters of 
Zion; and when it does, her tongue is tipped with the fire 
from the altar of divine eloquence. Her heart is ever a- quiver 
with the suppressed emotions of a keenly sensitive spirit; and 
when she is forced to appear before an audience, she forgets 
self and remembers only God and the eager girls who are 
listening to her moving appeals. 

Added to her solicitous motherhood is the skill of the 
housewife and the rarer artistic handling of the needle, which 
can make old garments look like new, and can fashion the 
new into robes of grace and beauty. She is her own seamstress, 
and does not shrink even from the difficult art of tailoring her 
own outer garments. She is gifted with the love of art in all 
its manifold expressions, yet for lack of proper cultivation, 
her songs have gone unsung, her poems have never been 
written. She lacks confidence in herself, and but from a 
stern sense of duty would never enter into public enterprises. 
And yet, the way has opened for many journeys to be taken, 
for missions to be filled. Her two faithful and devoted 
daughters could tell some of the reasons why this has been 
made possible. 

In April, 1905, when the Board was reorganized, Mrs. 
Smith was chosen to act as general treasurer, to take the 
place left vacant by Mrs. Mae T. Nystrom. She felt the 
heavy responsibility of such a calling. To half do her duty 
would be impossible. It must be done as skillfully and as 
faithfully as would be possible to any other in like cir- 
cumstances. So the only thing to do she did: take a course 
in bookkeeping to qualify her to keep her books, which she 
has since been able to do most successfully. 

Mrs. Smith was chosen to act as counselor to the 

298 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Daughters of the Pioneers in 1905, and served several years 
in that position. She has also been named as the only lady 
in the presidency of the Sons and Daughters of the Pioneers. 
Such is the life and such are the foundation principles 
which have gone into the making of this beautiful character. 
What she has done is not the unusual thing, it is how she 
has done it; it is not what she teaches with her lips eloquent 
as they may be that makes the righteous ensample for the 
girlhood of the Church to pattern after; it is what her faith 
and trust have fashioned out of the life materials at her hand. 
Beauty is not of our making or altering; but integrity, truth, 
loyalty to friends, devotion to family interests and duty this 
it is which makes of Mrs. Smith an ideal worthy of all 
emulation . 



Resume of the nrst forty years' work. A glimpse at a local Mutual 
Improvement meeting; at a stake board meeting; at a General 
Board meeting. The power behind them. The results. 

/CONTEMPLATE for a moment the social and religious 
V> conditions of today without Mutual Improvement As- 
sociations! What would we do if they were suddenly to 
dissolve; what and where would we be if they had never 
existed? Fancy if you can, seventy thousand young: people 
without a Mutual Improvement Association, with no Era or 
Young Woman s Journal no Mutual conferences or con- 
ventions no weekly ward Mutual Improvement meetings 
no Sunday conjoint evening sessions no libraries no or- 
ganized social activities no proper outlet for natural gayety 
and talents no training-school for future missionaries and 
future home-makers! The young men might not be in the 
sorry condition of the girls, even then; for they have their 
quorums, missions, and the woven web of offices from deacon 
to the president of the Church. But the girls would be lost 
indeed. Church schools and Sunday schools might employ 
some of their time and develop a portion of their talents, yet 
both would be wholly inadequate to give the spiritual and 
mental equipment so necessary for the ideal woman of today . 
Mortality has no scales with which to weigh , no rule by which 
to measure, the value of the Mutual Improvement work to 
the young women of Zion! 

Let us close this story of the Y. L. M. I. A. with a 
glance over the forty years of achievement since their or- 
ganization in the Lion House on that night of November 
28th, 1869. 

Out of that preliminary meeting grew the Retrenchment 
work. Ward organizations of the girls followed, and in ten 
years there were Young Ladies' Retrenchment Associations 

300 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

in practically every ward in Zion. Associated with this work 
was the introduction of similar societies among- the young men, 
which were christened the Young Men's Mutual Improvement 
Associations. The name of the girls' societies was changed 
to harmonize with the newer work, and these societies soon 
became two halves of a great whole. Then came the setting 
in order of the stakes of Zion. Next followed the grouping 
together of all the women's organizations with General 
Boards. The Young Woman 's Journal was started under 
the auspices of the General Board ot the Y. L. M. I. A. Next 
was chosen a corps of aids for the General Board, followed by 
a regular course of study provided in Guides prepared and 
published by the general authorities. The historical and 
financial interests of the Board were brought up to the highest 
standard of efficiency by the general secretary. A yearly 
Dime Fund was inaugurated successfully. A traveling 
library movement was projected and later the ward libraries 
were greatly increased and are now censored wisely and 
rigorously. The wards and stakes blossomed into great 
centers of social light and educational activity. Standing com- 
mittees were organized to facilitate work in the General Board. 
The girls meanwhile gave freely of their time and vitality to 
raise means for local, educational, and charitable causes. 
Joining forces with their brother associations in certain di- 
rections, conjoint general conferences were arranged each 
June in Salt Lake City, followed by the grouping of stake 
interests in yearly gatherings of a similar nature. The tenta- 
tive work done by the Mutual Improvement League of earlier 
years in physical education has come into perfect fulfillment 
through the erection of a magnificent gymnasium in Salt Lake 
City, and other smaller ones scattered throughout the stakes. 
The national and international movements of women in all the 
world have not ignored the efforts and friendship of the 
Mutual Improvement girls in Zion, but have given their loyal 


support to our educational and social achievements. All these, 
with many minor developments, marked the twenty-five years 
of the labor and ministry of Elmina S. Taylor and her asso- 
ciate workers. After her death, December 4th, 1904, came 
the reorganization of the Board with Martha H. Tingey as 
president, and her associated workers. The girls contributed 
of their means to assist in erecting- suitable headquarters for 
the general Y. L. M. I. offices, which funds were merged 
with those of the other women's auxiliary organizations, and 
given to the Church, receiving 1 in return the splendid accom- 
modations now theirs in the Bishop's building opposite the 
Salt Lake Temple. 

Contemplate for a moment some of the results of these 
labors! Imagine the effect produced on the impalpable yet 
perfectly organized spiritual atmosphere about us, super- 
induced by the unity of purpose and labor existing among 
over seventy thousand young people! Most of the associations 
meet on the same evening in the week, study the same lessons, 
from Canada to Mexico, from New York to San Francisco; 
yes, and they are at work away off in Honolulu, in Australia, 
and in most of the countries of Europe. Not only are the 
studies and the date of meeting identical, but the objects and 
aims of all are alike; there is present no motive but ''self cul- 
ture" except the infinitely higher one of service of the su~ 
perior intelligence to the inferior. 

There is no coercion; all are at liberty, to come and to 
go. The only test of membership is integrity, purity of 
character and faithfulness in labor. There are no distinctions 
in class or caste; intelligence and diligence are the sole re- 
quirements for preferment and position. While the re- 
sponsibility of office is rather avoided than otherwise, the 
honor of being selected is sensibly appreciated by the youth 
of both sexes. As a rule diligent service is given. Every 
office is filled, each study is undertaken, entirely as an indi- 

302 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

vidtial affair. The whole spirit of work and workers is per- 
missive, not mandatory. The stimulus to members and offi- 
cers is that given by the impetus of conscious duty done, and 
hard but loving- service rendered. 

It was understood by the leaders of the movement that 
the element of popularity must be counted upon as a strong- 
force in the work. For this reason the social features have 
ever been emphasized. Efforts have been made to induce 
the social leaders among both sexes to lend their aid in car- 
rying- forward the plans and purposes of the association. Jf 
the ' 'pure life' ' and the ' 'proper life' ' can be made as popular 
as the "strenuous life," a mig-hty force will be focussed in the 
ranks of Mutual Improvement work. To make it a popular 
thing- to be well-bred and intelligent, while increasing the 
impulse towards spiritual development, has been the aim of 
the Mutual Improvement Association; and results prove that 
the mingling of spiritual, social and educational objects has 
been most happy and desirable. 

Think what it means to any community to have the 
amusements of the young controlled or guided by wise and 
righteous leaders! Not leaders chosen from the staid and 
older members of the community only, but also the wisest 
and most sympathetic selected from among the young people ! 
The young will follow the young more quickly than they will 
follow the old and sedate. Above all the influences which 
have contributed to make this work the success which it has 
become, is the fact, and it marks all the similar work done in 
the Church, that no work is performed for a monetary 
reward but is offered as a labor of love. The heart grows 
sad when labor is misunderstood and purposes misjudged. 
The hands grow tired, the feet weary, with the strain of 
continuous and unfruitful labors. The brain sometimes 
refuses to toil when injustice and sharpness are the seeming 
reward for long and concentrated struggle. But when the 


hour is past, and the time is struck, the soul leaps from its 
sorrowing couch with the consciousness of pure effort made 
and undivided purpose intended. The vision of hope is 
opened by the handclasp of a friend, or the unexpected bless- 
ing- of a servant of God; and, for a season, the "legend 
beautiful" is a veritable reality to the harrowed mind and 
the tired feet. With the blessed vision of what has been 
done comes power and determination to press forward to other 
and more difficult labors, to engage in higher and severer 
struggles to bless and benefit mankind. So the worker, 
whether member or officer, is encouraged to go on and on, 
up and up. Is not this a cause to claim the deepest devotion 
and most loving fealty? 

Shall we close this narrative history with a pen-picture 
of present conditions, a word-photograph of Mutual Improve- 
ment work today? The dignified historian is too often handi- 
capped by the seriousness of his work; he escapes the flip- 
pancy of the modern touch-and-go descriptions of colossal 
events, yet does he also miss much of the piquancy and 
charm which invests sober facts with vivid personality. 
Imagination may be a will-o'-the-wisp, but its light spontaneity 
and graceful vagrancy have a value all too poignant to be 
lightly ignored. We know the Church was organized on the 
sixth day of April, 1830, with six members; but the bare facts 
do not kindle the soul unless we clothe the skeleton with the 
warmth and fullness of our imaginations and endeavor to see 
it as it really occurred. What would we not give for some 
light, perchance, but truthful account of that event given .in 
the breezy language of the modern newspaper reporter! 
Clothed with our imagination we can see the small, low- 
ceiled room, the group of earnest, sober men, the focussed 
figure of the boy-prophet, as he proceeded with the prelimi- 
nary details of that marvelous work. Ah, if an imaginative 
historian had been there, how rich and rare had been that 

304 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

literary inheritance! So, too, in twenty, fifty, or numberless 
years from now when, it may well be, the re-building of 
the Center Stake of Zion has begun when the greater dis- 
coveries have been made, the mightier earth-forces have been 
disclosed and utilized when the head of this organization 
may be 1 Dcated in the New Jerusalem do you "not suppose 
that the young girl-readers of that day will be glad to open 
the ancient lids of a book that will describe, ever so haltingly, 
the far-away days and events which centered around the be- 
ginnings of Mutual Improvement work? Will they not be 
grateful for the will-o'-the-wisp touch which will disclose for 
them the scenes as well as the facts, clothing events with a 
robe of imaginative reality? 

Come then, thou will-o'-the-wisp Imagination only let 
thy leading strings be truth, and thy path be horizoned con- 
stantly with the blue of heaven's own inspiration! 

Here, in the year of our Lord 1910, is a busy hive of 
young girls, living in any one of the 700 wards of the Church, 
and grouped in a ward Mutual Improvement Association. 
Do you see that bevy of laughing, jostling, giddy, fourteen - 
year-old Junior Mutual girls, chewing gum not so much as 
they used to do, but enough strolling along this Sunday or 
Tuesday night, hair combed high on their shapely young 
heads or flowing in gay disordered braids down their backs- 
eyes on the watch for their boy-companions, also some- 
where on the road to the ' 'meeting-house?" Their heads are 
full of nonsense, but their hearts are full of possibilities; 
puffs are in their hair, and silly laughter is on their lips 
for human nature is ever the same and youth is a play-time 
and a laugh-time; see that it is not checked too rudely or 
altered too sternly, or you may make of it a cheating-time 
and a sin -time! These laughing Junior girls are followed 
more sedately by the Senior girls who have lately eschewed 
gum, and whose pompadoured hair has gained much in 


smoothness and size - through superior age and more dig- 
nified ideals. As one gazes at the throngs wending their way 
to the warmed and lighted churches all over the land many 
of the little groups of girls joined as they saunter by boys 
and young men, all of them full of the fire of youth, the wine 
of life one pauses with bated breath as one recalls the subtle 
temptations, the doubly intensified modern pitfalls for the 
youth of both sexes, and wonders dimly at the blind con- 
fidence of earthly parents, the seeming calm indifference of 
Providence, in thus throwing together unprotected girls and 
boys. Yet as we linger, doubting, we see them mount the 
steps of the churches and crowd joyously within. There, the 
sweet seclusion, the hallowed association, begin the quelling 
influence, which is supplemented by the quiet self-control of 
the officers. True, the young whisperers of both sexes will 
ever be there, sitting on the back benches and ogling each 
other at various angles. Hark, the deep tones of the organ 
voluntary begin, the opening hymn is announced, in which 
all join, standing as they sing, followed by the heartfelt, 
earnest prayer for grace which settles upon the restless young 
spirits like a garment and completes the transformation. Our 
anxieties are subdued, our confidence is established. We are 
ready to listen to the preliminary program, and to watch the 
orderly marching to music which separates the young men 
from the girls and which finally subdivides the Juniors and 
the Seniors of both sexes. We are attuned to the time and 
occasion, and are prepared to take up the lesson of the 
evening, be it in theology, literature or ethics. Reflection 
quiets our suspicions, but does not give the key to the situ- 
ation. Schools, clubs, may do all this; what more is there 
within this association which encourages the ideal develop- 
ment of spirit, brain and body? Come again, on the first 
Tuesday in the month, and enter the girls' department after 
the preliminary exercises are over, and after the young men 


306 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

have adjourned to their class rooms. It is " testimony nig-ht." 
A hush, born of palpitating- expectancy, of emotional antic- 
ipation, pervades the atmosphere. Every tongue-tied girl 
sits dumbly convinced that she can never get courage or faith 
to rise upon her feet and speak to others about her own spir- 
itual experiences. Now an officer, the gentle and loving 
president herself perchance, arises and says a few simple, 
genuine words about the need of true conversion, giving, it 
may be , a new experience of her own in this spiritual field of 
mutual endeavor; then, she urges each girl present to arise 
and "say something." Stimulated by her example, one after 
another gets up, giving tearful utterance to the "hope that is 
within her," relates some case of healing the sick, or gives 
other precious experiences which have come to her knowledge. 
Eyes wet with sympathy, hearts melted by fear and love 
what wonder that the delicate and subtle influence of the good 
spirit finds fruitful fields in which to plant the seeds of truth 
and faith in God! These testimonies, the girls discover, are 
not gained through any process of reasoning but through 
the pure emotions of the willing human heart. Moreover, 
they find that after that testimony has once been gained, it is 
lost only through vanity or ambition, neglect or sin. We may 
watch the effect of that lesson burned into the heart of the 
Mormon girl that the standard of truth is forever fixed on the 
life and mission of the Lord Jesus Christ; and when we once 
see that standard set up in the girl's soul, it would needs be 
covered fathoms deep with sin or willful deception to blot 
out its brightness. We sigh for the careless president who 
seeks to lighten her spiritual task by introducing formal 
subjects and prepared study into her "testimony meetings!" 
Out of the fullness of her own heart, the richness of her own 
testimony, must she call for the girls to follow her leadership. 
Add now to this scene all the combined social and edu- 
cational labors of the two ward Mutual boards; visualize the 


balls and the parties, the suppers and the home-prepared 
theatricals, which form the very bulwark of society in the 
various wards, and you have some idea of the present activ- 
ities of the local ward Mutual Improvement Association; 
and at the conclusion we are filled with conviction that herein 
has been found the solution for the problem of protecting and 
developing- the youth in paths of pleasant righteousness. How 
good is the Lord! 

Pay we now a visit to the stake officers, who preside in 
their precinct with the same authority as do the General Board 
over the stakes. This young lady who acts as president over 
the stake we are just now visiting, is more than likely one of 
that vast corps of former school-teachers now married who is 
trying to make her avocation fit easily and smoothly in with 
her vocation. She is wife and mother, no doubt, but that only 
makes her the better able to mother the ward officials who 
are under her jurisdiction. She must needs move with celerity 
about her home, for beside the usual washing and ironing, 
sweeping and dusting, there are meetings of various wards 
to visit each week, a single officers' meeting of her own 
board, and once a month there is the conjoint officers' meet- 
ings, followed by the separate general ward officers' assembly. 
Besides, there are always vacancies to fill, candidates to con- 
sider, plans to adopt and suggestions to offer as to amuse- 
ments, or fund-raising; missionaries to select; but thanks be 
to the kind Father who presides over the destinies of the 
Mutual girls in Zion, so far there have been no quarrels to 
adjust nor bickerings to suppress. This president is assisted, 
you note, by two other young women, one chosen perchance 
for the solid dignity of her character and the burning testi- 
mony of her soul -life; another, it maybe, is gifted in language 
and can preach the word in power to the girls as she visits 
about. Add to these the bright little secretary of the stake, 
and the musical and Journal officers, with the librarian and 

308 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

aids, and you have another large body of active women, each 
vieing with the other in good deeds, unselfish devotion and 
active service. The three who preside in this stake have 
passed some time ago the giggling, effervescent age; school- 
teaching or marriage with consequent motherhood have stilled 
the vague temptations of- youth, and have set their feet on 
the upward ladder of progressive life. These busy young 
women find the natural womanly ambition to help in the mod- 
ern utilitarian world's work fulfilled in the Mutual Improve- 
ment Associations. ' Contrary to the custom of the world, 
these girls have not sought nor desired position; therefore, 
they fulfill their public duties without much if any self- 
consciousness. The line of effort is, first, to be the girl-woman- 
wife-mother, and then if possible to do much in the field of 
mutual improvement endeavor. They find, it is true, a larger 
sphere, a deeper note of self -sacrifice, in the work of the associa- 
tions; yet must the girl- woman not be deprived of the personal 
home opportunities, nor shall she stultify her growth upward in 
wifehood and motherhood. You would doubtless find, if you 
peeped into the homes of these girl stake -officials, either a 
grandmother, or mother, and not seldom the good-natured 
young husband of the house, watching the sleeping babies 
while the young mother is away Tuesday evenings or Sunday 
mornings at her work in the Mutuals. These stake officials 
find their duties as strenuous and as complex as are those per- 
formed by the General Board. But the stakes have one great 
advantage: all work is mapped out lessons prepared and print- 
ed, and roll and record books are given them by the general 
officers. There are no stake headquarters, although there are 
many good stake libraries; but all are welcome to accommoda- 
tions in the various ward and stake houses or churches. 

Leaving therefore the ward and stake workers, shall we 
now take a glimpse at the labors of today performed by the 


thirty odd women whose names appear on the roster of the 
General Board of the M. I. A.? 

Come into the Bishop's building- north entrance, please 
take the elevator past the second floor where are the Relief 
Society rooms, and Young- Men's Mutual Improvement As- 
sociation rooms, and get off at the third floor. Half way down 
the long hall are the sumptuous quarters of the Primary As- 
sociation on the north and the place we are seeking is on the 
south side. The first door leads to the editorial office of the 
Young Woman ' s Journal. When you turn the heavy bronze 
knob, and swing the massive oaken door inward, you see the 
editor surrounded with her luxurious desk, tables and book- 
cases. She may be another personality by and by, but ever 
will go on the good work done there. You are somewhat so- 
bered by the thought that a cause swallows up individuality 
and stifles personality; yet the knowledge of a divine balance 
to be daily struck in the adjustment of God's plan comforts 
you, and you shake hands with the clear-eyed young woman 
sitting at the editorial desk and then turn to the hall again 
and enter the larger doors which lead to the general offices. 

What a jovial, restless, active atmosphere blows upon 
you at this threshold! Well, what would you? The young 
woman who greets you in these business offices of the Journal 
is the business manager of that prosperous magazine. There 
are 15,000 magazines to mail monthly, accounts to keep, 
complaints to hear, rights to adjust, letters to answer, and 
visitors to greet. Hands and feet are always busy, tongue is 
seldom rested, brain is never idle. But you are welcome, 
whoever you are, come right in. The general secretary, did 
you say? Yes, she is in the inner rooms. And herein you 
pass, greeting the secretary with the respect her dignified 
composure demands. She has her hundreds, nay thousands, 
of letters to answer, records to keep, tickets for visiting Board 
members to purchase, routes to look up, instructions to pre- 

310 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

pare, minutes to keep and record, appointments to make, and 
telephone messages to send and receive every hour in the day. 

The General Board? Yes. They are all in the assembly 
hall you are welcome within! The beautiful room with its 
elegant furnishings escapes your attention, for your eyes are 
drawn to the circle of women about the long table, headed by 
their dignified president. The opening song and the prayer 
are over, the roll is called, minutes are read, and then fol- 
lows the day's regular business. It is Thursday afternoon, 
you remember, the day so long set apart as Board meeting 
day, and you sit down prepared to listen with quiet attention. 
The Guide committee may report; discussion and suggestion 
follow. Or there may be letters from the National Council 
of Women of the U. S. There may be plans for the summer 
conventions, or the June conference. The library committee 
may bring in new lists of books for revisal and correction. 
Reports from the various conferences visited take much time 
and patience. There may be letters and changes in stake 
appointments or officers. All these, or a portion of them, 
require much consideration and discussion. You could wish 
at times that there was a touch of humor, a gleam of wit, to 
lighten the seriousness of this weekly conclave. It is never 
a crime, however albeit it sometimes is a great strain to 
take ourselves and our duties always with profound serious- 
ness. Y 7 et as you listen to the composed discussions, the 
respectful suggestions, and note the absence of personal am- 
bition, envy and intrigue, you are compelled to a greater or 
less meed of admiration for the women and the methods which 
can produce these results. 

Some unusual force has been at work here; you can find 
nothing to parallel it in the conduct of women's clubs and 
societies in the world today. What is that power? What are 
the causes that have brought about these results? This rec- 
ord has endeavored to answer that question, to set forth the 


causes which have operated to produce the successful Y. L. 
M. I. A. of this people. The past is spread before you, the 
future is hid in eternity. But as the corn follows the plant- 
ing- of the seed, so love, unity, and self-control follow the 
planting- of righteousness in the human heart. 

Here, then, we may close this imperfect record of an 
almost perfect organization an organization with a wonder- 
ful history behind it and with an unlimited future ahead of it. 
In leaving this portion of God's work, there is one over- 
mastering thought which fills the mind: how perfectly our 
Father understands the possibilities of growth and progress! 
No creeping moss gathers about the roots of the tree of life; 
but activity, growth, and motion beget change, evolution and 
development; all these are the attributes of the work of God. 
Around this thought g-athers another akin to it: our Father 
does all His work through natural and simple means; the 
weakness and strength of men are weighed in His hands, and 
made to contribute to the final sum of progress; men, having- 
their agency, can go constantly forward or constantly back- 
ward; or they can take that zig-zag course so often taken by 
weak mortality; but the great Arbiter of all our destinies will 
bring every foot within the pale of truth, soon or late, now or 
then. What the Mutual Improvement Associations of Zion 
have meant to the girls cannot be told in words. What are 
the results? Look you at the individuals; let them tell the 
tale. Not one soul in Zion has failed to feel either the direct 
or indirect effects of this powerful factor among the youth of 
our people. All have been mutually helped, mutually 
blessed, and mutually improved what more can be added? 
Only a song of gratitude and praise to that Father, who, in 
blessing and remembering His sons, forgot not to bless and 
remember His daughters. 


i-lISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 


One of the* famous family which gave to the world 
the Prophet Joseph Smith, her grandfather being Judge 
Elias Smith, and being likewise a granddaughter of 


President Wilford Woodruff, it is not strange that Lucy 
Woodruff Smith is molded to noblest forms of spiritual worth. 
She first saw the light away down on the Muddy Mission, 
where her parents were suffering and struggling with that 


handful of refugees sent by President Brig-ham Young and 
Apostle Erastus Snow to create a civilization in the hot wil- 
derness of that then forbidding country. But she inherited 
the pluck and patience of her parents, and after all, what do 
environments matter, if the soul be true and the body be 
strong? Lucy was born on the 10th of January, 1869, and 
was the daughter of Wilford Woodruff, Jr., and of Emily J. 
Smith. All her life she has kept the Word of Wisdom. 
Since she was ten years old she has been a strict tithepayer. 
She has never owed the Lord one cent; all her life she has 
loved the Lord; all her life she has served her kind. And 
yet, she, too, must pass through the fire of affliction. 

Lucy recalls with peculiar pleasure the organization of a 
Primary Retrenchment Association, effected through her 
cousin Alice Merrill, in the prayer-room of the old Historian's 
Office in the year 1876, where dwelt Alice with her grand- 
parents. Here the tiny tots met, spoke of things religious, 
or listened to simple exhortations delivered by themselves 
and an occasional invited visitor. This society antedates the 
Primary Associations, and yet was modeled upon the same 

Lucy married her distant cousin, George Albert Smith, 
grandson and namesake of President George A. Smith, 
May 25th, 1892. She has had three children and has moth- 
ered eight others. Her home life is ideal; for the only 
law is that of love and constant kindness between parents 
and children, and with friends and acquaintances. 

Lucy has not confined her labors to her home, but like 
so many of our bright young matrons, she has enlarged her 
sphere, and the call of the priesthood has placed many public 
burdens upon her. In 1887, she was chosen to act as ward 
president of the Y. L. M. I. A. of the Seventeenth ward. 
Then, in 1894, two years after her marriage, she was elected 
treasurer for the stake Y. L. M. I. A. When the Salt Lake 
stake was first divided Lucy was chosen to act as second 
counselor to Nellie C. Taylor in the Salt Lake stake 
board. Here she labored, with great fidelity, initia- 
tive and resourcefulness, until the further division of the 
city into four stakes, when she was selected to fill the 
position of president of the Salt Lake stake Y. L. M. 
I. A. She was called to act as a member of the General 

314 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Board of the whole Association in October, 1908; and here 
she still labors. In every one of these positions Lucy Wood- 
ruff Smith has been successful and energetic; she has toiled 
with heart and brain, with body and nerve; and what she has 
done not even the annals of the society may betray. For she 
has filled full to 'overflowing every measure meted out to her 
for loving service, in her home, in her ward and in her public 
duties. That she is now near breaking down under the 
strain, is due as much to her generous and lavish serv- 
ice towards her own family as to that same measure which 
she has meted out in her public duties. While with her hus- 
band in the Southern States, she assisted him in his duties 
as the secretary of the mission. Lucy was of great assistance 
in clerical labor; and but for her another clerk would have 
been necessary in the office. 

The key-note of Lucy Smith's character is the power 
to hear and obey the promptings of the Spirit of the Lord.. 
This was her grandfather Wilford Woodruff's great gift, and 
it is her own in large degree. In her family life, she has 
always been guided by that still small voice, whose decrees 
are sometimes inscrutable, but whose dictates never fail. It 
is this inner light which makes that charm and radiance about 
her home and which has made it possible for both parents to 
fight for life in the face of overwhelming odds . 

It would be unjust to close this sketch without adding a 
tribute to the young Apostle, George A. Smith, who has given 
not only his wife help, encouragement and support in all her 
home and public duties, but who has been generous in his 
assistance and spiritual support to every woman in this Church. 
Surely the girls of the Mutual have much to thank George 
A. Smith for, for he has been a rod and a staff to both 
wings of Mutual endeavor; and especially, in all public and 
private meetings of those organizations, his voice is ever 
raised to advance woman's development and woman's pos- 
sibilities. He has made it a beautiful thing for all women to 
work by his side, for his heartfelt tributes to the mothers 
and daughters of his people are founded on the rock of his 
own unselfish, manly dignity and the purity and uprightness 
of his whole life. Of such indeed we have all too few 
amongst any people. God lengthen his life till his hair is 
white and his years are as a ripened sheaf of corn! 




Jane Ballantyne Anderson was born in Salt Lake City, 
Utah, February 10th, 1861. Her father was Richard Ballan- 
tyne, founder of the Latter-day Saints' Sunday Schools, who 


emigrated from Scotland, in 1843. Her mother was Mary 
Pearce, a native of England, who came to Utah in 1855. The 
family moved to Ogfden when Jane was yet a child, and 
later to Ogden Valley where Elder Ballantyne presided over 
Eden, a little settlement in the north end of the valley. 

316 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

In those early days there was little else than the native 
wilderness of mountain nature surrounding the cabins of the 
pioneers. The voice of the wolf and the howl of -the coyote 
were the only sounds that broke the silence. But the young 
girl loved to roam the native meadows, wade the clear 
streams, climb the hills, and to divide with the bear and the 
Indian the wild cherry and the service-berry. In these early 
years she thus imbibed that intense love for the mountains 
which has grown to a passion with her. These wild environ- 
ments, too, and the need to shift for one's self, impressed her 
with a love of nature and the outdoor life, and with strength 
and independence of character. From early childhood she 
received strict training in household work, and hence industry 
and thrift were strongly impressed upon her life. 

She attended the district school of the settlement, where 
she obtained such a knowledge of the three R's as was then 
common in the villages of northern Utah. With a fondness 
for education, she did well in her classes, and later got per- 
mission to attend a higher private academy in Ogden, con- 
ducted by Prof. L. F. Moench. In 1879 she taught a district 
school in Riverdale, and the year following in Uintah, closing 
her experience in the schoolroom in Hooper, in 1880. 
Wherever she taught her lovable yet firm character attracted 
the admiration of parents and children alike, and this ex- 
perience gave her opportunity to exercise her pronounced 
natural gift ability to teach and govern children. A number 
of hitherto ungovernable youngsters became her lasting 
friends, and among her best students were boys who were 
generally considered hard to handle. 

In 1881 June 29th she was happily married to Edward 
H. Anderson. They have an interesting family of six sons 
and one daughter, upon all of whom she has impressed her 
lovable nature. With true love she has devoted her life to 
their welfare and training so that whatever the results may 
be no fault can ever be laid at the door of the mother. 

Aside from her arduous family duties she has found time 
to keep her own mind in touch with the progress of the world, 
and to devote some thought and action to public duties. 
From June 1, 1885, till the division of the ward, she acted as 
second counselor to Rose Canfieldin the Fourth ward, Ogden, 
Y. L. M. I. A.; and later as first counselor to Mariana Belnap 


in the same ward. She also acted as teacher of one of the 
classes under Presidents Isabella Foulger and Martha Wright. 
In a tribute of love and esteem tendered to her by her fellow 
officers on her departure for Salt Lake City, they commend 
her for her "gentle but firm manner of instruction," her 
"faith and devotion," her "tender watchcare over her aged 
mother," her "devotion to the principles of the gospel," and 
her faithfulness in teaching "our girls." She also took part 
in gathering statistics of women's work and conditions for the 
World's Fair, Chicago, 1893, and at times takes some interest 
in political matters. 

The family removed to Salt Lake City in 1901; and two 
years later Mrs. Anderson was appointed teacher in the 
Junior class in the Sugar ward, Y. L. M. I. A., under Pres- 
ident Lois Taylor, in which position she succeeded admirably. 
On March 5, 1905, she was chosen as president of the Sugar 
ward Y. L. M. I. A. For three years she directed the as- 
sociation with great success, but in September, 1908, was 
compelled to resign owing to her mother's ill health which 
required her services at home. It was in October following 
that she was chosen a member of the General Board Y, L. 
M. I. A., to which position she was set apart by President 
John R. Winder, November 5. In this position she has 
visited a number of stakes, and been in attendance quite 
regularly at the councils of the Board. 


An engaging personality, a mingling of personal and 
spiritual beauty, has given to Sister Edith Rossiter Lovesy 
the power to attract. Simple and sincere devotion to pure 
ideals makes her charm all the more a precious magnet with 
which to draw the young. 

She was born in Salt Lake City, January 29th, 1876, of 
the best of English yeoman stock, her father being the well 
known and successful business man, William A. Rossiter, 
and her mother, Eliza Crabtree, daughter of that sturdy 
English pioneer, Charles Crabtree. 

Edith was a worker in all the auxiliary institutions of 
the Church. She was given a class in Sunday School at the early 

318 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

age of fifteen years, and was enrolled in the Mutual as soon 
as her age would permit. 

She married, at the age of twenty, W. H. Lovesy, a young 
business man of Salt Lake City. She moved to the Second 


ward at the time of her marriage, and was chosen as counselor 
in the Y. L. M. I. A. Here she labored until her husband 
took her with him to Pocatello, in 1901, where they lived for 
seven years. Sister Lovesy at once entered into the life and 
atmosphere about her, determined with all the modest energy 
of her unselfish soul to help the girls of her new home. 


She was asked to serve as secretary of Pocatello stake Young- 
Ladies Mutual Improvement Association, and while holding 
this position she also labored as a local officer, being- president 
of the Pocatello ward association. In 1906, five years later, 
she was made president of the stake Mutual Improvement 
Association, and served loyally and with success in that office 
until her return to Salt Lake City, in 1908. 

She made a deep impression on the girls of her stake, 
and news of her success was carried often to the General Board 
in Salt Lake City, so that when she returned to the city of 
her birth President Martha H. Tingfey was desirous of adding: 
this bright young- woman to those already on the General 
Board. At the October conference of 1908, Sister Lovesy was 
sustained as a member of the General Board, and has proved 
herself efficient and adaptable to the needs of her new position. 

Mrs. Lovesy is a reader of the best literature. She and 
her husband have collected a library of choice selection. Her 
father was a tender supervisor of his children's daily lives 
and book education. 

It is impossible for Edith R. Lovesy to retain wounded 
feeling's, or blind suspicions; she learned at her mother's knee, 
and at her father's council table, to ask and receive, as also 
to offer and to bestow that full pardon for mistakes and 
wounds which carries with it the fuller forgiveness of forget- 
fulness. Her own heart made thus tender, Sister Lovesy 
would suffer much with the thoug-ht that perchance she had 
wounded another. One other deep lesson of early childhood 
was the love of truth; to tell the truth was part of her very 
life and up-bringing-. For all these and many other life 
lessons she lavishes a wealth of loving: gratitude upon the 
faithful father and mother who guided her early youth . 


Letitia Thomas Teasdale was born October 23d, 1876, 
in Franklin, Idaho. Her father was Preston Thomas, who 
came of American stock. Her mother was Maria Hadland, 
of English birth. Letitia 's father died when she was a babe 
of eight months, but she was reared most tenderly and care- 
fully by her mother, who was a remarkably strong, cour- 
ageous and true woman. Mrs. Thomas reared nine children, 

320 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

six girls and three boys; and at the time of her death she had 
seventy-two descendents, not one of whom had lost the faith. 
The following beautiful tribute is paid to this mother in Israel 
by her daughter Letitia: 


"I never heard my mother complain or question the 
purposes of the Lord. Her faith was wonderful and she so 
impressed us with the love of right doing and loyalty to our 
religion that the first thought of her children has been what 
does the Lord require of us? She was the third^ wife of my 


father, and through all her trials I never heard* her say one 
word which would weaken the faith of her children. While 
my father was also a true, faithful Latter-day Saint, strong 
of purpose and with much natural refinement, I feel that it is 
to my dear mother chiefly that we owe the unyielding faith 
which we all more or less possess. Her teachings and her 
example have been my life's guiding star." 

Letitia's childhood was spent on a farm. At the age of 
fourteen she entered the Brigham Young College of Logan, 
which she attended three years. She began teaching school in 
Idaho when eighteen years of age. Removing with her family 
to Canada next year, she remained there two years, teaching 
school, and holding the position of aid in the Y. L. M. I. A. 
of Cardston, and of kindergarten teacher in the Sunday 
Schools. She returned to Utah in 1898, and taught school 
in Utah county. She there met Apostle George Teasdale 
and was married to him in the Logan Temple on the 17th of 
May, 1900. This girl- wife assumed the care of five children, 
the youngest being but four years old. They made their 
home in Nephi for three years, and while there Mrs. Teasdale 
acted as stake aid in the Y. L. M. I. A. one year, served one 
year as second counselor in the stake board of the same as- 
sociation and one year as first counselor to the president of 
the Relief Society of Juab stake. Mrs. Teasdale left Nephi 
in 1903 to join her husband who had gone to Mexico to regain 
his shattered health. They remained there two years and 
eight months. Returning to Salt Lake City in 1906 they 
made another home. This time the change was to be partic- 
ularly sad; for a year later, in May, 1907, Mrs. Teasdale 
was called to part with her mother, who died at her home. 
Just one week from the day her mother was buried she saw 
her noble husband laid to rest. Who can measure the grief 
of that soul-stricken wife and daughter! 

Mrs. Teasdale was called to act as first counselor to Mrs. 
Richards of the Sugar House Relief Society in the spring of 
1908; and in October, 1908, she was placed upon the Gen- 
eral Board of the Y. L. M. I. A. 

The young widow decided to further prepare herself for 
teaching, accordingly in 1909 she went to Chicago to take a 
course in the Columbia College of Expression, for ever 
since her girlhood, she has been a student of elocution and 


322 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

literature. She has traveled into almost every stake of Zion 
with her husband, and for Mutual Improvement work. 

Letitia Teasdale is of commanding: presence. She is 
possessed of a natural reserve and dignity which is so mel- 
lowed by an inner spiritual gflow that it pleases all who come 
to know her well. 


When President Tinge y chose Miss Bennion to act upon 
the General Board of the Y. L. M. I. A., there was surely 
no mistake made. That young- woman was not at home at 
the time, which was during the October conference of 1908 
she was acting as a missionary in the world, and was thus 
making wide preparation for her future enlarged sphere. 

Miss Bennion was born atTaylorsville, Salt Lake county, 
Utah, and is the daughter of Samuel R. and Mary P. Bennion. 
Her parents are of English descent, but the father was born 
in Nauvoo. He followed Brigham Young in that wonderful 
exodus to the western wilds, in 1847, and finally settled in 
Taylorsville. This girl has had splendid chances for being 
directed in the right way during youth and childhood. We 
are often reminded of the saying of Nephi in the opening 
words of the Book of Mormon when contemplating the lives 
of the youth of Zion "I Nephi, having been born of goodly 
parents." Laura Bennion comes in this class by right of 
inheritance on both sides. She early showed the upright, 
devoted traits which made of her a good Sunday School child, 
a faithful Primary pupil, and later, a devoted Mutual worker. 

Miss Bennion acted as secretary of the Primary As- 
sociation when but a child; then she was chosen as counselor; 
next came her advancement to the position of counselor in 
the Mutual, which happened November 7th, 1895. She 
accepted the position of president of that association 
January 19th, 1904, and there acted with singular success 
and direct results till called upon her mission. She 
was also active for seven years in the board of Granite stake 
as an aid to Mrs. Zina B. Cannon, at the end of which time 
she received her missionary call and went out into the world 
with undaunted faith and trust. 

Indeed, it may be said of Miss Bennion that faith, the 


genuine old-fashioned type that increases joy, makes sorrow 
bearable, that sets God and the priesthood before the learning: 
of men, is a dominant note in her character. 

It is good to study the lives of young- women who are 


set up for standards in Zion. The trifles of life are often the 
milestones which point the way onward. When a child, Laura 
had borrowed her mother's earring's; and with them in her 
ears, she went to bathe in the river Jordan flowing- by her 
home. Alas, while sporting- in the water, waist-deep, one of 
the precious jewels fell into the stream. The pain and con- 

324 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

sternation of the child can be imagined by girl-readers. What 
was to be done? Without hesitation, the little Laura begged 
her girl-friends to join with her in an earnest prayer to God 
for help in finding the lost trinket. Singular as it may seem, 
as soon as the children arose, Laura went to the stream and 
found her earring lying at the bottom of the river. Such 
faith was hers, and such she retains through her active 
religious career. 

Miss Bennion was sent out to the Northern States mission 
on January 23d, 1907. She was detailed to go almost at 
once to labor with Miss Ida Alleman, of Springville, in that 
city of vivid and never-dying interest to the Saints Nauvoo 
the Beautiful. 

It was the month of February, just sixty-one years since 
that historic exodus by Brigham Young and the Saints, and as 
then, the river was a churning mass of ice-blocks and turbid 
water. The girls were obliged to cross the mighty river one 
mile wide at this point in a small skiff. And as they twisted 
and turned to the right and to the left, the biting wind in their 
faces and their bodies numbed with the freezing cold how 
clear the vision of that other crossing rose before their eyes 
and the quick sob of sympathy swelled in their throats 
while the tears coursed down their cheeks. 

When the girls reached Nauvoo, to be warmed and fed 
and comforted by the small branch now raised up in that 
place, it was with feelings akin to awe that they began their 
own modest womanly ministry in homes builded by the men 
and women who had known and associated with the Prophet 
Joseph Smith, and who saw him in life and mourned him 
when brought back from cruel Carthage to his burial in the 
stricken city of Nauvoo. Here, then, they labored for four 
months assisting to build the little branch then numbering 
seventeen souls. Laura left Nauvoo to work in Chicago, then 
in Joliet and Milwaukee, working in the organizations, 
visiting the Saints, and spending much time in visiting those 
friends which the elders had made while tracting. Here she 
labored for twenty-three months, and then was released to 
return to Zion. 

The ideal girl character must hold one exquisite germ 
for future perfect development that of maternal tenderness 
and pure renunciation. Such a trait marks indelibly the 


soul of Laura Bennion. Not long- after returning home, six 
children of her sister, Mrs. Nora Diamond, were left 
motherless. With the instant decision of character which is 
so pronounced a part of her character she took upon herself 
the care of the motherless children the eldest thirteen and 
the youngest but a baby. From that day to this, Laura has 
been a devoted guardian of the children; and her sweet self- 
effacement could find no better expression than in this noble 
work. Laura is entirely without egotism, or self-glorification. 
The world lies outside and about her, and is too big in its 
daily demands to permit of selfish introspection or narrow 
aims. If God has been good to her, she will "pass it on." 
Such is her character, such her happy daily legend. Yet is 
she strong and vital in word and deed. But so excellent a 
regard has she for the unities of life, that she has learned, all 
unconsciously, to estimate values and to secure the womanly 
poise which makes a heaven of the poorest house, and gives 
one glimpses of that paradise where homes will be eternal. 





THE organization of the Cardston Association atCardston, 
Canada, in what was then known as the Canadian mis- 
sion, was the be- 
ginning of Mutual 
work in the Al- 
berta stake. This 
organization was 
effected Nov. 22d, 
1887, by the pres- 
ident of that mis- 
sion, Charles O. 
Card. His wife, 
Zina Y. Card, 
the well-known 
daughter of Zina 
D. Young, was 
chosen president. 
The following 
year she chose two 
counselors, Katie 
Brown and Anne 
Cheney. The sec- 
retary was Jane S. 
Woolf. These sis- 
ters were set apart 
by Apostles F. M. 
Lyman and John 
W.Taylor. Atthat 
time, Oct. 8, 1888, 
there were nine 
members enrolled. 
The scriptures ZINA Y ' CARD ' 



formed the basis of their studies, and the meetings were a great 
blessing to the people. The work of Sister Card in this mis- 
sion can never be properly estimated. She was the social 
life, soul, and mainspring of the whole colony. Her spiritual 
labors were so closely and delicately interwoven with her 
social efforts, that the most skillful observer could not draw 
any line of distinction. She was hostess to every homesick, 
longing emigrant, nurse for the sick and dying, provider for 

the destitute, and a well- 
spring of comfort and sun- 
shine for every soul in Can- 
ada, of every class and creed. 
So marked an impression did 
she make upon the visiting 
Canadian government officials 
that many privileges and 
concessions of great impor- 
tance to the young colonies 
were given by the Canadian 
authorities because of their 
acquaintance and admiration 
for this splendid pioneer. 

The Alberta Y. L. M. 
I. A., as a stake association, 
was organized Aug. 29th, 
1894, atCardston, by Apostle 
John W. Taylor with Sister 
Card a s stake president. 
Nine years later, after her 
removal to Utah, the stake 
board was reorganized, Sept. 
6, 1903, at Cardston, by President Joseph F. Smith; Sisters 
Alice K. Smith and Adella W. Eardley of the General Board 
of Y. L. M. I. A. were in attendance. Sister Annie D. Snow 
was chosen president, and she is still acting, her efficiency 
and faithfulness having endeared her to all her associates. 

The following sisters have acted as officers on the stake 
board: presidents Zina Y. Card, Annie D. Snow; as coun- 
selors Attena Williams, Rhoda Duce, and Armenia Lee; as 
secretaries Annie D. Snow, Rose Card, Ethel D. Woolf and 
Zina C. Brown; as treasurers Sarah Hinman, Ella Packer, 


328 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Belle Duce, Hattie Woolf and Ethel D. Woolf; as librarians- 
Dora Jacobs, Mary L. Ibey; as aids Susie Winder Hinman, 
Mary A. Harker, Jennie B. Knight, Armenia Lee, Virgie 
Jordan, Eugenia Rampton, Zina Woolf and Orrilla Woolf. 

The membership of this stake is indicative of the rapid 
growth achieved in our colonies. In 1894, the membership 
of the whole stake association was only 83; in 1899, it had 
increased to 205; while in 1910 there are 355 this, too, not- 
withstanding the fact that in 1902 the stake was divided, the 
eastern part of the mission being called the Taylor stake. If 
there had been no division the membership in Alberta would 
have been double what it now is. 

The board is divided into committees, who take charge 
of special lines of work. Circumstances have compelled many 
changes in the personnel; but perfect harmony has always 
existed and the labors of the board members have been greatly 
prospered; especially prized are the faithfiil labors of Presi- 
dent Annie D. Snow. The thirteen towns comprised in the 
stake are visited mostly by team, the farthest town being 110 
miles from Cardston. The traveling library is not large; it 
contains only 208 books, but these are well chosen, and put 
to good use. The board has adopted the plan of having a con- 
cert at every regular conference, in which all the ward asso- 
ciations take part. There is also a concert or theater given in 
the winter. The proceeds of these several entertainments are 
used for stake expenses. The concerts are also useful in arous- 
ing interest among the girls, and are provocative of a healthy 
spirit of emulation. 


The organization of the Alpine stake was effected Jan. 
20th, 1901, at American Fork, Utah Co., under the direction 
of Apostle Heber J. Grant. At this time, the stake board of 
the Y. L. M. I. A. was organized, with the following officers: 
Lydia B. Lund, president; Cordelia P. Thorne, first coun- 
selor; Liza Chipman, second counselor; Luella E. Thorne, 
secretary and treasurer; Sarah T. Evans, Pauline E. Brown, 
aids. At the close of the first year of the organization, 
there were thirteen ward associations with a membership of 
520 enrolled. 

This stake is situated in the north end of Utah valley, 




and was for many years a part of the Utah stake. The pro- 
gressive and active people who compose the various towns 
could but make one of the best and liveliest stakes in the 
Church, and the Y. L.M.I. A. shares in the 
general up-to-date atmosphere. The girls 
are, many of them, graduates of the 
Brigham Young University, and possess 
in addition to their scholastic training the 
modest virtues of comely young woman- 

When the original Utah stake was di- 
vided, the funds belonging to the Y. L. 
M. I. A. were distributed, the new Alpine 
stake receiving: $15.00. 
The first purchase was a 
good record book, and 
the important duty of 
keeping faithful and accurate records of 
all work done and meetings held was 
begun. This business-like policy has been 
maintained through the intervening years. 
The past few summers the M. I. girls 
have organized sewing classes in the wards, 
which have proved very successful, and the 
organization looks with justifiable hope 
into a future where there is naught but 
good works and prosperity. 
The following officers have acted on the stake board: 
presidents Lydia B. Lund, Emma Larson and Louisa R. 
Miller; counselors Cordelia P. Thorne,Liza Chipman, Louisa 
R. Miller, Laura Boley and Annie M. Stookey; secretaries and 
treasurers Luella E. Thome and Pauline E. Brown; aids 
Louise R. Miller, Sarah Taylor Evans, Pauline Brown, 
Hattie Beck, Emerett Smith, Laura Boley, Susie Whipple, 
Eleonore M. Blackhurst, Lucy H. Wright, Amanda Russon, 
Agnes Huish and Iva Adams. 


The Bannock stake formerly comprised all the country 
within the limits of the present Bingham, Pocatello, Bannock, 
Fremont, Rigby, Yellowstone and Teton stakes of Zion; 




therefore the early history of all of these stakes is largely 
that of Bannock. 

jlpUJjtfrm The Y. L. M. I. A. of the 

Bannock stake was organized 
^L February 18, 1887, with the 

following- officers: Susie 
Poole, president; Mary A. 
|k Ricks and Mary A. Raymond, 
i|| counselors ;SusieL. Stephens, 
secretary; and Martha Ricks, 
treasurer. Before this time 
there were associations in a 
number of the wards, viz., 
Menan, Rexburg, Parker, 
Teton, Lyman, Louisville, 
Labelle, and Eagle Rock. 
Sister Poole was succeeded 
within a year's time by Sister 
Mary A. Ricks, who presided 
for four years with her asso- 
ciated officers. In 1891, Sis- 
ter Ellen M . Ricks was made 
president, and for ten years 
she labored in season and 
out of season for the benefit of the girls in her scattered stake, 
holding jurisdiction over the whole stake about seven years, 
and then over Fremont after the stakes were divided. Her 
gentle and peace-loving influence was felt wherever she 
went, and her name is reverenced as much today as it ever 
was in her active incumbency of office. 

The local associations, as well as the general member- 
ship of the stake, grew during this period of ten years, until 
1898, when it was deemed advisable to divide the stake into 
two portions. Accordingly, the Fremont stake was created 
out of the northern half of Bannock stake. The former stake 
board, with Pres. Ellen M. Ricks, who lived in Rexburg, now 
the chief city of Fremont stake, took up the divided work of 
the newly named stake. 

A new organization of the Y. L. M. I. A. of Bannock 
stake was effected under the supervision of Apostles Heber 
J. Grant, MarrinerW. Merrill and Matthias F.Cowley, July 25th 




1898. Mrs. Effie P. Eldredge was sustained as president of 
the board. On August 17th, of the same year, Sisters Dessie 
Andrus and Olive Hale werejchosen as her counselors, with 
Edna M. Smith as secretary 
and treasurer. Positions on 
the board have been occupied 
as follows: as presidents 
Effie P. Eldredge, Minnie 
Lau Rose, Louise Horsley 
and Mary . Bassett; coun- 
selors Dessie Andrus, Olive 
Hale, Elizabeth Larkins, C. 
V. Nelson, Louise Horsley, 
Sarah Hatch, Gertrude Call, 
Flora Pond, Aletta H. Soren- 
sen. Emma Williams and 
SarahMerrill ; secretaries and 
treasurers Edna M. Smith, 
Amy Larkins, NervaL. Rose, 
Beatrice Lau, Bergetta 
Hogan, Mary E. Rodeback, 
Cora Hale and Nellie Fow- 
ler; as aids Dora Barlow, 
Lutie Bassett Swenson, Eliz- 
abeth Larkins, Harriet Chris- 
tensen, Cora Larkins, Minnie 

Sterrett, C. V. Nelson, Emma Williams and Sarah Hatch; 
organists Charlotte Tohnan Meekam, Melfta Pond; libra- 
rian Millie Corbet. 

The first stake enrollment showed 150 members; in 
1910 there are 309 members. 

This new stake was not organized until after Guides were 
issued, and therefore their work has gone along prescribed 
lines. But they have shown their originality in the various 
excellent written and printed essays read, and in the frequent 
musical selections interspersed with their regular programs. 
The associations started out, as did most others, with an 
empty treasury: but they have now an excellent set of record 
books, nearly 100 books in the traveling library, and a good 
amount of cash in the bank. There are thirteen wards in the 
stake, all of them within 25 miles of the headquarters at 




Thatcher. The stake officers visit their branches frequently, 
but their chief difficulty lies in the scarcity of young women. 
A treasured memory in this stake is the visit of Pres- 
ident Elmina S. Taylor, who came to a conference held in 
Soda Spring's, in the summer of 1899. Although weak in 
numbers, this stake is strong in activity and good works. 


This section of country was contained for a long time in 
the two stakes, Malad and Box Elder, seven wards, 

Thatcher, Both well, Gar- 
land, East Garland, Beaver 
Dam , Dewey ville andElwood 
wards being taken from the 
Box Elder stake. But as 
settlers began to elbow each 
other across the desert 
reaches, and farms we/e cut 
up into larger and larger 
towns, the long winding 
valley farms and towns were 
gathered into a stake of their 
own by the Church author- 
ities. This was done on the 
llth of October, 1908; so 
that we have now a full- 
fledged stake Y. L. M. I. A. 
in Bear River. At the pres- 
ent time there are twelve 
associations and a glance at 
the board will show that 
ROSE B. VANFLEET. every detail of the Mutual 

work has been considered 

and provided for. The board then organized was: pres- 
ident Rose B. Vanfleet; counselors Celia M. Grover and 
Essie E. Folger; secretary La Von Smith; treasurer 
Hilda Nordquist; librarian Pearl Folger; organist Olive 
Hall; chorister Clara C. Mowery; aids Sarah T. Hansen, 
Minta Garn, Celestia C. Hunsaker and Meda Johnson. There 
have been a few changes, even in this short time, and Violette 


T. Wing- is now secretary, and Elizabeth M. King- is the 
treasurer. They have an assistant chorister, Lavonnah 
Johnson and Senior and Junior class leaders in Hilda Nord- 
quist and Maud Sorensen. 

It is delightful to contemplate the readiness with which 
our people expand and adjust themselves to new and ever 
progressing- conditions; new workers spring-ing- up to take 
the places in the new fields of labor, and each equal to his or 
her task under the blessing- of the Lord. 


The organization of the Y. L. M. I. A. of this stake was 
effected February 8, 1879, by the late Apostle Charles C. 
Rich, whose daughter, Mrs. Nancy E. Pugmire, was called 
to preside. Her counselors were Amy E. Cook and Alice M. 
Rich. Mrs. Elizabeth M. Hart was appointed secretary, and 
Elizabeth Pugmire Rich, treasurer. The stake organization 
extended into Utah on the south and Wyoming 1 on the east. 
It comprised twenty -one associations until Woodruff stake 
was organized, which took place in 1897. This reduction, 
with that of the organization of Star Valley stake in 1892, 
brought the number of associations down to sixteen. Thus 
the stake was made more compact, and it is more convenient 
for the stake officers to visit the local associations. Not- 
withstanding this lightening of their burden, the stake board 
felt most deeply the severance of the old ties which had bound 
them so strongly to the separate associations; a feeling of 
mutual love and confidence had sprung up between them 
which could not be effaced. 

This stake board has always been very prosperous and 
prudent in the gathering and disbursement of means. As an 
example let us quote. During the period intervening between 
the organization of the stake board and the year 1905, the 
receipts of the stake amounted to the comfortable sum of 
$3,090.75. The following items of contribution are also 
interesting and substantial: 

For Stake Tabernacle $ 86.22 

For Missionary Purposes $325.38 

For the Women's Building, Salt Lake City $250.00 

For the Fielding Academy, Bear Lake Stake $400.00 

For charitable purposes $200.00 



For the Logan Temple $212.00 

For Emigration $ 60.00 

In addition to these amounts, the ward associations have 

disbursed in the same period of time, for home enterprises, 

over $10,000.00. 


The stake associations have issued three manuscript 
papers called the "Literary Garland." Two volumes of this 
paper were printed in pamphlet form, and about 150 copies 
of each were issued. 

The membership of the stake is reported as follows: in 
1879 at the first organization, 273; in 1884, 423; in 1900, 703; 
and in 1910, 872. 

This increase certainly speaks well for the efforts of both 
local and stake authorities. At present, there are 23 asso- 
ciations in the stake. 

The general tone and spirit of this stake is one of unity 
and harmony; in all the years of its existence there has never 
been a word of discord or dissension between the stake officers . 
All have worked as a unit for the advancement of the cause 


of Mutual Improvement. Much of this has been due to the 
splendid executive ability of the woman who worked for years 
at the head of this board Mrs. Nancy Pug-mire. Her successor, 
Miss Elizabeth Winters, has taken up the work with intelli- 
gence and earnestness and is adding to the excellent work 
done by her predecessor. 

The following' sisters have acted as officers in the stake 
board: presidents Nancy E. Pug-mire and Elizabeth Winters; 
counselors Amy E. Cook, Alice M. Rich, Sara A. Allred, 
Myra ? Hart, Lizzie Hoge Welker, Zelpha B ram well and 
Emma Sutton; secretaries and assistants Elizabeth M. Hart, 
Lizzie Hoge, Sarah Pendsey, Sarah Grimmet, Elizabeth 
Pug-mire Rich, Leola V. Rich, Mabel Rich, Effie Perkins, 
Nellie Pearce Perkins, Lillie Grimmet; treasurers Lillias 
B. Haywood, Ellen Budg-e Pugmire; aids Ella Rich, Ida Offi 
Dunford, Elmira B. Hart, Mattie Cruikshank, Pernecy 
Bag-by, Mary I. Rich, Libbie Rich Anderson, Mary Sutton, 
Louise Rog-ers Rich, Nellie Pearce, Stella Pugmire, Sarah 
Grimmet, Inger M. Welker, Effie Perkins Hanson, Ellen 
Athey, Leonora Weaver; librarians Lottie I. Price, Lillie 
Grimmet; music directors and assistants Adeline Spencer, 
Laura Richards, Lottie Shepherd, Edna Crowther; org-anist 
Mary Roberts. 

A unique feature of recent date in this stake has been 
the organization of a stake chorus, composed of the Y. L. M. 
LA. ward officers, who meet on regular priesthood meeting- 
day for practice. The director and her assistants visit the 
wards as often as possible to assist the local choristers. 


Beaver stake is a small one, being: situated in the middle 
district of Utah where water is exceedingly scarce and vege- 
tation scanty. Even the hills about Beaver are not crowned 
with the verdure common to the more northern counties. 
There are great possibilities for this barren region, however, 
and in time to come with arid farming and the rich mineral 
resources of the county, it may become one of our wealthy 
and thickly populated centers. Beaver lay on the road to 
St. George in the old wagon- traveling days, and was one of 
the best and liveliest of those southern towns; that was in the 
days of John R. Murdock, with his big brick house, his bigger 



religion and his limitless welcome. But Beaver is still alive; 
and her citizens are justly proud of the record they have 
made in the face of great obstacles. The Murdock Academy, 
formerly the Beaver branch of the Brigham Young University, 
is located in the old government fort, which once sheltered 
United States soldiers in its quaint old rock walls in a pretty 
little valley at the mouth of the canyon east of the town. 



The following interesting account of the rise and history 
of the Y. L. M. I. A. of this stake was furnished by one of 
its former presidents: 

The Y. L. M. I. A. of this stake was started in the be- 
ginning of the first Retrenchment societies; for in 1873 this 
organization was put into active operation. Such women as 
Mary Ash worth, then Mary Shepherd, and Julia Murdock, 
now Farnsworth, were active workers in this initial Beaver 
Retrenchment association. The other towns of the stake 
were very soon organized; and in these preliminary asso- 
ciations the girls first began to take their intellectual and 



spiritual light from under the bushels of tradition and sex, 
and to let that light shine for the blessing and benefit of their 
associates. The programs of the regular weekly meetings 
consisted mainly of songs, recitations, select readings, essays 
and the "bearing of testimonies." Rather crude and un- 
systematic were these early efforts, but there was one 

advantage the brains of 
the girls were constantly 
exercised in scheming and 
planning that something 
suitable should be provided 
for entertainment and in- 
struction. Occasionally sew- 
ing-bees, rag-bees or quilt- 
ings were held to aid the 
Relief Society in their work 
of charity. Dancing parties 
were always participated in 
by both the old and the 
young, all uniting in this 
favorite pastime of the 
western Saints. The girls 
of the association considered 
it highly proper on these 
festive occasions to appear in 
dresses fashioned from the 
honest cloth made by the 
Beaver woolen mills; and 
very neat and sensible they 
looked, with their trimmings, made by nature's own hands, of 
ripe lips, rosy cheeks, and brilliant eyes no fairer girls could 
be found in the land. To complete the thought which 
originated these Retrenchment societies, these parties usually 
began at two o'clock in the afternoon, and closed at an early 
hour in the evening; and when refreshments were served, 
they were of a simple and wholesome character. Sometimes 
the girls arranged theatrical entertainments, and the pro- 
ceeds of these were invested in a good association library of 
Church and secular standard works. Some means were also 
donated towards the building of temples, and other worthy 
purposes . 


338 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

In the late seventies the name of the associations was 
changed to the Mutual Improvement associations. In 1879, 
a stake board of the Y. L. M. I. A. was effected, and Mrs. 
Mary E. Ash worth was chosen as stake president, with Ida 
Hunt and Flora Shipp Hill, formerly of Salt Lake City, as 
counselors; and Sarah C. Shepherd as secretary and treasurer. 
With this board there went a new impetus towards the growth 
of the whole cause. Semi-annual conferences were inaugu- 
rated for the stake, in March and September; at which con- 
ferences the four wards of the stake were liberally represented, 
these wards being- Beaver, Greenville, Minersville and 
Adamsville . The members of the stake board began to make 
regular visits to the ward associations, and through this 
interchange of ideas and union of effort the associations be- 
came stronger, and better work was done. Not until the 
appearance of the general Guide work, however, was there 
any radical change in the character of the programs. Then, 
all united in a systematic effort to carry out the plans laid 
down by the General Board. 

At the present time there are seven associations in this 
stake. Since the stake board was put in .operation, quite 
large sums of money have been collected though parties, 
theatricals, bazaars, and other entertainments; the proceeds 
of which have been used for school, missionary, charitable, 
emigration, and library purposes. One event in particular 
is of interest: at one time in conjoint history, the young men 
were so ' 'backward in coming forward' ' that after rendering 
all the parts in two so-called conjoint meetings, the girls 
concluded to move on alone. They therefore gave an enter- 
tainment in which no man was allowed to appear, except in 
the audience; even the orchestra was composed entirely of 
girls. The affair was original and unique, and was a success 
financially and artistically, the treasury being enriched 
about fifty dollars, after all expenses were deducted. 

One branch of work done by this stake which is a source 
of pride and joy, is the fine organization effected in the Beaver 
branch of the Brigham Young University, now the Murdock 
Academy. Regular meetings are held by the association at 
the Academy, and the Guide lessons are followed with credit; 
the testimony meetings in this school are a beautiful and 
successful feature; while the conjoint meetings are now of a 


high order, and all are well attended. The young people in 
the school are from all parts of Southern Utah, and the in- 
fluence of this work is very far-reaching. 

The following have acted as presidents of this stake Y. 
L. M. I. A.: Mary E. Ash worth, Sadie E. Maeser, Alice 
Gunn White, Jennie Munford, Gertrude Gillies. The board 
was reorganized Jan. 13, 1909, with Mrs. Alma W. McGregor 
as president; first counselor Amelia Dean; second counselor 
Alice M. White; secretary and treasurer Mae Crosby 
White; traveling librarian Theresa Maeser; assistant libra- 
rian Myrtle Farns worth; aids Dora Williams and Belle 
Yardley. A traveling library with one hundred good 
volumes was established by the board. 

Conjoint officers' meetings are held the first and third 
Sundays of every month and visiting is also done conjointly 
with the Young Men's board, every association being visited at 
least twice each quarter. All seven of the associations are 
fully organized and are in good running order. 


At the time of its organization, in 1901, Benson stake 
consisted of six towns situated in the northern part of Cache 
valley, all formerly a part of Cache stake. The stake board 
of the Y. L. M. I. A. is, therefore, of quite recent origin, 
but there was a Retrenchment society organized in the town 
of Smithfield on May 25, 1871, which is of historic interest. 
This pioneer organization had for its president a woman who 
has since helped to make Church history in several directions, 
Louisa L. Greene. To her we owe the splendid beginning 
made in this work in Smithfield. This lady married Levi 
W. Richards. She removed to Salt Lake, and became the 
first editor of the Woman's Exponent. Later she for many 
years had charge of the Children's Department in the Juve- 
nile Instructor. This Smithfield association was among the first 
out of town organizations formed in the Church. The meet- 
ings were held at the home of Evan M. Greene, a nephew of 
Brigham Young and the father of Lula Greene. The pro- 
grams rendered were of the same character as those given in 
other places: essays, talks and lectures, of a primitive yet 
sturdy and inspiring character, formed the basis of their 

340 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

work; these being interspersed with music and recitations. 
But the chief duty was to help every girl to get a testimony 
of the gospel. The resolutions which they adopted are as 

Resolved, that we, as daughters and as wives of Elders 
in Israel, seek to fully understand our true positions, and to 
honor and make honorable the same before our Heavenly 
Father and all good people . 

Resolved, that we are young and liable to be led into 
error if we trust in our strength and judgment. We not 
only solicit aid and wisdom from the heavens at all times, 
but will also hearken to the counsel and instructions of our 
beloved parents and those who are called of God to preside 
over us. 

Resolved, that we cultivate good order, good taste, neat- 
ness and dispatch in all domestic duties and in any other and 
all branches of industry which it may be necessary 
for us to perform, and that we will adopt no fash- 
ions in dress, manners or otherwise which are inconsistent 
with good sense, reason and modesty. 

Resolved, that we earnestly seek to establish true sister- 
ly confidence, unity and affection for and with each other; 
and that we exercise charity and overlook the infirmities of 
others as we wish to have our own imperfections put by; 
realizing that we are all children of the same great Father, 
and that in His sight one is as precious as another, where all 
are engaged in the same cause with like determinations. 

Resolved, that we will treat with respect and reverence 
every principle pertaining to the gospel of Christ as revealed 
to the servants of God upon the earth in these and in former 
days; and that we seek diligently, according to the best abil- 
ities given unto us, to improve in the knowledge of those 
correct and holy principles which embrace all that is ordained 
of God to lead to truly noble and refined womanhood; to 
learn the law of the Lord, the Word of Wisdom in all re- 
spects, and to be guided thereby in our daily walk. 

Resolved, that we strive henceforth with the help of God 
to live by every word that proceedeth from His mouth, that 
we may be worthy to see His face and dwell in His presence. 

Louisa L. Greene, president; Melissa G. Homer, Susie 
Greene, Mary A. Scrowther, Elizabeth Moorehead, Mary 



C. Downs, Julia Collett, counselors; Katherine E. Brown, 

The Benson stake Y. L. M. I. A. was organized Aug. 
5th, 1901, by Apostle Rudger Clawson. Wilhelmina M. 
Pond was chosen president, with Margaret Roskelly and 
Ruey Pond as her cotinselors and Annie Hyer as secretary. 
The board was reorganized on Feb. 22, 1903, with Mary R. 
Hendricks as president, and with Sarah Ann Hyer and Hat- 
tie C. Larsen as counselors. Hattie C. Larsen was released 



in April, 1908, and Marietta P. Bergeson was sustained in 
her stead. This office she still holds. Since that time these 
and associate sisters have labored with zeal and intelligence 
to carry forward the work intrusted to them; and they are fully 
sustained by the girls under their care; for the Benson stake 
is abreast of the other stakes in their stake and local work. 
The following sisters have acted in the offices named: 
presidents Wilhelmina M. Pond, Mary R. Hendricks; coun- 
selors Margaret Roskelly, Ruey Pond, Hattie C. Larsen, 



Marietta P. Bergeson and Sarah Ann Hyer; secretaries and 
treasurers Annie Hyer, Estella B. Bell, Ruey P. Bernhisel, 
Maud L. Spackman, Emma Burnham, Martha C. Pond, and 
Nellie Thompson; assistant secretary Amy Shepherd; 
organists and choristers Odessa L. Hendricks, Orella M. 
Jensen and Eliza Monson; librarians Maud L. Spackman 
and Elna J. Merrill; aids Mary Peterson, Nettie Bernhisel, 
Hannah Poulson, Ida H. Merrill, Katie Crag-en, Anna V. 
Merrill, Martha C. Pond, Nellie Hind, and Hannah Hind. 


The stake organization of the Y. L. M. I. A. of this 
stake took place at Lovell, Wyoming, May 26, 1901, when the 
following' officers were chosen: president Mary L. Welch; 
first counselor Pattie S. Hatch; second counselor Lenora 
Weaver; secretary and treas- 
urer Birdie Graham; aid 
Rebecca Taggart. Later, 
the secretary moved out of 
the stake, and Alfa Grant 
was chosen to fill her place, 
with May Maxwell Tippits as 
her Assistant. Additional 
officers have been appointed 
as follows: librarian Lizzie 
Meeks; aids Laura Bunting, 
Clara Briggs, Rebecca Frost, 
Lizzie Meeks, 'Lizzie Egan, 
Laura Bunting, Rebecca Jen- 
nings, Sylvia Griffin, Minnie 
Thorley; with Rebeca Tag- 
gart as chorister. 

During the first year of 
life in this new stake, the 
local meetings were held in a 
tent in camp where the Sidon 
canal was building, with 
President Mary L. Welch in 

charge. There was another local ward association at work 
during this pioneer year: in Burlington, which was then a 
part of the Woodruff stake of Zion. There are now five 



ward associations in the Big Horn stake: at Byron, Cowley, 
Lovell, Burlington, and Otto. This young stake is one of 
the most zealous and thriving in all the Church. The modern 
vices and temptations are so rare as to be almost unknown, 
and the sweet spirit of harmony which prevails in this far- 
away branch, shows how close the heavens are to the homes 
of God-fearing pioneers. 

In 1907 the board was reorganized as follows: presi- 
dent Millie B. Egan; first counselor Hattie P. Howard; 
second counselor Belva Sessions; secretary and treasurer 
Norna N. Arnoldus; corresponding secretary Eva J. Jen- 
son; chorister Fannie L. Wolz; organist Mamie Carling; 
librarian Clarissa R. Willey; aids Birdie Tippits, Clara 
Hobson, Lizzie Johnson, Annie Duncan, Lizzie Larson, and 
Rachel Snyder. The new board took hold of their work 
with zeal and visited the organizations of the stake quarterly 
although some of the visits require a three days' drive with 
a team over dusty roads. The traveling library books have 
been exchanged from ward to ward and read by a great 
many members. There were one hundred per cent of offi- 
cers and members keeping the Word of Wisdom and paying 
tithing. The girls of the stake are frequently praised for 
their virtue, and the majority of these young people go to the 
temple of the Lord to be married, notwithstanding the great 
distance and expense of travel. Some original summer work 
has been undertaken in literature, ethics and physical edu- 
cation and whenever tried the results prove very satisfactory. 
Many who were indifferent to religious topics have taken 
other subjects and pursued them with good results. During 
the labors of these officers a new organization of the Penrose 
branch was effected and is doing a good work. The stake 
and local board meetings are held each month the day of 
priesthood meeting, and this is proving successful, as it has 
been very difficult hitherto to get to meetings on account of 
the inconvenience of travel . A large per cent of the mothers 
attend the meetings and lend encouragement to the young. 
The work is progressing and its influence is felt throughout 
the stake. 




When the southern end of the Territory of Idaho 
first invaded by the thrifty " Mormon" settlers, no 



dreamed that a few years would see them in possession of 
great fields and farms, stretching over hundreds of miles of 
country, or that they would settle up towns and villages, 
build homes and school houses until they became a powerful 
factor in the future civil and political history of the Gem 
State of the Union. But such is actually the case; and some 
of those vigorous old Idaho pioneers, with bodies of iron and 
spirits of gold, lived to see their first vast "stake" cut into a 
dozen different smaller divisions. The old Bannock stake 
has been divided and subdivided until now each quorum of 
the stake authorities can get over its section in less than a 
month's time and without traveling hundreds of miles to do it. 
One of the early divisions of this beautiful Snake River 
country was named the Bingham stake of Zion; but even this 
has been cut up and cut off by other and lesser divisions, 
yet each is now more populous than when that sturdy and 
energetic president, James E. Steele, proved the mettle of 


every Saint in his charge by his frequent and welcome visits. 

The Bannock stake of Zion was divided on July 8th, 
1895, and the Bingham stake was made from the eastern por- 
tion. On this occasion Apostle, now President, John Henry 
Smith was present, and under his direction the stake Y. L. 
M. LA. was organized with the following- officers: presi- 
dent Emma Molen; counselors Josephine Thompson and 
Emma L. Rounds; secretary Christie Empey; treasurer 
Ann I. Andrus; assistant secretary Geneva Molen. At this 
time there were fifteen associations in the stake, with an en- 
rollment of 300 members. 

There have been many changes in the board, as w r as nat- 
ural; for the exigencies of pioneer life, the cares of mother- 
hood, and the removal of young settlers to other points 
create a condition of restless activity. But in and through 
all their changes, this stake has kept abreast of the work and 
has labored faithfully and well. They give credit in their 
reports to the great assistance which has been received from 
the annual visits made by the General Board to their stake; 
they also 'record the blessings received from proper use of 
the Guide. They have themselves instituted some good de- 
partures from the general mode of procedure; for instance, 
the officers have districted off their labors, and the various 
settlements are under the direct supervision of one or more 
of the board who live in the different sections. This enables 
the stake board at its monthly sessions to come into immedi' 
ate contact with the conditions in the various wards, helping 
all to keep close tally upon each other through this direct 

The following sisters have acted upon this board: pres- 
idents Emma Molen, Josephine Thompson; counselors 
Josephine Thompson, Emma L. Rounds, Ann I. Andrus, 
Elizabeth Poole, Violet Newman, and Elizabeth Ossmen; 
secretaries and treasurers Christie Empey, Ann I. Andrus, 
Geneva Molen, Laura May Bybee, Minnie Bybee, Marie 
Jensen, Emma M. Hurst, Mary L. Hansen, Cora Chandler, 
Elizabeth Gilchrist, Charlotte R. Davis, Bessie Haycock and 
Effie Avery; aids Mary Stevens, Mary A. Southwick, Marie 
Jensen, Elizabeth Ossmen, Irene Selks, Pearl Wilson, Mary 
Lee, Libbie Poole, Cora Chandler, Luetta Hansen, Ethel 
Poole, Bertha Benson, Laura Call, Lucy Din woody, Grace 



Harmon, Anna Jacobson, Harriet Holland, Eliza Boyce, 
Mary Myler Robinson, Laura Call, Charlotte R. Davis, Han- 
nah Steele, Lillian Hansen, Martha L. Lee, Elizabeth 
Hauis, Alice Jenkins and Fannie Gudmansen; librarians 
Juletta Andnis, Hannah Robinson, Lovinia Andrus, Lucy 
Robinson and Emily Cramer; organists and choristers Len- 
ora Ossmen, Elnora Nixon and Lillie Norton. 


The Blackfoot stake of Zion was formerly a part of Bing- 
ham stake, but as Bingham was so very large it was deemed 
advisable to divide it, thus on the 31st day of January, 1904, 
at a quarterly conference held at lona, Idaho, the Blackfoot 
stake of Zion was created, with Elias S. Kimball as president. 
At the first conference of the new stake, held at Blackfoot, 
February 14, 1904, a stake organization of the Young Ladies' 
Mutual Improvement Association was effected. Mrs. Juliette 
Blackburn, a woman of noble characteristics and bright 

attainments, was made pres- 
ident. The other officers 
sustained at this time were: 
first counselor, Mrs. Maria 
K. Buchanan; second coun- 
selor, Mrs. Sarah J. Dalton; 
secretary and treasurer, Mrs. 
Sara Hodson Carruth; aids, 
Mrs. Catherine Bennett, Mrs.. 
Anna R. Jacobson and Mrs. 
Pearl Campbell. All were 
selected by the stake pres- 
idency, and form a band of 
zealous and efficient workers. 
At the adjournment of con- 
ference they were set apart 
by Apostle Hyrum M. Smith, 
Elders J. Golden Kimball, 
Elias S. Kimball, Lorenzo R. 
Thomas and Don C. Walker. 
Work was at once begun 
in earnest. The entire board 
JULIETTE BLACKBURN. ma de a visit through the 


stake in the early days of April for the purpose of getting 
acquainted and more fully comprehending the work before 
them. Four new organizations were effected on this trip. 

Since that time circumstances have required reorganiz- 
ation in some wards, and the organizations at Rich and Tilden 
have proved impracticable and been given up on account of 
there being so few girls of Mutual Improvement age and 
those few living in a widely scattered condition. Five new 
associations: Lost River, Jameston, Blackfoot Second ward, 
Shelley Second ward, and Wapello, have been added. At this 
date there are fifteen fully organized associations, and each 
month the Young Woman 's Journal is welcomed in 210 homes 
of Blackfoot stake. 

October 14, 1906, Juliette Blackburn was released on 
account of sickness and Sara Hod son Carruth was sustained 
as stake president with Lillian E. Thomas and Catherine 
Bennett as counselors and Alice D. Johnstone as secretary 
and treasurer. 

Among the problems confronting the organization was 
the establishing of traveling libraries. The girls must have 
books must have the same advantages as Z ion's daughters 
have in other stakes. How to obtain the necessary means 
was the question. The ward organizations were new and of 
few numbers. The stake board did not feel at this time to 
call upon them for aid, so, at an officers' meeting in Decem- 
ber, it was decided that as an initial step in the establishment 
of this library each young lady stake officer should contribute 
one book and in addition that the stake officers living in Black- 
foot, Shelley and Riverside, should give an entertainment in 
their respective wards and contribute the entire proceeds to 
the library fund. Their plan was carried out with energy; 
so at the beginning of the year 1905 they had a library con- 
sisting of over seventy choice volumes. 

The stake officers count the annual June conference as 
a green spot in their history; although so far distant from the 
central city of Zion the interest taken is so great that on one 
occasion Blackfoot had thirty-eight present during the entire 
conference, the largest representation of any stake in Zion. 

The following sisters have acted on this board: pres- 
idents Juliette Blackburn and Sarah H. Carruth; coun- 
selors Maria K. Buchanan, Sarah J. Dalton, Catherine 

348 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Bennett and Lillian E. Thomas; secretaries and treasurers 
Sara H. Carruth, Alice D. Johnstone and Myrtle S. Gibbs; 
aids Catherine Bennett, Anna R. Jacobson, Pearl Campbell, 
Leonora Jensen, Hulda Mickelson, Mary E. Freeman, Alice 
Hale and Myrtle S. Gibbs; musical . director Florence J. 
Muir; organist Bertha Y. Jensen; librarian Juanita 
Rich; class leader Josephine Maughn. 

During- the last two summers, while the regular work 
was discontinued, reading- classes were org-anized and some 
of the books selected for the young- ladies' reading- course 
were read. 

The summer work done by this stake has followed along 
the beaten track; but the boards have sought to improve the 
general amusement conditions by introducing lectures and 
musical programs with concerts and socials. The money 
thus raised has been used to enlarge their traveling library 
of which they are justly proud. 


Box Elder Stake, situated immediately north of Weber, 
was organized by President Brigham Young in 1877. This 
stake was for many years blessed with the genial presence 
and wise counsel of one of Zion's great men, Apostle Loren- 
zo Snow. His pure and devoted Christian life would neces- 
sarily do much to lift to a higher plane the community in 
which he resided. He labored among the people with untir- 
ing zeal, ever anxious for their welfare, spiritually and tem- 
porally. It was with Lorenzo Snow and in this stake that 
the first movement originated in Utah, of solidifying the 
scattered interests of the people into one common interest in 
what was called the United Order, which later spread all 
through Utah. The men dedicated their property and the 
women adjusted their labors to a common center of interest; 
and for some years the people struggled nobly to establish 
a perfect system of communal life. That the movement was 
not altogether a financial success does not detract from the 
bravery and enterprising qualities of the people. When this 
great industrial movement was at its height, when mothers 
and daughters, with little time for fashion and frivolity, were 
busily engaged in helping the men in their upward struggle 
of material life, the necessity for a spiritual development for 


the young women was recognized and resulted in the calling- 
together of the mothers and daughters for the purpose of or- 
ganizing what was then called a Retrenchment association. 
On July 30, 1875, many of these women congregated at the 
court house and were met by some of Zion's leading women. 
Eliza R. Snow, Jane Richards, Harriet Snow were there, 
and Apostle Lorenzo Snow met with them. Eliza R. Snow 
explained the motives and object of these associations, and 
subsequently the following officers were chosen and sus- 
tained as the board for the new association: president, Min- 
nie J. Snow; first counselor, Emelia D. Madson; second 
counselor, Lottie N. Hunsaker; third counselor, Ida Snow; 
fourth counselor, Jane Johnson; fifth counselor, Lucy N. 
Jensen; sixth counselor, Esther Smith; secretary, Eugenia 
Snow; assistant secretary, Fannie Graehl. The enrollment 
of that date was 149 members, with an increase a few weeks 
later of 102, making a total of 251 Retrenchment members. 

On Tuesday, August 10th, the association began actual 
work. The exercises consisted of testimonies, with select 
readings from the Exponent, /uvenile Instructor and Millennial 
Star. The Relief Society sisters took great interest in the 
new organization, visiting it often, assisting with words and 
influence. Eliza R. Snow, being the sister of Apostle Snow, 
often visited Box Elder and was a source of much help and 
direct inspiration. 

In early days, when organized effort in this direction 
was new and strange, when dormant talent was just awaken- 
ing, the girls bent most of their energies in the practical di- 
rection of helping to build up the new community in gather- 
ing funds through various activities to assist in erecting 
the buildings, such as the woolen mills factory and 
churches. They also contributed their share towards erect- 
ing such institutions as the Deseret Hospital and the Salt 
Lake and Logan Temples; they lent a helping hand to 
the Relief Society to store wheat for coming years. Some 
of the straw from these gleaning expeditions was afterwards 
prepared and woven into the stiff hats and bonnets in vogue 
at that time, and worn as a part of the "Deseret Costume." 

The meetings of the Y. L.M.I. A. were at first held weekly 
but later they were held semi-weekly, being graded into a 
senior and junior department. This did not prove success- 

350 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

ful and the first plan of all meeting in one department once a 
week was again resorted to. As the young- ladies gradually 
developed in many ways, they began to realize that it was 
necessary to have something besides testimony bearing and 
extempore programs to stimulate and develop the spiritual 
and mental powers; so it was decided to have a subject or 
lectures given at their meetings. Very soon the girls began 
to lead out socially as well as spiritually and many entertain- 
ments were arranged and carried out as a means of gathering 
money for the treasury. As early as 1877 the association 
decided to purchase an organ; sufficient money was raised 
and an organ was bought, which has been in active service 
for some thirty years and is said to be good still. 

In 1878, the three organizations of women, the Primary, 
the Y. L. M. I. A. and the Relief Society, were divided into 
four wards respectively. Sister Minnie J. Snow was ap- 
pointed superintendent over the four ward Y. L. M. I. Asso- 
ciations of Brigham City, and she labored for two years with- 
out assistants. Soon after being divided into two wards, the 
associations began to hold general meetings. The secreta- 
ries would read reports, and members and officers would com- 
ment on them. These meetings were held quite irregularly, 
until they gradually developed into officers' meetings and 
were held semi-monthly. 

March 11, 1879, the young ladies of the Box Elder stake 
held their first conference. It was an all day session. From 
that time for many years these conferences were held quar- 
terly, and prominent sisters from Salt Lake City were 
invited to visit the conference and encourage the young in 
their work. That same year a series of papers, called ' 'Offi- 
cers' Contributor," edited by Armeda Young, was started and 
did much to enliven the meetings and educate the girls. 

On September 11, 1881, the stake Y. L. M. I. 
A. was organized and Minnie J. Snow was made 
president over the stake association, with Mary A. 
Snow as first counselor; Freddie Widerborg, second coun- 
selor; Lydia Snow, recording secretary; and Armeda 
Snow Young, corresponding secretary. In the autumn of 
'81, a movement was made to start a library for each of the 
associations of Brigham, and to this end each association 
gave an entertainment, the proceeds of which, together with 


some donations, went to buy the books, and the libraries 
were started, naturally on a small scale, but books of a high 
class of literature were procured. Minnie J. Snow origin- 
ated this plan for securing- books, devoted much time to 
the success of the undertaking-, and the libraries were placed 
entirely under her direction. 

In 1882, President Elmina S. Taylor visited the Box 
Elder stake for the first time, in company with Eliza R. 
Snow, Mattie Home and Zina D. Young. At that confer- 
ence President Minnie J . Snow reported that the association 
up to that time had handled about $2,000 which had been col- 
lected by donations, entertainments and festivals and had been 
disbursed for charitable and other purposes. Then Box Elder 
stake took in. what is now known as Maladand Cassia stakes, 
and gradually the different wards had a Mutual Improve- 
ment Association. Among- others, a Lamanite village, Wash- 
akie, was organized, with a Lamanite sister as second coun- 
selor. To make the yearly visits to all these associations 
necessitated not a little planning, energy, and sacrificing of 
personal interests; especially in reaching the most distant 
wards. The sisters would usually visit in company with 
the brethren and it took about three weeks to make one. trip, 
taking in Snowville and all intermediate points, to Cassia. 
The wards nearer home could be reached with more ease. 
But if these trips were trying in some few things, they were 
fraught with many spiritual blessings, and all inconveniences 
were forgotten. Later when the stake was divided this duty 
became lighter; it then took fourteen days for the longest trip. 

It may not be out of place here to state, what must 
already be apparent, that President Minnie J. Snow was 
a woman of marked ability; her whole heart and soul 
was devoted to creating new fields of usefulness for the 
young sisters and to provide new forms of refined and 
profitable amusement for them. Among these various en- 
terprises were many beautiful concerts and several quite 
pretentious musical cantatas. Money was raised through 
these festivities which was used to help different kinds 
of public and private 'philanthropies: persons were emigrated 
from the old countries, missions were assisted, and means 
donated to building ward meetinghouses, temples, and also 
the tabernacle in Brigham City. The first great fair 

352 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

attempted by the Y. L. M. I. A. was held in 1884, June llth 
and 12th, and the proceeds went to swell the treasury, which 
was always heavily drawn upon. It was followed in due 
time by others. About this time a series of printed circular 
letters were issued to the different associations, outlining and 
suggesting what would be best for the girls to study. 

One unique effort made by the Y. L. M. I. A. of Box 
Elder is worthy of mention. It was known as the "pen 
dinner." It was undertaken on Thanksgiving day, 1886, 
when the young ladies of the four wards of Brigham City 
provided a dinner for all the inmates of the Utah peniten- 
tiary, where their beloved brother and fatherly friend, Apos- 
tle Lorenzo Snow, who had been such a source of help and 
inspiration to them, was incarcerated for conscience sake, 
together with many others of Zion's noble men, during the 
trying years of what we call ''the crusade." This idea orig- 
inated with Sister Emelia Madson, then president of the Y. 
L. M. I. A. of the Third ward, an enterprising and energetic 
woman, who spared no pains to accomplish a desired object. 
Conferring with Marshal Dyer, Sister Madson learned that 
there would be no objections to the young ladies of Brigham 
City preparing and furnishing a Thanksgiving dinner for 
the prisoners, provided they all fared alike. Up to that 
time it had been thought that only our brethren should share 
in the feast: but on hearing this from Mr. Dyer, the sisters, 
nothing daunted, went to work with a will and provided the 
famous dinner. There were 150 inmates of the prison, so it 
was quite an undertaking. But every girl was willing and 
eager to do her share , and helped the project to a successful 
end. The city council of Brigham City presented Sisters 
Minnie J . Snow and Emelia Madson with railroad tickets to 
take the dinner to Salt Lake City and serve it. It was a gala 
day for every one within those gloomy walls for the men 
who were there for their religion's sake, as well as for those 
who were there for their misdeeds. Afterwards followed a 
grateful letter with signatures of all the prisoners. 

In '91, Sister Snow trained a ladies' quartet, which was 
a great help in entertainments. A ladies' choir likewise 
helped the singing wonderfully at the conferences. 

There came into this board in 1893 a worker among the 
young ladies of Box Elder, a sweet and gifted woman, of 



whom there had been many during the years of their exist- 
ence as an association - but this one is particularly remem- 
bered for her sweet refined spirit; one who became well 
known in Utah for her interesting stories in the Young Wom- 
an's Journal Lillie Stuart Horsley. Her thoughtfulness and 
love of mankind made her a favorite with all classes; and 
when, in 1902, in the flower of her sweet womanhood, she 
was taken from us to a better 
world, every one felt the loss 
of a personal friend. 

In 1894, President Minnie 
J. Snow, who had presided 
over the Y. L. M. I. A. of 
Box Elder for nearly twenty 
years, was called to labor in 
the Salt Lake Temple, where 
her husband, Apostle Loren- 
zo Snow, presided. Sister 
Snow had been an untiring 
worker, never sparing her- 
self in any way and also ex- 
pecting much of her officers. 
The stake was then reorgan- 
ized with Minnie Loveland 
Snow at its head. She estab- 
lished the nickel fund, re- 
quiring each member of the 
associations to pay annually 
a nickel to the stake fund. 
To her also belongs the credit 
of improving the regular officers' meetings, which had 
been held semi-monthly for many years, in making them 
monthly meetings, held on the day of the priesthood 
meeting. Thereby it was made possible for all, or 
nearly all, the outlying ward associations to be represented. 
A carriage was also bought by the Y. L. M. I. A. to accom- 
modate the sisters in visiting the outlying associations. 

In 1897, the two Mutual Improvement Associations of 
Box Elder joined forces and began a movement to establish 
a public library and free reading room. The interest soon 
spread to the city council, county teachers and all public- 




spirited people, and today there is quite a fine collection of 
books in the library and more are being added every year. 
The building- cost between $650 and $700, and four hundred 
books were partly bought, partly donated, and furnished a 
very good nucleus for a library. This has proved a source 
of refinement and education to all classes of people. It was 
dedicated February 27, 1898. In 1898 or 1899, the associa- 
tions were graded, and, Guide work being then in full prog- 
ress, the associations advanced rapidly in ''grace and knowl- 
edge" and diffused, as they have done ever since organized, 
sisterly love, pure comradeship, and divine intelligence. 

In 1901, President Minnie Loveland Snow moved to Salt 
Lake City and the stake was once more reorganized. Sister 

Snow had been an earnest _ , 

worker, and did much good 
among the young. She was 
followed by the gentle and 
refined Sister Hattie Wight. 
Conditions changed, but the 
work still flourished and pro- 
gressed in a quiet, systematic 
way. Miss Wight was a 
young woman of sterling 
qualities and possessed the 
undivided confidence and sup- 
port of all, members and offi- 
cers alike, laboring with un- 
tiring zeal till her death, 
March 15, 1907. 

At the reorganization , 
May 12th, 1907, Eliza Thomp- 
son became president; the 
work done shows her to be 
capable, progressive and in- 

This stake was the first to hold conjoint officers' meet- 
ings. In 1905, the Y. L. M. I. A. of the stake had handled 
since its organization $13,114.49 in cash alone, not men- 
tioning what property, merchandise, etc., had been owned 
and controlled. 



October 11, 1908, seven wards were taken from Box 
Elder to form a portion of the Bear River stake, leaving 
twelve wards in Box Elder. 

An unusual feature of the summer's work in this 
stake was the convening- of the stake and ward Mutuals 
with other auxiliary organizations of the stake in the va- 
rious stake and ward meeting-houses on the Sabbath evening 
of each week, under the auspices of the presiding priesthood; 
after opening exercises, the young ladies adjourned to their 
separate departments and were addressed by the older breth- 
ren and sisters on suitable topics, chosen by the priesthood. 
These sessions proved very successful and beneficial. 

In addition to the sisters already mentioned, the fol- 
lowing have served on this board in various capaci- 
ties: Janie Loveland, Emma Vance, Sophy Valentine, 
Maria Forsgren, Hattie Jensen, Minnie H. Jensen, Alice 
M. Johnson, Nancy H. Nichols, Maggie R. Wight, Anna 
Bowring, Alvira Rees, Rachel Evans, Lillie Stuart Hors- 
ley, Lucinda Wight, Winnie Boden, Vinnie R. Stohl, 
Lydia Forsgren, Sarah Mathias, Vie R. Blackburn, Edna 
Andersen, Lulu Blackburn, Annie J. Peters, Lottie Cozier, 
Daisy Madsen, May M. Horsley, Etta Madsen, Clara 
Jensen, 'Lizzie Kelly, Eugenia S. Pierce, Phoebe Mad- 
sen, Sylvia Mason. 

Three brethren from the high council were added to this 
board as assistants in their work: Jacob Jensen, O. C. 
Loveland and S. N. Cook. 

It will be noted that three of the women who have la- 
bored as presidents of the young ladies of the stake have been 
taken away by death; they were: Minnie J. Snow, Minnie L. 
Snow, and Hattie Wight. The first two removed to Salt 
Lake City before their demise, but the latter was president 
at the time of her death. Special services were held over 
her remains, and the girls contributed sufficient to erect a 
monument over her grave. The dedicatory services of this 
beautiful monument were held on Decoration Day, 1907. 
This stake is still far advanced in good and gracious things 
both morally and spiritually. 

356 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 


In the summer of the year 1875 Apostle Brigham Young- 
advised the young- ladies of Logan to org-anize themselves 
into a society for mutually improving- themselves; and, accord- 
ingly, a number of young ladies met on the evening- of Aug. 
23, 1875, at the home of Ellen Ricks 
(Nibley) and appointed Mrs. Phoebe A. 
McNeil as chairman of the meeting. 
jjji^m An orgranization was effected, with 

Ellen Ricks as president, Isabell 
Davidson and Caroline Olsen as coun- 
selors, Lydia Crockett as secretary, and 
Mattie Blair as assistant secretary. At 
this meeting it was decided to hold two 
sessions weekly for the purpose of 
studying the Church works and bearing 
testimony. The following set of reg- 
ulations and rules was drafted and 


ART. I. 

Sec. 1. The name of this association shall be The Young- 
Ladies' Mutual Improvement Society. 

Sec. 2. The officers of this society shall consist of a 
president, two counselors, secretary and assistant secretary, 
who may be elected every quarter. 

Sec. 3. Any young: lady over the age of fourteen years 
may become a member of this society by signing- and obeying 
these rules. 


Sec. 1. Each member shall be required to pay fifteen 
cents per quarter to buy necessaries for the society. 

Sec. 2. No laughing, talking- or light speeches shall be 
allowed during meeting. 

Sec. 3. All voting", such as for the electing- of officers 
and admitting members, shall be carried by a majority vote 
of the members present. 



1. Resolved, that we always try to do unto others as we 
would have others do unto us. 

2. Resolved, that we cease from all loud laughter, light 
speeches, light-mindedness and pride, and all evil doings. 

3. Resolved, that we always cultivate a kind, pleas- 
ant and cheerful disposition towards all, and always act 
charitably towards the poor. 

4. Resolved, that we observe strictly the principles of 
virtue, modesty, sincerity and truth, in our conversation and 
deportment towards all with whom we are associated. 

5. Resolved, that we cease to be covetous, cease to be 
idle, cease to be unclean, and cease to find fault with each 

6. Resolved, that we cease to follow or pattern after 
foolish and extravagant fashions, but will be plain and simple 
in our manner of dress. 

7. Resolved, that we will not keep the company of nor 
associate with persons who are not of this Church. 

8. Resolved, that we strictly obey the counsels of our 
parents and also the authorities who are placed over us. 

9. Resolved, that we pray to God, our Heavenly Father, 
for His care and protection, that we may endure unto the end. 

10. Resolved, that we will not associate with nor keep 
the company of young men who will indulge in the use of 
intoxicating liquors or tobacco. 

J 1 . Resolved that we will cease from what is termed 
"round dancing." 

The young men of Logan met with the Young Ladies' 
society Oct. 11, 1875, and it was then determined to hold con- 
joint testimony meetings the first Thursday in every month. 

In October, 1878, a number of sisters from Salt Lake 
City, appointed to labor in the interest of Mutual Improve- 
ment, visited Logan and organized associations in each ward. 
Until 1881 the history of the Mutual Improvement Associ- 
ations was local, but a stake organization was effected in the 
summer of that year with the following officers: Harriet A. 
Preston, president; Ida lone Cook, first counselor; KinnieB. 
Caine, second counselor; Alley Preston Martineau, secretary. 




At that time, there were thirty-eight local associations 
with a member ship of 1,166. Cache stake then extended 190 
miles, from Box Elder on the south to Rexburg on the north. 
Owing- to the long distances to be traveled, the condition of 
roads, etc., frequent visits to the far- 
away associations were impracticable; 
but they were not neglected. Circular 
letters of instruction, carefully and 
thoughtfully prepared, were sent out 
at intervals, and bore to the distant 
workers messages of love and encour- 
agement. It is worthy of note that the 
same instructions on proper behavior, 
encouragement to ward moral and intel- 
lectual development and a knowledge 
of the principles ol the gospel, were 
impressed then as at the present time, 
accompanied with the same inspir- 
ation. Sewing and fancy-work were 
taught, and also lessons on hygiene 
and cooking. 

President Elmina S. Taylor made her first visit to the 
young ladies of Cache stake in June, 1883. In the spring of 
1884 President Harriet A. Preston removed to Salt Lake City 
with her husband, who had been called to act as Presiding 
Bishop of the Church . Her much-appreciated labors among 
the young ladies of Cache stake came to an end with many 
regrets on the part of her associates, for, as is always the 
case with those who labor with divine assistance, her efforts 
had been crowned with success, and her memory will long 
live in the hearts of those whom she benefited. 

Cache stake was divided in February, 1884, fifteen wards 
going to form Oneida stake. June 7th, 1884, Carrie M. C. 
Smith was chosen to succeed Sister Preston, with Ida I. 
Cook and Ida Thatcher Langton as her counselors, Alley P. 
Martineau recording secretary, and Ellen Barber correspond- 
ing secretary. During the time Sister Smith held the office 
of president, Sisters Zina Y. Williams, Maretta Ormsby, Eliz- 
abeth Townsend, and Rhoda L. Merrill acted as her 
counselors. The interest in Mutual Improvement work was 
greatly increased under Sister Smith's able guidance, for she 


and her co-workers labored assiduously for its advancement. 
Special prominence was given to the spiritual development of 
the girls, and rapid growth was realized along this as well as 
other lines, for the instructions given under the inspiration 
of the Spirit of the Lord with which the president was so richly 
endowed, were as seeds sown in good soil which yielded a 
hundred fold. At a Y. L. M. I. A. conference, held October 
20th, 1891, after more than seven years of efficient service, 
Sister Smith was released, and Elizabeth Townsend was 
chosen to fill the vacancy, with Lucy Hoving and Sarah H. 


Taylor as counselors. Ellen Barber as recording- secretary, 
and Armenia Parry corresponding secretary. On the llth 
of July, 1896, Sarah H. Taylor was released an account of 
illness, and Mary D. L. Hendrickson was appointed as her 

The Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement Associations of 
Cache stake had now increased to such an extent that thoug-h 
there were but twenty-three associations, there was an 
enrollment of 1,300. This period of Mutual Improvement 
work was characterized by unity and love emanating from 
the head; a nearness akin to motherly affection was felt for 
the girls and was reciprocated by them. They were earnestly 
devoted to the Mutual Improvement cause. The associations 
were visited often and a strong- impetus was given to the 
moral and intellectual as well as spiritual part ot the work. 

When, on the 12th of November, 1898, it became nee- 


essary to release President Townsend, owing: to her age and 
declining- health, the Mntuals were bereft of one of their most 
faithful and energetic workers. Having devoted a great 
portion of her life to the service of the girls of Cache stake, 
she was rewarded by a depth of affection rarely experienced, 
but fully appreciated even to her death, which occurred two 
years after her release from duty. But as is usual in the 
work of the Lord, a person was found qualified for the needs 
of the hour, and her mantle fell upon her second counselor, 
Mary D. L. Hendrickson. Lavinia Maughan and Martha W. 
Carlisle were selected as her counselors. Ellen Barber, who 
had labored so faithfully since 1884, was retained as secre- 
tary and Armenia Parry as corresponding secretary. In 
1899 Jennie H. Lloyd was appointed corresponding secretary 
to succeed Armenia Parry. From the beginning of 1900 to 
the close of 1903, Jean C. Thatcher acted as assistant record- 
ing secretary. 

After the division of the stake in 1901, when Hyrum and 
Benson stakes were organized, there remained but eleven 
associations in Cache stake, namely, the seven wards of 
Logan, Benson, Hyde Park, Providence, and Greenville, 
with a total enrollment of 670. In September, 1902, First 
Counselor Lavinia Maughan was called by death from 
her work in the Mutual, a work to which she had given 
her most enthusiastic efforts. On the 27th of October, 1902, 
Second Counselor Martha W. Carlisle was chosen to fill her 
place and Leah D. Widtsoe was appointed second counselor 
to President Hendrickson. After two years of capable serv- 
ice in this capacity, Sister Widtsoe removed to Provo, and 
on Oct. 31st, 1905, Margaret Smith was chosen to fill her place. 

The traveling library, started in 1900, now contains 112 
choice books which are arranged in satchels and carried to 
the different associations. In order to give the girls a better 
appreciation of the books and increase an interest in reading, 
the satchels are introduced into the association by one of the 
librarians, who gives a brief sketch of the subject matter 
contained in each book. 

In the autumn of 1900, it was advised by the stake 
board that the Y. L. M. I. A. members be invited to meet 
with their ward officers once a week to prepare their lesson 
for the following meeting. The outgrowth of this was the 


study-classes which were successfully carried on in nearly 
every ward in the stake and added so much to the interest 
and thoroughness of the work. Later, in 1904, when special 
class-leaders were appointed, a stake class was instituted for 
them, to which all officers and members were invited. Here 
special instructions were given in regard to the duties and 
responsibility of class-leaders, the best methods of present- 
ing lessons, morals to be deduced, etc. Each lesson was 
thoroughly outlined and practical demonstrations were made. 
This class continued to meet regularly two evenings each 
month. Since then more thorough and systematic work has 
been realized throughout the stake. 

In order to systematize and properly record the visiting 
done by the stake officers to the different associations, each 
member of the stake board was provided with a book ruled 
and printed with appropriate headings, wherein was recorded 
all the facts desirable to be retained. Reports from these 
books were given monthly to the board. Each association 
was also provided with a similar book in which the stake of- 
ficer records any suggestion or criticism needful to the asso- 
ciation. The members of the board also engaged in doing 
individual work among the careless and wayward girls, as 
well as visiting the organizations, and much good was thus 

In May, 1909, Sister Mary D. L. Hendrickson, after 
many years of faithful labor, handed in her resignation and 
its acceptance by the stake presidency released her board 
of workers which consisted at that time of Martha W. Car- 
lisle as first counselor; Ellen Barber as second counselor; 
Nellie Page as secretary, and Jean C. Thatcher, Sophia W. 
Cardon, Ray Robinson, Jemima Campbell, Ranghild Bro- 
berg, Zella Smart, Julia N. Howell, Sarah M. Yeates and 
Nettie M. Daines as aids. The new Y. L. M. I. A. board of 
Cache stake accepted the same month was as follows: Re- 
becca E. Stewart, president; Leah D. Widtsoe, first coun- 
selor; Laura R. Merrill, second counselor; Myrtle Q. Merk- 
ley, secretary; Pearl C. Sloan, treasurer; Alice Kewley, li- 
brarian; Louise W. Skidmore, Lizzie O. McKay, Hilda 
Eliason, Lydia B. Hogansen, Emily A. Mecham, and Dian- 
tha Hammond, aids. During the same year the following 
sisters were added to the board: Mamie Brown, organist: 

362 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Anna Nibley, Clara Carlisle, Fannie M. Vernon, Rozina 
Skidmore, Hazel Love, Nettie M. Daines, Blanche Cooper, 
Diana B. Thatcher, aids. The resignations of Hilda Eliason 
Dollar, Diantha Hammond, Emily A. Mecham, Hazel Love, 
Lizzie O. McKay and Alice Kewley have been accepted, and 
Viola H. Gardner, Charlotte Stewart, Alberta S. Porter, Mar- 
garet Call Morris and Abbie Groesbeck have been added. 

The stake board was very successful in the line of spe- 
cial work taken up in the summer of 1909. After careful 
thought the sisters decided to hold sewing meetings in each 
ward to prepare for bazaars to be held in the fall. The pro- 
ceeds of the bazaars were to be used in fitting up a M. I. A. 
home, the need of which had been long felt. In the June 
officers' meeting there were offered to the wards carefully ar- 
ranged outlines for the summer's sewing work. The testi- 
mony meetings were held regularly each month, and special 
effort was made to keep them the largest and best of the 
sessions; the other three nights were given to sewing by all 
the girls but one who read aloud from one of the books of the 
literary course. Each ward was canvassed and contributions 
of any material which might be made up into articles to be 
sold were gladly accepted. This helped to make the people 
in general interested in the undertaking. In the fall the 
young men asked permission to join in the work and they 
added greatly to the success of the bazaars. Each ward had 
some kind of program, in connection with the selling of the 
hand-made articles, for their evening's entertainment. The 
result was a feeling of unity among the different Mutual 
workers while more than one thousand dollars stood to the 
credit of the two boards after one tenth of its earnings was 
returned to each ward. Some time before, the Church au- 
thorities had given the Preston block, a large building near 
the corner of Main and First North streets, to the Mutual Im- 
provement Association. From the funds thus raised this 
building was fitted up with reading room, gymnasium, rest 
room and bath. The rooms were formally opened March 12, 
1910, when more than seven hundred persons visited them. As 
a whole the work was a great success and the local workers, 
who had labored so diligently, felt fully repaid for their ef- 
forts. Since the formal opening in March, 1910, a large por- 
tion of the upper part of the building has been fitted up into a 


very convenient social hall, and a great many of the Mutual 
parties are being- held here. 

In planning- work for the summer of 1910, the stake board 
endeavored to exemplify the principle that development must 
not be one but many sided, physical, mental and spiritual. 
The response to the invitation given, for a series of lessons 
in physical education, was far beyond expectations, so that 
after the first evening- they were obliged to adjourn from the 
quarters in the Preston block to more commodious accom- 
modations, generously afforded by the officials of the Brig-ham 
Young- Colleg-e. The plan for the summer is to follow the 
physical work each evening" with a literary lesson embracing" 
a study of some of the most noted of the American Short 
Stories. Talks will be contributed by different educators of 
Logan. The regular testimony meeting- will be held once a 
month and material taken from the biography of Heber C. 
Kimball and the autobiography of Parley P. Pratt will be 
used as an inspiration in bearing" testimony. 


In May, 1910, the Carbon 
stake was organized with 
several towns taken from 
the northern and western 
parts of Emery stake, and 
one or two from Utah 
county. The towns in this 
new stake are: Price, 
Sunnyside, Winter Quar- 
ters, Pleasant Valley, 
Castle Gate, Scofield, and 
Spring Glen. In most of the 
wards the Y. L. M. I. A's 
were organized before the 
division of the stake. But 
a new stake presidency of 
the Mutuals was effected 

and the officers of the Y. L. ARABELLA BRANCH 

M. I. A. are: president 

Arabella Branch; counselors Mary Mathis and May Smith; 
secretary Enid Harmon. 




This stake, situated in southern Idaho embracing 
Cassia, Lincoln, Twin Falls and Elaine counties in Idaho, 
and a part of Cache county, Utah, was organized in November, 
1887. It was, prior to its organization, a part of the Box 
Elder stake. In recent years the territory embraced within 
this stake has developed into one of the most important 
agricultural and stock-growing districts in the state, 

and there has come to its 
sturdy settlers both happi- 
ness and prosperity. Need- 
less to say that the Saints 
who first settled that part 
of the Gem state, and others 
who have settled there in 
more recent years, are of 
very best type of Saint and 
citizen, willing alike to suffer 
and make sacrifice for the 
reclaiming of the desert, the 
establishment of civilization 
in the wilderness, and the 
worship of God, accord- 
ing to the dictates of con- 
science. The love of God 
and the fellowship with 
each other are essential ele- 
ments of success. The girls 
of the Cassia stake are 
fortunate in that they are 
isolated from many of the 

allurements and follies w T hich make spiritual progress 
difficult in the more populous centers of civilization. 

The stake board of the Y. L. M. I. A. was organized 
Nov. 19, 1889, by Elder John W. Taylor, of the quorum of 
the Twelve, assisted by Elder Seymour B. Young, of the 
First Council of Seventy. RosabelA. Brim was chosen pres- 
ident, with Sarah E. Bates and Urilda J. McBride as coun- 
selors, and Louie Mahoney secretary and treasurer. In 1895 



Sister Mahoney was released, and Minnie T. Pickett was 
selected to siicceed her. 

For nine years after the organization, the association 
held quarterly conferences, and in 1898 they began to hold 
annual conjoint conferences with the Y. M. M. I. A. which 
were supplemented with two district conferences each year. 

The following sisters have served on the stake board as 
officers in the following positions: presidents Rosabel A. 
Brim and Maud A. Thomas; counselors Sarah E. Bates, 
Urilda J. McBride, Emma Elison, Effie H. Walker and Lula 
B. Voyce; secretaries and treasurers Louie Mahoney, Minnie 
T. Pickett, Alice M. Peterson, Luella B. Standfield, Lilias 
M. Meacham, Emma C. Darrington and Maud M. T. Clark; 
aids Ray L. Ormsby, Luella B. Standfield, Sarah E. Rob- 
inson, Lucina Beecher, Helen Edwards, Alice M. Peterson, 
Lottie Bach, Ammer Pickett, Ida L. Belnap, Abby Ward, 
Mea M. Johnson, Ella Elison, Jessie S. Merrill, Maud 
Alexander, Julia S. McBride, Lois H. Richins, Luella F. 
Bulkley, Lucynthia Robbins and Rhoda R. Peterson. 

The annual report from this stake furnishes the following 
interesting totals: Twenty associations, with an enrollment 
of 568, who subscribe for 329 Y. L. Journals, for the year 
1910. The following figures show that the young ladies of 
the Cassia stake enjoy the reading habit: Fiction, 14,032 
chapters; poetry, 3,803 pieces; essays, 1,224; history, 2,387 
chapters; theology, 9,271 chapters; miscellaneous, 18,317 
pieces; testimonies for the same year number 10,076. 

The stake is spread over an immense area of country, so 
that it requires more than five hundred miles travel by team , 
to visit the nineteen wards and associations. Considering 
all the circumstances, the young ladies of this stake are ac- 
complishing a marvelous work, and are entitled to the highest 
commendation for their labors. 


The fruitful and beautiful Davis county, lying just be- 
tween Salt Lake and Weber valleys, a part of both it might 
be said, has many advantages both of climate and propin- 
quity to the two great centers of the state. There are a 
number of thriving villages lying along its foothills, and great 

366 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

orchards wave fruitful welcome to the canyon breezes, while 
the vegetable gardens are rich and abundant. This stake 
was under the charge of the famous pioneer Christopher 
Lay ton. Many other strong men united with the kindly old 
patriarch in establishing prosperity and peace in its borders. 
Davis stake has nurtured as many sturdy sons and as many 
beautiful daughters within its confines as any county in the 
west; therefore, good things are expected of its organiza- 

The first organization of the Y. L. M. I. A. in this stake 
was formed in Bountiful July 10, 1878, by Eliza R. Snow, 
assisted by EmmelineB. Wells. The stake president, Wil- 
liam R. Smith, with the Relief Society officers, Sarah J. 
Holmes, Mary S. Clark and Nancy A. Clark, were likewise 
present at this locally historic meeting. Sister Nancy A. 
Clark was made president of the new association with Miss 
Wealthy Richards as secretary. Later Sarah Louise Rob- 
erts and Helen Hyde were chosen as counselors and Phoebe 
A. Peart as treasurer. At the first conference of this organ- 
ization, held in Farmington, October 17, 1878, Sisters 
Elmina S. Taylor and M. Isabella Home were present. The 
first conjoint conference of the two branches of the M. I. A. 
was held in this stake at Farmington, May 25th, 1879. For 
ten years thereafter, these conferences were held quarterly, 
and after that, they were convened semi- annually. 

At a M. I. A. conference held in Centre ville, July 2, 
1882, which was attended by Sisters E. S. Taylor and Emme- 
line B. Wells, President Nancy A. Clark was honorably re- 
leased from her position in the Y. L. M. I. A., as she had 
been called to assume the presidency of the Relief Societies 
of the stake. Margaret E. Leonard was appointed president 
pro tern, with Helen M. Miller and Wealthy Richards Clark, 
counselors, which constituted the presidency of the stake 
until June 17, 1883, when, at a young people's conference, 
held in Centreville, Elizabeth W. Smith was chosen as presi- 
dent of the Young Ladies of the stake, with Wealthy Rich- 
ards Clark and Emily Porter as her counselors. 

For twenty- two years, Sister Elizabeth W. Smith car- 
ried the presidency of this stake with dignity and gentle 
firmness. During that time, the Journal was started in Salt 
Lake City, the Guides were issued with their formal pro- 



grams and difficult studies; other officers came and went 
upon her stake board; one of her officers, Emily Porter Par- 
rish, filled an honorable mission to Great Britain; conferences 
were held, officers' meeting's inaugurated, and finally, study 
meetings of officers, and formal class leaders, were all intro- 
duced by this capable and faithful officer. The stake records 
were kept, from the inception of the work, in the best of con- 
dition. The traveling library was also made a successful 
feature of this administration; boxes were provided and the 
books were kept in circulation. When the Women's Build- 
ing in Salt Lake City was projected, this stake hastened and 
sent as its first contribution (in 1901) $139.90. In every 
other line of work, these sisters labored with signal success. 
So active were the labors of the two wings of the Mutual 
Improvement Associations in Davis stake, that the stake 
authorities finally decided that it would be profitable to di- 
vide the stake into a north district and a south district for 
Mutual Improvement work. So this was done on October 
13, 1902. Prior to the division, the following had occupied 
positions upon the stake board: presidents Nancy A. Clark, 


368 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Margaret E. Leonard, and Elizabeth W. Smith; counse- 
lors Sarah Louise Roberts. Helen Hyde, Wealthy Richards 
Clark, Helen M. Miller, Emily Porter Parrish, Clara Saun- 
ders, Caddie Rich Parrish, and Mary Galbraith Laycock; sec- 
retaries and treasurers Wealthy Richards Clark, Phoebe H. 
Peart, Mary E. Thornley, Athalia Miller Steed, Caddie 
Xnowlton, Mary Saunders Leonard, Nellie Barton, Rhoda 
Knowlton; aids Mary G. Laycock, Caddie Rich Parrish, 
Eloise Lewis Burton, Jane Jennings Eldredge, Millie Ben- 
son Egan, Wealthy Richards Clark, Rebecca Angelina Nal- 
der, Comfort E. Flinders, Annie Cowley, Mary Randall 
Woolley, Mary Hyde Mortenson, Louie Oviatt Cotterill, 
Mary Saunders Leonard; traveling library committee Mary 
E. Woolley, Annie S. Neville. 

When the two districts were formed, Oct. 13, 1902, the 
sisters were loath to part. A division was made of the funds 
and books on hand and each new board started to work ear- 
nestly. If President Elizabeth W. Smith felt disheartened at 
losing so many of her efficient workers, she made no com- 
plaint, though Sister Eldredge, the new president of the 
southern part, confessed to a feeling of regret that she 
should of necessity take from the former president so many 
faithful women, trained by her, who was now to lose their 
services, and, too, that her part of the stake had also the 
advantage of being now compactly settled with better facili- 
ties for travel. The officers chosen for the 

North Division 

were: president Elizabeth W. Smith; counselors Mary A. 
Mortenson and Mildred Thurgood; secretary Nellie H. Bar- 
ton; treasurer Rebecca Angelina Nalder. On October 25th 
of the same year, the following were added to the board: 
assistant secretary Lola M. Smith; chorister Nettie E. 
Stevenson; aids Comfort E. Flinders, Annie Phillips Lay- 
ton. May 17th, 1903, the first counselor resigned and was 
succeeded by Minnie A. Blood. 

In 1905, August 31, the north division was reorganized. 
Sister Elizabeth Smith, who had acted so successfully as 
stake president since June, 1883, was released but retained 
on the board as an honorary member, that the new officers 
might benefit by her rich experience. The new president, 


Minnie H. Blood, has made some splendid history during the 
five years of her incumbency. As one feature of merit we 
might mention: During- the last three years they have pre- 
pared, conjointly with the Young Men's Mutual Improve- 
ment Association stake officers, a course of summer work 
which has proved to be an inspiration to the associations. It 
has consisted of regular association work in the wards, special 
lessons and exercises appropriate to the season being intro- 
duced. A feature of the work has been an interchange of 
work among the associations, each ward conducting a pro- 
gram in the other wards of the stake during the summer. 
The public has shown an interest by a large attendance, and 
the members have been enthusiastic in carrying out the plan . 
The stake boards have prepared special programs which they 
themselves have presented in all of the wards, and they have 
been welcomed gladly by the association officers and mem- 
bers and by the Saints of the wards when their visits have 
been made. A traveling library has been successfully estab- 
lished. There are at present 1904 carefully selected books in 
use, and they are being read extensively. The volumes are 
divided into seven sections, the number of wards in the 
stake, and at regular intervals the sections are exchanged. 
Through the co-operation of the Young Men's board, who 
usually furnish transportation, the stake board -has been able 
to make more systematic and regular visits to the associa- 
tions, and it has found that the frequent attendance of stake 
officers at the local meetings is a source of encouragement 
and inspiration. Regular monthly stake board meetings are 
held with good attendance and interest, and monthly meet- 
ings of stake and local officers are held with much profit. 

The two divisions of the stake, as is the history in every 
similar case, find as much to do and feel as loving a burden 
in their new positions as in the old. Each division is busy, 
prosperous and full of zeal and good works. 

Those who have held positions on the board of the north 
division in addition to the ones already named, are: counse- 
lors Nellie H. Barton, Annie Laura Steed, Mamie Layton; 
secretaries Winnif red Stevenson, Rhoda A. Miller, Annette 
E. Stevenson; librarians Emily C. Barnes, Elizabeth 
Barnes, Kate A. Ellison, Mary Swan; aids Mildred L. 
Thurgood, Winnifred S. Evans; organist and chorister 
Maud Layton. 



South Division. 

The woman chosen to act as president of the south divi- 
sion had been active for years in the Davis stake Y. L. M.I. A. 
It was Jane J. Eldredge, a daughter of that famous pioneer 
merchant, William Jennings, herself full of initiative and en- 
ergy for the work laid thus upon her shoulders . Her counse - 
lors were one with her; and for a number of years they made 

South Davis stake a familiar 
word in all Mutual circles. 
Mammoth festivals were pro- 
jected, reaching down into 
Salt Lake City stakes, doub- 
ling up for Saltair or Lagoon 
excursions. The presidency 
of the General Board of both 
organizations were frequently 
entertained by South Davis 
officers and their happy min- 
gling became an inspiration 
to those eager workers in the 
nearby stake. The atmos- 
phere of the work done dur- 
ing this period was one of 
peace and quiet effort. Strife 
was not known, while the 
supreme effort of all officers 
was to perpetuate the gold- 
en legends of the Mutual 
Improvement work. Such 
has been their history. 
The south district consisted at first of seven local associ- 
ations, later increased to ten. Finances have always been 
of the most satisfactory character and much effort was ex- 
pended to facilitate prompt service and strict accountings. 
The women who have worked upon the board are then and 
now of the best type. Sister Eldredge resigned in 1909, but 
her successor has carried on the successful work. During 
the last three years the girls have responded freely to the call 
of the Deseret Hospital to furnish fruit. But the supreme 
emphasis of these girls has been placed upon the control of 
ward amusements. The dances, home or ward theatricals, 



with moving 1 - picture shows and all other entertainments, 
were placed largely in their keeping. Out of this has grown 
through the initiative of one of their brightest officers, Susie 
D. Clark, a system of supplementary evenings, devoted to 
"class preparation." The officers and members who have 
been placed on the program meet once or twice a month to 
prepare lessons. During the last summer these classes be- 
came so popular that all members were finally allowed to en- 
ter the ranks. The social feature, which consisted of excel- 
lent but simple refreshments served after lessons were over, 
and the accompanying chat and good comradeship, added 
greatly to the attractions. The classes were taken from 
home to home, thus permitting: each girl to act as hostess; 
all were given thus an opportunity to become "popular," and 
to develop the best instincts of hospitality. The means 
raised in social dances and other public entertainments given 
by these busy young people of South Davis stake are used 
largely to help missionaries to their fields of labor. The 
book of Life is thus becoming their chief asset. 

The names of those who have acted on this board are as 
follows: presidents Jane Jennings Eldredge and Maria 
Clark: counselors Louisa Coltrin, Mary E. Woolley, Maria 
Clark, Maria Coltrin, Lizzie Hatch, Edith Walsh and Mary 
Tuttle; secretaries and treasurers Annie Cowley Willey, 
Florence E. Barlow, Rhoda Knowlton, Mary E. Argyle, Orla 
Coltrin, Clara Smith, Gertrude Arbuckle and Clara Earl; aids 
Nellie Moon, Louie Cottrell, Caddie R. Parrish, Mary A. 
Willey, Cora Moss, Eva Grant, Elizabeth Moss, Millie Egan, 
Nellie Wood, Effie'P. Eldredge, Nettie Taylor, Lucy Wool- 
slayer, Fanny Parrish, Nellie Moon, Clara Rose, Mabel Barlow, 
Mabel Randall, Jessie E. Stringham, Lizzie Hatch, Susie D. 
Clark, Rachel Howard, Sarah Hogan, Amy Z. Porter, Thalia 
N. Steed, Joan V. Barlow, Judith Welling, Eliza N. Barlow, 
Clara Earl, Afton R. Mabey, Nellie Randall, May C. Burns 
and Maud Atkinson; chorister Lucy Garrett; organist 
Fanny Barlow. 


Emery is situated in the middle eastern portion of Utah, 
with great stretches of land, not much water, but with quan- 



titles of coal in her big mountain heart. The people of this 
stake have met with like scenes and incidents attendant upon 
settling- new regions, and have conquered in like brave 

The stake Y. L. M. I. A. was organized in 1882 with 
Emma Seeley, president; Annie Debs and Sarah Jensen, 
counselors; and Emma Bench, secretary. Since that time 

the following sisters have 
acted on the board: pres- 
idents Lodema Cheney, 
Susannah Jewkes, Ivy Hill 
and Elsina Petersen; coun- 
selors Maria Wakefield, 
Persis Roberts, Amelia 
Jewkes, May Oliphant, 
Emma Wakefield, May 
Loveless, Hettie Me Ar- 
thur, Zina Larson, Dag- 
mar Williams, Amy Staker 
Howard and May Elder; 
secretaries and treasurers 
Hannah M. Larson, 
Susan Wakefield, Luella 
Wakefield, Amelia Larsen, 
Maria Killian, Maud Bun- 
nel, LileHill, Pearl Seeley, 
Stella Seeley, and Venice 
Johansen; librarian Ethel 
Larsen; aids Mary J. 
King, Emma Wakefield, 

May Stewart, Emma Edwards, Lillie Smith, Amelia Jewkes, 
Mary Brasher, Clara Wickman, Nessie Oliphant, Laura 
Rasmussen, Florence Horsley, Geneva Oversen Larsen, 
Ellen B. Johnson, Emily Jiidd, Enid Harmon, Harriet 
Allred, Pearl Seeley, Katie Mathis, Agnes Liddell, Emily 
Judd; organists Ruth Fox and Hazel Frandsen. 

There were but few wards when this stake was organized, 
but in the next few years four other ward associations were 
added. In the year 1885, there was an enrolled membership 
of 115 members. In 1887 various sums of money were col- 
lected from the girls in various ways, and $5.00 was given 



to the Manti Temple and $12.50 toother charitable purposes; 
later $10.00 was given by the girls to the domestic science 
department of the B. Y. U. at Provo. 

For a number of years the programs were confined to 
musical selections and readings; but after 1896, the Guide 
lessons were taken up and found to be instructive and prac- 
ticable. In 1904-5 a traveling library was established con- 
taining 162 volumes. 

There were fourteen wards in this stake up to May, 1910, 
when the stake was divided , and Carbon stake was organized 
out of the towns lying in Carbon county. The girls of both 
these stakes are earnest workers and truly desirous of ac- 
complishing all that is set before them to do. 


This stake is composed of the northeastern portion of 
Salt Lake City, and was organized in 1904. On the 21st of 
April of that year, a special conference of the stake was called 
and the stake boards of the auxiliary organizations were 
appointed and set apart. The officers of the Y. L. M. I. 
Associations were as follows: president Emma Whitney 
Pyper; first counselor Helena M. Walsh; second counselor 
Lucy Grant Cannon; secretary Hattie Whitnej^; treasurer 
Claire Williams. At a later date, Sisters Mary F. Kelly, 
Phoebe Scholes and Vilate Clayton Young were chosen as aids. 
It was to be expected that this organization , composed as it 
was of a class of young women who had had all the advantages 
of superior schools and long training in Mutual work, would 
excel in the intellectual features of the work. They had 
another advantage; a woman was placed at the head whose 
humility was equaled only by the sweetness and beauty of 
her character. It followed, naturally, that the spiritual side 
of the work would be kept as active as it was in the fine old 
days of the Salt Lake stake history. This hope has been 
realized. The testimony meetings of this stake excel in in- 
terest and value all other meetings, good as the others are. 
The intellectual side of the work is kept at a high standard; 
and they lead off in the matter of subscriptions to the Journal. 
In one ward where there are forty- seven members enrolled, 
there are forty-seven subscribers to the Journal. There is a 



commendable feeling of 
unity between the workers 
of the Young- Men's and 
Young: Ladies' Associations 
among- the local and stake 
officers. The atmosphere 
of the stake is pre-eminently 
that of modest and dignified 
earnestness. The officers 
feel and manifest the spirit 
of companionship and com- 
radeship to each other and 
to every girl in the asso- 
.ciations, and it is safe to 
predict g-enuine and splendid 
results from their labors. 

The following- officers 
have served on this board: 
president Emma Whitney 
Pyper; counselors Helena 
M. Walsh, Lucy Grant Can- 
non , Maud May Babcock and 
Ann D. Groesbeck; secre- 
taries and treasurers-Hattie 
Whitney Saville and Claire 
Williams; choristers and or- 
ganists Valeria B. Young 
and Jennie Romney; aids 
Mary F. Kelly, Phoebe 
Scholes, Vilate Clayton 
Young-, Alice Duncomb, 
Mag-gie Bassett, Rachel 
Grant Taylor, Minnie J. 
Whitney, PriscillaL. Evans, 
Birdie S. Harding, Annie S. 
Milne , Virginia B . Stephens , 
Laura P. Corey, Elsie J. 
Ward, Blanch Caine, Ellen 
C. Henderson and Sylvia 





The stake of Fremont, created in 1898, covered those dis- 
tricts again divided into three stakes of Fremont, Yellowstone, 
and Teton. This rapidly growing- section of the rich valleys 
lying along the course of the Snake river was full of history- 
making forces; and in no division of spiritual labor was 
there a more marked growth and development than in the 
associations devoted especially to the daughters of Zion. 


Sister Ellen M. Ricks who had been president of the Y. 
L. M. I. A. of Bannock stake, was retained as president of 
Fremont stake, she living in the northern half and therefore 
in the newly created stake. She had for her counselors 
Kate Paul and Sarah J. Tempest, who were counselors in 
very deed. Their energetic help and faithful attention to 
detail work, with the sympathetic insight into girl nature 
which characterized Sister Paul especially, proved of the ut- 
most value in laying a firm foundation for the future growth 
of this important work. 

Few of the stakes of younger years realize what Y. L. 

376 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

M. I. A. meant in these newly settled sections of country. 
It meant traveling- hundreds of miles, with the thermometer 
twenty degrees or more below zero; it often meant traveling- 
thirty-five miles to hold three meetings (at 2, 4:30 and 6:30 
p. m.) then thirty-five miles home in one day; meeting- young- 
mothers, carrying- their babies through blistering- sun and 
tall sagebrush, to the distant log- schoolhouse to find 
perhaps three or four girls; meetings to be held, 
however, encouragement to be given, and then [the sis- 


ters to pass on to the next primitive town of a few log- 
houses. They would meet similar conditions in each locality 
but each of the isolated young matrons was willing- to sacri- 
fice much and travel far to gfive and to receive inspiration for 
her duties. 

Hannah Grover was chosen Jan. 28th, 1901, to succeed 
Sister Ricks who resigned because of inability to travel the 
long and difficult journeys. Miss Grover put all the energies 
of her thoroughly trained and intelligent mind to 'this work, 
and excellent and gratifying- results followed her three years 
labors. The stake was districted off, and two district offi- 


cers' meetings were held monthly to study the Guide lessons 
and consider plans for work. In 1910 there were 1800 girls 
enrolled in the Mutuals, and they were busy collecting- books 
for their traveling- library, holding- concerts to raise funds, 
mingling in ward and stake officers' meetings, as well asset- 
ting apart a separate night in some of the wards for the girls 
to meet weekly and prepare their lessons. 

The stake Y. L. M. I. A. was again reorganized in 
October, 1904, and L. Jane Osborn was chosen to succeed 
Sister Grover, who had moved away. Miss Osborn has 
proved herself a worthy successor, and has carried on the 
various lines of work with vigor and intelligence. In addi- 
tion to other activities noted, the girls held a great bazaar in 
December, }905, from which they realized over $300, which 
was used to defray traveling expenses. At this time there 
were thirteen associations, and each association was visited 
by the stake officers every two months or oftener. 

Teton and Yellowstone stakes have been cut out from 
this once straggling and wide-distanced stake. But the good 
work in the Mutuals goes steadily on. That is one of the 
most gratifying features of the work of the Lord. No mat- 
ter how much it is divided up into sections and cross sections, 
the original division soon seems as large as formerly, and 
each new stake appears as populous and important as when all 
were in one. 

The keynote of the Fremont stake Y. L. M. I. A. is 
that of thoroughness of organization and depth of spiritual 
teachings; a truly model combination. 

The officers who have served in various capacities on 
this board are: presidents Ellen M. Ricks, Hannah Grover, 
and L. Jane Osborn; counselors Kate Paul, Sarah J. Tem- 
pest, L. Jane Osborn, Zilpha Bramwell, Hannah Davis, Re- 
becca Watson, Martha Lloyd, Alverretta Engar, Mary Gee; 
as secretaries and treasurers Ellen R. Archibald, L. Jane 
Osborn, Mabel Walker, M. May Ricks, Lois Archibald, Rebec- 
ca Watson, Mary E. Gee, Edith Hansen and Gladys Bassett; 
aids Lorena Flamm, Annie Harris, Mamie Collett, Emily 
Tonks, Kate Hamlin, Martha Lloyd, Mary Webster, Ida F. 
Reid, Luna Ordell Paul, Ray L. Ormsby, Kate Paul, Mary 
A. Farnsworth, Sarah Bramwell, Lavina Walker, Emma 
Flamm, Lucy Harris Salisbury, Finnie Hale, Ella Williams, 

378 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Delia A. Curtis, Minnie Hale, Mary Beckstead, Bertha 
Kerr, Francis Dalby; librarians Minnie Hinckley, Mary 
Hill, Libbie Spori, Ella Williams, Inga Shurtliff, Delia Wai- 
dram Rans; choristers Mae Andrus and Eunice Jacobson. 
As an evidence of the minuteness of detail which is so 
much a feature of this stake's work, it might be mentioned 
that in many of the wards the girls meet on Tuesday after- 
noons to sew and read , to have socials and to prepare their 
lesson for the evening. Another item of interest; the stake 
board itself was divided up into three general study commit- 
tees on literature, history and religious work. Suggestive 
programs were outlined by these committees for the summer's 
work, and for the conjoint Sabbath evenings. They also took 
direct charge of the various Guide studies which came under 
their lines of study. Again, the wards purchased separate 
roll books and entered therein all the chapters of home read- 
ings reported by each member, and these in turn are re- 
ported to the stake secretary and librarian. With the fre- 
quent district conferences and constant active visiting, it 
may be seen that this stake is very active and full of spirit- 
ual zeal. 


This stake is certainly one of the banner stakes of the 
Church. Each quorum of stake officers is in the lead in things 
spiritual and progressive. Especially is this true of the Y. L. 
M. I. A. Alert, resourceful and delicately sensitive to the 
manifestations of the good spirit, the board, presided over by 
Zina Bennion Cannon, the modest, refined wife of Elder John 
M. Cannon, is permeated by the righteous advancement 
which marks her own way in life. The stake embraces the 
southern portion of Salt Lake City, beginning generally at 
Tenth South street and extending south about nine miles, 
and from the Wasatch mountains on the east to the Oquirrhs 
on the west. On the 28th of January, 1900, the Y.L. M.I. A. was 
organized in a stake capacity, and Mrs. Zina Bennion Cannon 
was appointed president. Her officers have changed and her 
family has increased with due rapidity; but this brave little 
woman has carried along her two-fold heavy burden with 
remarkable success and decision. There were fourteen as- 



sociations when the stake was organized, and now there are 
twenty-one, making- this one of the most populous centers in 
the Church. Those who live in the country may think it a 
hardship to go a few miles by team; but it is nearly as diffi- 
cult for the various officers of this stake to gather, as one 
must sometimes take two or three lines of cars, coming up 
into the heart of Salt Lake City to change cars, and then 

going back four miles to their 
tabernacle on Fourteenth South 
and State streets. However, so 
general is the spirit of enthusi- 
asm among these Saints that 
there is always a record attend- 
ance at the monthly stake 
meetings as well as at all con- 

The lessons given in the 
Guide have been studiously and 
intelligently followed during 
the winter seasons, and they 
have been made alive with 
meaning. To do this, the 
stake resources have been taxed 
for speakers, for material of 
both spiritual and ethical kinds, 
so that a constant interchange 
of speakers and workers keeps 
the life fcood of the body -re- 
ligious in constant and healthy motion. The summer's work 
has been original and very vahiable. Much of it has lain 
along physical and hygienic lines. The Young Ladies' stake 
board have mapped out careful lessons for the summer, and 
the topics have passed from the infant and its care to the 
very deepest lessons of sex development and sex-purity. 
Associated with this have been excellent lessons in the ethics 
of home, of social intercourse, and of the dress and character 
of the ideal girl. The dominant note of the work has been 
the development of the individual along simple and natural 
lines. To facilitate this work, the two Mutual Improvement 
local boards were divided into committees who were to be 
placed in direct charge of the amusements of the youth of 


380 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

this stake. These ward committees were under the super- 
vision of a general committee framed from the two stake 
boards. The value of the intimate relation thus established 
between the young people and their leaders in this work can 
scarcely be over-estimated. The last Friday of the month 
was set aside by the stake authorities as a general night for 
all to mingle in some form of general amusement, the pro- 
ceeds to be divided between the stake auxiliary organizations. 
The most unique feature growing out of the musical censor- 
ship was a musical contest, which has obtained during the 
past two years and which has been held in the stake taber- 
nacle. The trophy cup is the prize for the best mixed cho- 
rus, while $175.00 has been distributed in various cash prizes 
for musical excellence in other directions. The musical 
standard of this stake has been very sensibly raised through 
these delightful contests. 

With such objects and such officers is it any wonder that 
this stake comes close to being the leading one in all Israel? 

The following have acted as officers on the board: pres- 
ident Zina Bennion Cannon; counselors Mary B.Hamilton, 
Anna J. Murphy, Genevieve R. Pitt Curtis, Maggie P. 
Cardall, Elizabeth S. Pratt, M. May Merrill Fisher and 
Jennie H. Lloyd; secretary and treasurer Emma J. Websttr; 
assistant secretary Elizabeth Winder; corresponding secre- 
taries- Nell Fowler, Luella Young; aids Agnes M. Merrill. 
Nellie Spencer Cornwall, Leone Home Nowell, Isabella Erick- 
son, Genevieve R. Pitt (Curtis), Louise Mauss, Laura 
Bennion, Rena Wheeler, Elizabeth Dickson Miller, Eunice 
McRae, Letitia Eldredge Quist, Mamie Hill, Alice Neff, 
Leonora Mackay, Maggie P. Cardall, Amelia T. Carlisle, 
M. May Merrill, Alice Richards, Clarice I. Thatcher, Annie 
C. Kimball, Nellie C. Romney, Grace I. Frost, Maud E. 
Baggarley, Rosabell Hall, Flora D. Home, Margaret T. 
Irvine, Addie Cannon, Sarah McLelland, Jennie H. Lloyd, 
Minnie Fairbanks, Hope Russell, Helen M. Ellis; librarian 
Leone H. Nowell; choristers Catherine Gabbott, Lillie 
Shipp, Lisle Bradford. 


This stake comprises ten wards, cutoff from the south- 
ern portion of Cache stake, and all in Cache valley, there- 


fore its history is not of a long period; but, like others of the 
Cache valley towns, this stake has one town in which there 
was a pioneer retrenchment society. 

January 21, 1872. Hyrum ward was first organized as a 
Young Ladies' Retrenchment Society, by Bishop O. N. Lil- 
jenqftst; but in 1876 the name of the society was changed to 
the Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement Association. The 
society adopted the following resolutions as a guide of con- 

Resolved, that we, the young ladies of Hyrum, will, to 
the best of our ability, obey our parents, and will endeavor 
to so order our conduct that it shall meet the approval of our 
brethren who preside. 

Resolved , that we will as far as practicable , adorn our 
persons with the workmanship of our own hands, and en- 
courage home manufactures to the best of our ability. 

Resolved, that in our dress, we will be neat and encour- 
age others to be so; and by our example, will show that, by 
not following the ridiculous fashions of the day, we hope to 
bring about a wholesome reformation. 

Resolved, that in our conversation, we will endeavor to 
use language that will raise us, not only in the esteem of each 
other, but in that of the whole community. 

Resolved, that we, the young ladies of Hyrum, will en- 
deavor to be neat in our homes, and assist our mothers in the 
household duties that shall fit and prepare us to fulfill the 
important positions that lie before us. 

June 4, 1875, the Y. L. M. I. A. of Millville ward was 
organized by Brother John Jardine. Beyond this fact no in- 
formation is obtainable. 

The stake board of the Y. L. M. I. A. of Hyrum stake 
was partially organized in May, 1901; but the full organiza- 
tion was not completed until August 26, 1901, when Anna 
May Ralph was set apart as president by Apostle John Hen- 
ry Smith. The following sisters were selected to fill their 
respective positions: Lovisa H. Allen and Rose Liljenquist, 
counselors; Ida Allen, secretary and treasurer; Jennie Thore- 
sen, corresponding secretary; Harriet Green, organist; and 
Lucy Allen and Dora Wright, aids. 

The membership of Hyrum stake in November, 1901, 
was 476; January 1, 1910, it was 515. 



In addition to the above named, the following- sisters 
have occupied positions upon the stake board at various 
times: president Mary Eilertsen; counselors -Mary O. Hill, 
Louisa Bradley, Olive Correy and Elva Parkinson; secre- 
taries and treasurers Dora 
Wright, Birdie Savage, Lucy 
Allen, Lauretta Allen, Lov- 
ina A. Rose, Delia Allen and 
Elizabeth Israelsen; aids 
Barbara Nielsen, Emma Jack- 
son, Cassia Brenchley, Ar- 
della Johnson, Lovina A. 
Rose, Lucy E. Christensen, 
Edith J. Israelsen, Sarah C. 
Mitton, Alice Ladle, Grace 
King, Minnie Shaw; choris- 
ters and organists Isabella 
Obray, Jennie Christiansen, 
Lillian Fawseth, Margery 
Olsen; librarians -Jennie 
Christiansen and Sylvia Niel- 

For the summer of 1908 
and 1909 the conjoint stake 
boards of Mutual Improve- 
ment outlined programs 
which were carried out con- 
jointly by the local associations on Sunday evenings; the 
same general plan will be followed for the summer of 1910. 
The work done by the young ladies in this stake has 
been two-fold in its character; they were not content with the 
mere preparation of their lessons; but realizing that the de- 
velopment of character is always the primary object of every 
form of advancement and education, the officers have en- 
deavored to enthuse the members with the spirit of progress 
and a desire to make an eager search for the best in 
literature and history. The results are satisfactory, and the 
associations are moving forward to the common goal with 
speed tempered with right ideals. 





This stake comprises the southern portion of Salt Lake 
valley. It was organized in 1900, but as a portion of the 
famous old Salt Lake stake it had a long- and interesting 
history, some of its wards having- had organizations of the 
pioneer society for young women, the Retrenchment 

January 21, 1900, the stake 
organization of the Y. L. M. 
I. A. was effected, with Maria 
M. Holt, formerly an aid on 
the Salt Lake stake board, as 

The following sisters have 
acted on the stake board: 
presidents Maria M . Holt 
and Delila Gardner; coun- 
selors-Marina Hansen,Delila 
Gardner, Minnie J. Burgon, 
Emma S. Holt and Mabel E. 
Nelson; secretaries and treas- 
urersBertha Blake, Edith 
Smith, Emma S. Holt, Ge- 
nevaGarside, Clara F.Pearson 
and Bertha Wardle; aids 
Minnie Burgon, Edith Smith, 
Pearl Mitchel, Sebena Lar- 
sen, Marinda Goff, Lizzie 
Jensen, Janet Muir, Mary 
Rasmussen , LeonoraHoward, 

Sophia Gunderson, Clara F. Pearson, S. Louisa Gardner, 
Thora Johnson, Connie M. Garff, Mary G. Westlund, Lydia 
Otteson, Delvora Brady and Delila Freeman. 

This stake was presided over for six years by Maria M. 
Holt and when on April 22, 1906, she was called to a higher- 
position, that of first counselor of the Relief Society of the 
stake, the girls said good by to her with many regrets and 
much love. She was one of the quiet but faithful pillars of 
the work among women in this Church, and she trained her 
girls to be, as she was, ready at any minute to answer to the 
call of duty or affection. This stake is now in the efficient 


384 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

hands of Sister Delila Gardner, and the girls are taking- up 
the new and improved work outlined for them by the General 
Board with all the enthusiasm which marks the girls of all 
our progressive stakes. 

This stake is in excellent condition. They have an ad- 
dition to their working force that is rather unusual , in the 
person of Elder Niels Lind, as one of their aids, who is also 
the stake clerk. This brother was introduced to the stake 
officers by President J. W. W. Fitzgerald, on June 6, 1908, 
as an aid, appointed by the stake presidency to advise and 
counsel with them on their work. The young ladies report 
that great good has resulted from the kind help and care 
offered by this brother in his ministrations among them. 
Each stake presents and endeavors to solve its own individual 
problems, and thus we have another factor for good intro- 
duced into the associations. 


This stake began its work in a local ward, as so many 
others of the older stakes did. The Young Ladies' Retrench- 
ment Society was organized March 19, 1874, at Nephi, by 
Amelia Goldsbrough, then president of the Relief Society of 
that city. Charlotte H. Evans was appointed president; 
Alice Evans and Matilda Picton, counselors; Roxey Bigler, 
secretary; and Lois L. Foote, assistant secretary. The society 
began with an enrollment of only six members, but struggled 
bravely for fifteen months that is, until June 30, 1875 when 
a reorganization was effected in Nephi by Eliza R. Snow, 
and the name of the society was changed to Young Ladies' 
Mutual Improvement Association. The following officers 
were then selected: Hannah Grover, superintendent; Ann 
M. McCune, assistant superintendent; Matilda E. Picton, 
local president; with M. A. Parkes, Elizabeth E. McCune, 
Emma Bryan, Mary Udall, Mary Hoyt and Mary E. Harley 
as counselors; Roxey L. Blackburn, secretary, and Lois L. 
Foote, assistant secretary. 

For some time the meetings were held in the north school 
house, semi-monthly, on Friday afternoons, until word was 
sent by Eliza R. Snow that meetings should convene weekly, 
after which the association met every Monday. The exercises 
were informal; usually some one present read aloud from the 



Woman s Exponent and other publications, and occasionally 
the members bore their testimonies: while other meeting's 
were occupied with plain and fancy sewing, making quilts 
and carpets for the poor, or in braiding straw with which to 
make ladies' hats. An amusing- incident of those early 
struggles is related of the first local meetings in Nephi. For 
some months there were only two girls who put in an appear- 
ance at the meeting's the president and her secretary. 
But they two opened meet- 
ing 1 , called the roll, had a 
short program in order that 
no break should be made in 
their chain of meetings; and 
the secretary in recording 
her minutes always added 
that there was a "large and 
respectable congregation 
present." In explanation 
she said, "the president was 
large, and I surely was re- 
spectable;" so there was no 
doubt about the truthfulness 
of her statement. 

With the advent of Pres- 
ident, later Apostle, George 
Teasdale, the Mutual Im- 
provement work in Juab 
stake received an infusion of 
strength, so much so that in 
1880, six years after starting 

with six members, in the face of predicted failure on the part 
of the people of little faith, there were three associations 
that at Nephi, numbering sixty- two members, with Kate Love 
as its president; that at Mona, comprising thirty-five mem- 
bers; and that at Levan with twenty- two members. 

In 1880 the stake Y. L. M. I. A. work was organized 
with Matilda E. Picton Teasdale as president, which 
position she occupied till her removal to Mexico, when a 
reorganization became necessary. This was effected October 
llth, 1892, with Elizabeth Grace McCune as president; Addie 



386 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Cazier and Lottie Rountree, counselors; Alice Lin ton, secre- 
tary; Kate Sorenson, aid. 

"Lizzie" McCtme, as she was lovingly called, labored at 
the head of this stake for over thirteen years, and when she 
removed to Ogden she left many sorrowful hearts behind her. 
At one time this stake held the mining towns of Mammoth, 
Eureka, Robinson, and Silver City in its borders. In all these 
towns there are thriving" Mutual Improvement Associations 
organized by President McCune and her co-workers, and their 
influence does much to steady the girls, supplying proper 
ideals and modest amusements in place of those which often 
prove the ruin of girls in such places. 

April 29, 1906, the Y. L. M. I. A. of Juab stake was re- 
organized with Addie Cazier as president; Mary May Chase 
and Delia Kendall as counselors; Bertha McPherson, 

The following sisters have acted on the stake board in 
the capacities named: presidents Matilda E. Teasdale, 
Elizabeth G. McCune and Lydia Addie Cazier; counselors 
Lydia A. Cazier, Lottie Rountree, Helen H. Grace, Etta 
Sid well, Letitia T. Teasdale, Mary May Chase, Delia Ken- 
dall Wynders, Margaret J. Paxman and Florence M. Lunt; 
secretaries and treasurers Alice Lin ton, Florence M. Lunt, 
Mary May Chase, Jane Stevenson, Alice Grover, Myrtle Big- 
ler, Emma Crawley, Florence Howell and Bertha McPherson; 
aids Kate Sorenson, Letitia T. Teasdale, Mary May Chase, 
Etta Sidwell, Jennie Belliston and Nellie S. Cowan; librari- 
ans Kate Grover, Louise Chappell, Kate Wilson, Mamie 
Pyper, Ida Potter and Lettie Jenkins; musical director and 
organist Louise Chappell. 

Changes have been made in the boundaries of the stake 
so that it now comprises only four associations, but the 
majority of the members are energetic, faithful and intelli- 
gent workers, and they are reaping rich harvests. 


When the "Mormon" people began to make settlements 
in Mexico, it was as old pioneers, or the sons of pioneers, 
with the resources of many years of experience in the diffi- 
cult art of making the desert to blossom as the rose that they 
essayed to conquer new conditions in a new, old country. 



Therefore, with their own rich experiences behind them, and 
with the Utah ideals ready to be adjusted to any need or 
call, these Mexican settlers were able to accomplish more 
in a few years, in spite of tremendous difficulties, than their 
fathers had in many years, under less favored circumstances. 
These pioneers took with them the germs of every organized 
force in Zion. As soon as a few crude homes were planted 

in the Juarez district, schools 
and auxiliary associations 
were at once organized. It 
woiild be impossible to speak 
of the Mexican mission with- 
out making reference to the 
devoted labors of the late 

; Apostle George Teasdale, and 

his no less devoted successor 
in office, Anthony W. Ivins. 
What this mission is today, 
is largely due to the wise 
leadership, far-seeing policy 
and tireless activity of these 
men. Though Bro. Ivins has 
been called to a wider sphere 
of action since his ordination 
as a member of the quorum 
of the Apostles, he has lost 
no interest in his friends and 
associates in far-away Mexico. 
The beginning in the Y. 
L. M. I. A. was made with a 
local association in Juarez, with Mrs. Dora Pratt as the pres- 
ident. She drew around her a corps of earnest officers, and 
they plunged at once into active work. Settlements mul- 
tiplied slowly, for the country was far away from ''home" 
and native land, with all the forbidding features of a semi- 
tropical and somewhat sterile country, needing much labor 
and prodigious patience to plant and sow, to garner and reap. 
And yet, they were "Mormons;" and who ever heard of 
"Mormons" making a failure! 

In 1892, there were three settlements in the Mexican 
country, and the whole were then gathered into one head, as 


388 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

a mission. Over the division of the Y. L. M. I. A. was placed 
Mrs. Matilda E. Teasdale, wife of Apostle George Teasdale. 
She chose for her counselors Fanny C. Harper and Libbie A. 
Beck; Sarah Christoffersen was named as secretary, with Ida 
E. Eyring as assistant secretary. These labored zealously 
till the death of their beloved president broke up the organiza- 
tion. Mrs. Dora Wilcken Pratt was sustained Feb. 27, 
1893, as her successor. She chose M. L. Teasdale and Sarah 
Christoffersen as her counselors, with Ida E. Eyring (Tur- 
ley), as secretary and treasurer, and Artemesia Redd 
(Romney), as assistant. Later, Fannie C. Harper and 
Nancy E. Durfee became the counselors. At this time 
the mission was reorganized as a stake, and the same officers 
were chosen to preside over the Y. L. M. I. A. They are 
still in active service; and the following have since acted 
upon the board: Ella Romney, Ella Cardon, Ada Mor- 
tensen, May Done, Florence Ivins, Lottie Green- 
wood, Louise Hansen, Julia Call, Ella Jones, Pearl Paine, aids. 
It must be remembered that the work attendant upon 
these associations is exacting and peculiar to itself. The cost 
of sending two representatives around the stake is over $65.00 
and double that in Mexican money. The trip takes a month, 
the distance between the central point and the farthest settle- 
ment on one side being 125 miles, and on the other 175. It is 
impossible for the girls to make this trip alone; for the roads 
lie through dangerous canyons, and the skill and courage of 
male protectors a/e indispensable. Therefore, the young 
men and young women put their dollars and dimes together, 
and make the circuit once a year. There are now 
nine associations to visit, and most of them can be 
visited but yearly, on account of distance. It is not an un- 
common thing for them to make their arrangements to visit 
a certain town, during their quiet season, which is the rainy 
season, and just as they are ready to start, a sudden driving, 
tropical rain will gorge the nearby stream , and passage is im- 
possible for many days. If the stream is large, there is some- 
times a ferry boat kept for such emergencies. But rain or 
shine, it is the Church and Kingdom of God or nothing to 
those devoted people of old Mexico. And what can not be 
done today will surely be accomplished tomorrow, for the 
thing is a duty. The men of this country work very 


hard, and are out in the fields and canyons much of the time; 
so that it happens, often, that while the girls are very wel- 
come to use the meetinghouses, they must sometimes act as 
their own janitors, and clean and prepare the hall before the 
session begins. It has been difficult to raise means; but the 
girls decided upon the plan of having each ward give some 
kind of an entertainment once each year, and the sum thus 
raised is sent to the stake for stake expenses. This has proved 
successful, and provides sufficient income. 

In the summer of 1908, some wards tried holding con- 
joint Sunday evening meetings. They were so successful 
that in 1909 they were held in all local associations and will 
be during the coming summer. For many years the girls 
have held weekly afternoon meetings in the summer at which 
they presented work specially suited to local conditions. 

With all its discouragements, this stake takes its full 
quota of Journals, is above the average in the payment of the 
dime fund, and altogether it is an organization to be proud 
of, both because of the things done, and the obstacles 


According to the Kanab stake history, the first stake as- 
sociation was conjoint in its character, and was presided over 
by William D. Johnson, Jr. This association was organized 
some time in 1883. Although the recorded history of this 
movement is meager, we may be sure there were some ex- 
cellent times enjoyed, and much good accomplished. But the 
association was rather short-lived, as it was not in accord 
with the general plan marked out for such work. In Sep- 
tember, 18 84, a regular stake Y. L. M. I. A. board was formed, 
and Malinda Farnsworth Mariger was made president; in 
June, 1886, Christina Nuttall was called to fill her place. In 
October, 1886, M. Maria Porter succeeded to this position, with 
Katherine Carpenter and Mary A. Stewart as her 
counselors. The experiment in practical communism, 
known among the Saints as the United Order, had 
its longest and best trial and success in the town 
of Orderville in this stake. Here grew into beauteous 
flower most of the virtues and blessings promised to the 



Saints who will enter into this advanced relation. True, it 
was not long enough in existence to bear much fruit, but the 
blossoms of faith, of patience and of true fellowship attained 
sufficient growth to convince all who took part, that some 
day there will be a delightful life for those who travel the 
road heavenward. 

The people in this stake are situated in one of the most 



forbidding and difficult parts of the state. The stake covers 
miles of desert country, and is far separated from railroads 
and modern improvements. But the people have been trained 
in all the Christian virtues, and the faith of the latter-day 
gospel. The Saints here have fulfilled the prediction made 
by President Brigham Young when he called these and the 
Dixie emigrants to fill up those barren wastes. Some one 
complained to him that the people could never raise crops in 
these counties. "Well," said he, "they will raise men and 
women." And such has been the case. For out of this 
small and struggling stake have come some of the finest men 


and women that now people and preside over the growing 
commonwealths of our surrounding- states and territories. 

A distinctive feature of the work here was the planning 
during the local presidency of M. Maria Porter in Orderville 
of one meeting- each month at which none but original exercises 
were presented. They consisted of songs, dialogues, stories, 
and essays. The idea was taken up by some of the other 
associations and has done much to foster literary work among 
the girls. 

M. Maria Porter with the two counselors named, 
continued faithfully in the positions to which they had been 
called, until September 16, 1900, when they were released in 
order to have the presidency reside in one place. 

The following sisters have acted upon the stake board: 
presidents Mai inda Mariger, Christina Nuttall, Mary Maria 
Porter, Mary E. Woolley, Artemesia Stewart, Elsie Chamber- 
lain, Abigail Cox, Josephine Adair and Kezia Esplin; coun- 
selors Katherine Carpenter, Mary A. Stewart, Emma Cut- 
ler, Wilma Brown, Harriet Spencer, Elsie Chamberlain, 
Matilda Baird, Ida Young, Eleanor Carroll, Mary Chamber- 
lain, Emma Seegmiller, Louie Lamb, Lillian Bowers and 
Clara Esplin; secretaries Ida Young-, Kezia Esplin, Kezia 
Lorene Heaton, Nabbie Spencer, Inez Heaton; organist 
Pearl Robertson; chorister Hester Payne; aids Grace Wool- 
ley, Ida Crosby. 


On February 26th. 1904, Liberty stake was organized 
out of the south-eastern part of Salt Lake City. The new 
stake included that part of the city east of Main street 
between Third South on the north and Tenth South on the 
south, with the following eight wards; First, Second, Third, 
Eighth, Ninth, Tenth, Thirty-first and Thirty-third. It re- 
ceived its name Liberty on account of Liberty Park being 
located within its boundaries. 

The first stake conference was held March 20th, 1904. 
At that time Lottie Paul Baxter, Margaret McKeever (Can- 
non) and Emily H. Higgs were sustained as the presidency 
of the Y. L. M. I. A. and the following sisters were added as 
the work grew and required their help: Myrtle Cartwright 



(Murdock), secretary and treasurer; Ella McAllister Ipson, 
assistant; aids Mary E. Irvine, Anna B. Iverson, Laura L. 
Tanner, Rena B. Maycock, Villette Eardley, Edith Woolley, 
Hilda Standing", Iretta Woolley, Gertrude M. Howard, Ellen 
Shepherd, Mae Mortensen, Ella McAllister, May Cannon, 
Edna Ridges, Rose J. Badger, Rosabella Ashton and Louise 
Ashton; chorister Iretta Woolley Jackson. 

The great majority of the people of Liberty stake belong- 
to the middle class. There are no very rich and no very 
poor among- them. Many newly married people settle there, 
for the location is good and property is less expensive than 
in some other parts of the city. The majority of the people 
own and live in their own comfortable, attractive homes. It 
is a part of the city that builds up rapidly and two new wards 
have since been added: Liberty, adjoining Liberty Park on 
the west, and Emigration, extending east from Ninth East 
and including Emigration Canyon. This canyon has re- 
cently been made very invit- 
ing, by the completion of an 
electric car line, which ex- 
tends through the same and 
carries many of the people, 
with their families, to cool, 
refreshing, resting places 
during the hot summer 

The Y. M. andY.L.M.I. 
officers appreciate their la- 
bors among the people. Both 
Senior and Junior classes 
are large and many mothers 
attend the associations with 
their growing daughters. 
The stake board begin their 
work five weeks before the 
associations open. Each of 
the wards holds a separate 
meeting with the stake offi- 
cers during this time. This 
gives a chance to become well 
acquainted with each other and the work. Plans for the com- 




ing year are talked over. The ward officers express themselves 
as to their feelings, desires and expectations for the coming 
year, and one enthuses the other. Where possible, the bishop 
meets with the girls and he and the stake officers do all in 
their power to encourage and bless the local officers. If or- 
ganizations are not complete, the local board is filled up. 

Just prior to the fall convention the stake Y. M. and Y. L. 
M. I. A. officers give, conjointly, a reception to all the local 
officers, bishops and their counselors, stake presidency, 
members of the high council and their wives. Light re- 



freshments are served; each ward furnishes one number on 
the program and a social time is enjoyed, permitting wide 
acquaintance and united feelings to spring up as the result 
of these parties. 

During the nine winter months of lesson work, monthly 
meetings are held, with both the stake Y. M. and Y. L. M. 
LA. officers, where conjoint stake business is attended to; 
another is held with the local officers, where lessons are 

394 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

studied, lectures are given or testimony meeting" is held. The 
officers of this stake have never felt justified in giving- up 
stake testimony meeting, for these meeting's are among their 

The stake Y. M. and Y. L. M. I. A. officers work unit- 
edly together with g-ood results. They believe in our motto 
"Mutual Improvement," and as early as January are plan- 
ning summer work for the boys and girls. 


The Malad stake was formed from portions of the Oneida 
and Box Elder stakes. On June 15th, 1888, a stake board 


of the Y. L. M. I. A. was organized with Elvira A. Harrison 
as president, Mary Jane Evans and Margaret Clarkson as 
counselors; Catherine Jones Palmer as secretary. There 
were only five ward Mutuals at that time, but the girls went 
to work with that vigor and devotion which have always char- 
acterized the young women of this Church. 


Previous to the issuance of Guides, the girls of this stake 
did their work along the same lines as other stakes had done: 
programs were arranged according to local conditions, with 
desultory committees in charge, and a general miscellaneous 
program. But there was a divine peace and harmony per- 
vading their meetings which compensated them for all loss of 
modern cut-and-dried outlines. However, the Guide work 
was adopted with enthusiasm when it came and has proved 
a real help to these outlying wards. With the officers two 
special lines of work have been emphasized: first, the girls 
must be ready with their lessons, and second, officers must 
attend to the duties of their calling. Especial stress has 
been laid on Journal subscriptions, and this stake is very 
prompt in its support of this periodical. Another most com- 
mendable feature is the fact that the records and minutes of 
the stake and the wards are all in excellent condition and 
have been from its first organization. The traveling library 
has been a boon to the girls, and the boxes are kept con- 
stantly on the move. 

One feature of their past and present condition is of 
vital worth to them, as it is to all others who would prosper 
in this Church: the boards of the two Mutuals are in perfect 
harmony with each other and with the presiding priesthood. 
This splendid condition, more than any other, has given to 
these girls in this somewhat isolated stake a congeniality and 
comradeship which is bred of such heavenly associations. 

Few changes have been made in the stake presidency of 
Malad Y. L. M. I. A. Sister Elvira A. Harrison has acted as 
president from the beginning. In addition to the ones al- 
ready mentioned the following have assisted her: counselors 
Elizabeth A. Hughes, Josephine Deschamps Jones, Annie 
E. Thomas and Mary Bolingbroke; as secretaries Margaret 
Jones, Ella Colton; treasurers Hettie M. Lusk, Mary E. 
Bolingbroke; librarian Mary Ellen Evans; organist 
Margaret Morgan Parry; choristers Jennie Morgan Evans, 
Marian Monson Talbot; aids Mary Ellen Evans, Elizabeth 
C. Davis, Nellie Morgan Stocking, Mary E. Morris, Eliza- 
beth Thomas, Elizabeth Wight Edwards, Elsie Merrill, 
Emma Martin, Nellie Morgan, Victoria Davis, and Margaret 
Morgan Parry. 

396 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. i. A. 


The Maricopa stake of Zion, located in the central por- 
tion of the southern part of Arizona, in the heart of the Salt 
river valley, is on the south side of Salt river, a torrential 
stream, whose waters, together with those of the Verdi river, 
are impounded, 60 miles east of Mesa, by the great Roose- 
velt Dam, making one of the largest artificial lakes or reser- 
voirs in the world. 

Before the reservoir was constructed the Salt river was 
a dangerous stream, at times doing damage to railroad bridges 
and threatening the neighboring towns of Lehi, Tempe 
and Phoenix. The town of Mesa, however, is outside of 
this danger zone, being located on a mesa overlooking the 
natural water course of the valley. 

The " Mormon" people first settled in what is now 
known as the Lehi ward. In 1877, "Uncle" Henry Rogers, 
famous as an Indian missionary and pioneer, was called by 
President Brigham Young, in company with Daniel W. 
Jones, to establish an Indian mission there. It is said Uncle 
Henry Rogers, before leaving Salt Lake City, saw in vision 
the identical place where this mission was to be established, 
and when the little travel- stained company reached the 
banks of Salt river, he recognized the exact spot. The follow- 
ing year a larger company from Idaho and Utah reached the 
valley, located the present town of Mesa, and built the Mesa 
canal. Much of the way the new canal runs through an old 
channel , used centuries ago by the Nephites or their descend- 
ants, while the numerous prehistoric ruins in the neighbor- 
hood have furnished many relics of pottery, stone axes, etc., 
which indicate a very ancient origin. 

To the visitor of today who sees this favored valley, 
filled with fenced farms, orange groves, olive trees, orchards 
of luscious fruit, fields of grain and alfalfa, as well as ostrich 
farms, waterways and handsome public and private build- 
ings, it seems almost incredible that only 30 years ago this 
was considered a forsaken and impossible part of the land of 

The four principal wards of the Maricopa stake are lo- 
cated close together, making it convenient for the officers to 
visit them; they are Mesa, Alma, Lehi, and Papago, while 
the Pine ward is located about 100 miles under the rim of the 


Mogollon mountains. On account of the distance and diffi- 
culty of reaching the latter ward, it gets but one visit a year, 
usually in the summer time, when ward conferences are 
held of all of the auxiliary organizations. In each of 
these wards except Papago, there is a thriving Y. L. M. I. 

The Papago, or Indian ward, is a most interesting fea- 
ture of this stake. It is presided over by Bishop Isaac H. 
Rogers, a son of the Arizona pioneer, who is 
devoted to his work among the dusky brethren, who number 
some 250 souls. He is assisted in the bishopric by two of the 
Lamanites, Valensuela, and Juan Baptiste. The former was 
his father's companion in most of his missionary labors 
among the Pima, Maricopa and Papago Indians, and assist- 
ed in baptizing most of them into the fold of Christ. The 
latter was educated at the Indian school at Phoenix. Prac- 
tically all of the younger people of this ward are being edu- 
cated at this Indian school, a number of Valensuela 's chil- 
dren holding positions there after their graduation. One of 
his daughters, Catherine Luni, attended the B. Y. Academy 
at Provo, and has a fine voice, which she used to distinct ad- 
vantage at the World's Fair in 1904, also singing in New 
York churches following the Fair. 

There have been many changes in the officers of the 
stake Y. L. M. I. A., and all have labored with their might, 
each doing her full share in bringing the organization to its 
present standard of usefulness. 

The Y. L. M. I. A. of the Maricopa stake was ef- 
fected soon after the stake was organized in 1878. Addie 
Passey became president, with Emily Pomeroy and Mary 
Jane Spilsbury as counselors, and Emeline Kimball as sec- 
retary. These counselors were later succeeded by Susie 
Wilcox and Sarah B. McDonald, and the secretary by Leah 
M. Peterson, with Emma^Ellsworth as assistant. 

In June, 1894, a reorganization took place, Ann E.Leav- 
itt becoming president, with Jeanette H. Johnson and Lula 
C. McDonald, counselors; Barbara Phelps, secretary, and 
Amy Robson, assistant. Later Mary L. Hibbert was chosen 
assistant secretary. 

Four years later President Leavitt was released, and 
Jeanette H. Johnson succeeded her, with Arthusa Johnson and 



Lula C. McDonald as counselors. During- President John- 
son's time the traveling- library was established and conduct- 
ed successfully. It has of late years been somewhat super- 
seded by the local libraries , which have grown materially. 

After three years Mary L. Hibbert became president, 
retaining- the same counselors, until the removal of Counse- 
lor Johnson to Canada, when Sister McDonald became first 
, , counselor and Lavern Rog- 
ers second counselor. During 
her administration, President 
Hibbert called to her assist- 
ance eight aids; they were: 
Addie S. Johnson, Luella 
Davis, Clara Allen, Emma 
Hakes, Fanna A. Dana, Lou- 
isa H. Rog-ers, Tena Mets, 
and Rose Lewis. In 1900 
Mag-gie Hawkins became an 
aid and Mrs. Dana succeeded 
Counselor Rog-ers. During 
the time of the two last men- 
tioned presidents, Barbara 
Phelps Allen and Belle Pom- 
eroy acted as secretary and 
assistant secretary respec- 

In September, 1905, the 
board was reorganized with 
Fanna A. Dana, president: 
Etta Pomeroy and Addie S. 
Johnson, counselors; Barbara P. Allen, secretary: Effie 
Phelps, assistant secretary and treasurer; Mary Clark, Mary 
Pomeroy, Pearl Allen, Amy LeBaron, Lillian Millett and 
Inez Earl, aids. Since that time the following have occu- 
pied positions on the board: Deborah Allen, Maggie Haw- 
kins, Amy LeBaron, Mamie Clark, Eliza Openshaw, coun- 
selors; Ellice Brizzie, Leah Peterson, secretaries; Emma Rol- 
lins, treasurer; Annie Lesueur, organist; Janey Standage, 
Ruth Holdren, Geneva Lesueur, aids. 

Great credit is due the present incumbent, Sister Fanna 
Dana, for the very efficient work now being~done by this or- 




ganization. Building on the experiences of the past, the 
summer work as well as "Field Day" festivity have been 
inaugurated under her presidency. For the past two sum- 
mers the M. I. Associations of the stake were given Sunday 
evenings for their meetings. They lighted the tabernacle 
ground^ by electricity, provided comfortable seats and dec- 
orations, and planned summer programs, with the view of 
inculcating the best ideals in literature and art, as well 

as of questions in which both 

^^^| old and young would be in- 

terested, thus making the 
summer season's work no less 
pleasant and profitable than 
the winter's; this plan brought 
the attendance up to between 
400 and 500. 

^v- While much of the win- 

j^Jm ter's work as well as the sum- 

,~-*3 mer's is done conjointly 

by the Y. M. and the Y. L. 
M. I. A., yet the finances are 
^|^^^ maintained separately. Ow- 
^fe ing to the great distance to 

M m ~^|PJ m Salt Lake City, the Y. L. M. 

^13 I. A. have quite a large sum 

to raise to send their delegate 
to the June conference; but 
by instituting bazaars, socials, 
parlor and other public func- 
tions, to raise the means, 
they never fail to be repre- 
sented at these important and necessary conventions. 



Millard stake embraces a large desert area. Only two 
towns in the western portion of it are touched by the rail- 
road; the others lie across the desert at distances varying 
from five to fifty miles. On account of these long distances, 
and the difficulty of traveling through the fine sand in fair 
weather and the soft mud in wet weather, the local officers 



have been under the necessity of depending much upon their 
own efforts and the help given them through the Journal. Many 
capable women have been at the head of the ward associa- 
tions, however, and the local work done has been of a high 
grade. The stake officers have been beloved by the girls 
and their visits have been a source of inspiration, even though 
circumstances prevented their giving much assistance to the 
local officers in the detail work. . In 1903 an effort was made 
to establish monthly officers' 
meetings, at the same time 
and place as the meetings of 
the stake priesthood, thus 
enabling the girls to travel 
the long distances with their 
fathers and brothers. The 
meeting would be held one 
month on the east side of the 
stake and the next on the 
west side; the girls in either 
side being expected to attend 
the meeting when held in 
that division. The stake was 
also districted and aids chosen 
from each district, who were 
given care of that particular 
section. The members of the 
stake board were expected to 
attend every monthly meet- 
ing. The stake officers have 
made it a rule to visit the 
eleven ward associations at 
least once a year, usually immediately before the general 
Mutual Improvement Association June conference. Such a 
trip requires something over two weeks of constant traveling 
and covers a distance of 186 miles through fine sand. 

The stake board of Y. L. M. I. A. was organized in 
August, 1883, with Isabella E. Robison, president; Lizzie 
Henry and E. J. Bennett, counselors; Carrie Henry, sec- 
retary. Later Annie Stringham was chosen to fill the po- 
sition of Sister Bennett who had moved away. 

In August, 1888, Susannah T. Robison succeeded to the 



presidency. At various times the following assisted her : 
counselors Susan Lyman, Mary Harmon, Mary M. Badger. 
Ella Bishop, Albertina Fisher; secretaries Angfie Hinckley, 
Nora Bishop, Anna Stephenson. 

The new stake board, organized September 19, 1909, 
consists of : president Maggie M. Hatch; counselors Alber- 
tina Fisher, Rose V. Jensen; secretary and treasurer Addie 
E. Hansen; aids Lois Robinson, Lula Johnson, Elizabeth 
Stewart, Alice Rappleye. 

For summer work of 1910 this stake plans to use the 
Granite stake outlines, finding them exactly suited to its 

Millard stake has labored under great difficulties, but it 
is coming forward by "leaps and bounds." Its resources are 
being conserved, reservoirs are being built, and it is claimed 
that it will yet become the granary of Utah. 


High up in the mountains, Weber canyon widens out 
into a beautiful valley about one and a half miles wide and 
ten miles long. It is a most fertile section, filled with well- 
cultivated farms and orchards which surprise and delight the 
traveler on the Union Pacific train who has been absorbed 
in the grandeur of the mountains. This valley makes up the 
Morgan stake. In the early days of Mutual Improvement, 
in fact before Mutual Improvement history proper began, 
Eliza R. Snow visited some of these towns and organized 
branches of the Retrenchment association . Morgan was the 
first organized, this occurring in the spring of 1876; later, in 
1878, another branch in the same town was organized. 

The first organization of the Y. L. M. I. A. of this stake 
was effected August 18, 1878, and had for its president 
Sarah A. Rawle. She had no counselors. Her resignation, 
on account of ill health, took place on October 25, 1879, when 
Sister Mary Jane Toomer was appointed president, with Jane 
Crouch and Priscilla Tucker as counselors, and Flora Rawle 
as secretary. These appointments were made at a conference, 
Sister Eliza R. Snow being present. 

August 3rd, 1884, Sister Toomer resigned, and her suc- 
cessor was Susannah Catherine Heiner, the third president 
of the association. Her counselors were Mary L. Welch and 




Elizabeth Turner. Flora R. Rich was secretary and Nettie 
Hogg assistant secretary. 

At a conference held August 6, 1893, Sister Heiner was 
honorably released. Her successor was Mary L. Welch, with 
Emma White and Mary A. Eddington as counselors; Nettie 
H. Durrant, secretary; Emma W. Clark, assistant secretary; 
Martha Jane Welch, treasurer; and Elizabeth Turner, Hannah 
Grover and Jessie Tag-gart, aids. 

On December 16, 1900, Sarah L. Eddington was appoint- 
ed president of the Morg-an stake organization; Emma 
White and Evelyn Harding, counselors; Nettie Durrant, sec- 
retary; Annie Wells, corresponding" secretary; Lizzie Camp- 
bell, treasurer and librarian; and Mary Turner, Inez Grover 
Toone, Esther Stewart, Jennie Rich, and Adria R. Porter, 

In 1902, Nettie Durrant was made first counselor, and 
Annie Wells was selected as secretary. In two years another 
complete change was made in the board, because of the 
removal of Sister Eddington to Idaho. July 10th, 1905, 


Nettie Durrant was set apart as president, with Mary Ann 
Eddington and Eva Robison as counselors; Sylvia Compton, 
secretary; Elizabeth Campbell, treasurer and librarian; Fan- 
nie Croft and Fannie Francis, aids. 

Another complete change was made June 7th, 1908, with 
the following- officers: president Annie S. Dickson; coun- 
selors Fannie Croft and Selma Francis; secretary Lillie 
Clark; treasurer and librarian Elizabeth Campbell; aids 
May Porter, Nettie Durrant, Rosetta Grover, Maggie Porter, 
Hahna Francis, Vera Meacham, Sarah Giles, Bertha Rich 
and Lovina Stewart. 

It may be said with truth that each officer and set of 
officers in this stake has labored faithfully and lovingly for 
the cause of Mutual Improvement. There is a very united 
spirit among the girls, therefore their work is indeed a labor 
of love. 

There are six local associations in the stake. The mem- 
bership during the year 1883 was 226, but it fell until, at the 
close of 1909, the number reached only 175. The principal 
reason for this falling off is probably that as the young people 
grew up they felt that there was not room for them; accord- 
ingly they moved into new country where they could take up 
farms and have room to grow. Many portions of Idaho and 
Wyoming were settled by these sturdy, industrious youths 
and maidens, and some of the best workers in the Mutual 
Improvement Associations of those states had their early 
training in Morgan stake. 


The Nebo stake was a part of Utah stake until the year 
1901, when the towns of Payson, Spanish Fork, Goshen and 
Santaquin, with small outlying wards, were formed into the 
new stake. Most of these towns are beautifully situated, 
with magnificent scenery, plenty of good water and excel- 
lent soil facilities. Many of the girls living in these Utah 
county towns have been able to get more or less of the inspir- 
ational training given at the Brigham Young University in 
Provo. This of itself is sufficient guarantee of the class of 
mental and spiritual work done by these favored young wom- 
en; and they have taken advantage of most of their oppor- 



The Y. L. M. I. A. of the Nebo stake was partially or- 
ganized on January 20, 1901, at a conference held at the 
tabernacle in Payson, simultaneously with the organization 
of that stake of Zion. Anna Nebeker was then set apart as 
the president of the board; but the full organization was not 
completed until February 17, 1901, when Lillie M. Fairbanks 
and Emma Page were chosen as counselors; Ann Loveless 
as recording secretary; Ida Hinkley as corresponding secre- 
tary; and Erdine Cushing as treasurer. The officers held 

regular meetings on the last 
Thursday of each month; 
and the stake and local offi- 

^j B^ cers' meetings were convened 

the first Saturday of every 

M K month. In March, 1901, the 

stake comprised fourteen lo- 

' cal associations with about 

624 members, 94 of whom 
were officers. Two visits 
were made to most of the 
associations during the year 
1901. At these visits the of- 
ficers received much joy in 
mingling with those whom 
to know is to love. The les- 
son that some have learned, 
in their association work, is 
that to give the best they have 
to the work will bring the 
best back to them. September 
16, 1906, a reorganization 
was effected with Lillie M. Fairbanks as president. 

In addition to the ones already named, the following sis- 
ters have acted on the stake board: counselors, Mary J. Dixon 
Hickman, Ann J. Loveless, Clara Barnett Bean, Clarissa 
Wimmer Huish; secretaries and treasurers Jennie Dixon, 
Lydia Schramm, Clarissa Wimmer, Harriet V. Jones, Ev- 
elyn J. Hawkins, Anna Tanner; aids Elizabeth Gardner, 
Sarah Jane Brockbank, Mary E. Ercanbrack, Alice Price 
Poulson, Kate Okelberry, Nettie Lewis, Elizabeth A. Adams, 
Lydia Soeffner, Anna Tanner, Lucy E. M. Dixon, Ev- 



elyn J. Hawkins, Lelia Moore; chorister Grace Brockbank; 
organist Martha H. Douglas. 

The traveling- library was established in 1903, with 59 
volumes, and frequent additions have 
since been made. The two mining towns 
of Mammoth and Eureka were added 
to this stake in 1905. There are some 
excellent girls living in these far-away 
mining towns situated in the tops of our 
mountains, and there is a good spirit 
manifested in their work and associa- 
tion together. 

It is the aim of the stake board 
ULLIE M. FAIRBANKS, members to visit some ward association 
each week when convenient; and once 

a year the board, as a body, visits each ward and 
holds a special meeting, in the nature of a ward conference 
of M. I. A. work. This was begun in 1903, and the meet- 
ings have proved very effectual and inspiring. 


When, in 1908, it was deemed advisable to separate the 
populous Weber stake into three portions, calling one the 
North Weber, one the Ogden, and one the Weber stake, there 
was given an opportunity for many new people to act in 
public positions, which meant that many able but hitherto 
quiescent individuals were to be set in places where respon- 
sibility would develop the best that was in them. So it was, 
in a measure, with Ogden stake. However, the former pres- 
ident of all Weber stake Y. L. M. I. A., Jennette McKay 
Morrell, was chosen to fill the position of president for this 
new division. She chose Helen Maycock and Florence Gwil- 
liam as her counselors. These three met and selected their 
associate workers, and within a few months the board stood 
as follows: secretary and treasurer Pearl Cragun; librarian 
Etta G. Shupe; assistant librarian Mary Petterson; chorister 
Marian Johnson; organist Weltha Belnap; senior class 
leaders Pearl Jones and Maud West; junior class leaders 
Lydia'Dye and Anna Olsen; preliminary program committee 
Eva Farr and Josephine Seaman. The six last mentioned 

406 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

were also aids, to whom was assigned the special work 
named. The work of the counselors was divided into two 
sections; one, with the class leaders, being" given special 
charge of all the class work in the stake, and the other, with 

the board members 
appointed to each 
particular division , 
having: supervision 
over all the other 
work, such as pre- 
liminary programs 
and music. This 
arrangement , leav- 
ing the president 
free to supervise 
the entire work, 
has proved very 

Ever since the 
organization of the 
stake it has been 
the practice of the 
stake presidency 
and the high coun- 
cil to meet with the 
stake boards of the 
various auxiliary 
associations on 
Tuesday evening of 
each week. About 
thirty minutes are 
taken up in musical 
, exercises, prayer, 


ness pertaining to the stake as a whole, after which the 
different boards adjourn to their departments for their 
own work. The young ladies appreciate the interest and 
support extended to them by the stake authorities, making 
particular mention of the assistance rendered by two of the 
brethren who are specially appointed to aid them. Imme- 
diately before this meeting (at 6:45 p. m.,) the presidency of 



each auxiliary association or quorum meets and takes up 
the time till 7:30 p.m. in preparing- the work for the evening: 
and talking- over details pertaining- to their work. The offi- 
cers in the local associations carry on their work in a similar 

It is the custom for the stake and local officers of the Y. L. 
M. I. A., as well as those of the other auxiliary officers, to 
meet at the same time as the priesthood, once a month. All 
meet in a general assembly 
for opening- exercises, aft- 
erward adjourning to their 
different rooms to consider 
in detail the work of their 
various quorums and as- 
sociations. At this meet- 
ing: every local Y. L. M. I. 
A. is expected to be repre- 
sented, and all have taken 
a pride in making their rec- 
ord attendance very hig-h. 

At the present time there 
are but nine associations, 
one ( Middleton ) having 
been discontinued on ac- 
count of there being- very 
few members; four of the 
local associations are in 
Ogden city. All of the 
associations are in good 
working order. The re- 
port for December 31st, 
1909, shows 375 regular members, in addition to the 12 stake 
board members. It shows also that the local associations 
have been visited by two or more members of the stake board 
215 times during- the year, making something over an averag-e 
of four associations visited each week. 

At one of the weekly meetings held with the general 
stake officers, on April 13th, 1909, President Jennette M. 
Morrell was released from her intelligent and hig:hly appre- 
ciated labors, and Helen Maycock was sustained to succeed 
her. Sister Maycock chose Florence Gwilliam and Pearl 


408 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Jones as her counselors, the other officers remaining the same, 
except that from time to time the work has been re-assigned to 
the various workers as some have been necessarily released. 
Since the date mentioned, Pearl Cragun was released as sec 
retary and was succeeded by Florence Montgomery; Sister 
Cragun was retained as an aid and Josephine Munk and Let- 
tie Taylor were added. Quite recently Marian Johnson 
became second counselor, Miss Gwilliam having left the stake. 

As might be expected, the class of work done in this 
stake has been of the most up-to-date kind, and the subjects 
used in their summer courses prove their alertness to exist- 
ing conditions and their quickness of mental assimilation. 
The Weber and the Ogden stake boards of both wings of the 
Mutuals combined in this summer course for 1909. Their 
plans were adapted to the use of Stoddard's Lectures, as 
much as possible, and the lectures included talks on "Pic- 
turesque Japan," under the sub-divisions of "Natural and 
Artificial Beauty Water- Life Festivals" with "Glimpses of 
Unfamiliar Japan" by Lafcadio Hearn. Homer's Odyssey 
was associated with Gayley's Classic Myths. Norway was 
studied in its relation to its fisheries winter sports and 
as the "Land of the Midnight Sun." Egypt, South Africa, 
Mexico and India were all taken up topically, while one 
evening was devoted to a discussion of art, with Raphael as 
the supreme disciple and its best human expression. Other 
topics were of today, including" Sayings of Great Men," and 
the "World's Famous Orations." The music interspersed 
was designed to harmonize with the programs. 

Probably no other chorister has made a more determined 
and successful effort than has Marian Johnson to elevate the 
standard of music; and in it she has been well backed by the 
other board members. Lectures on music and musicians 
formed a lecture course in the preliminary programs, for all 
the associations, and were illustrated with selections from 
the masters whose works were there expounded, the officers 
not being slow to avail themselves of the splendid musical 
talent in their midst. 

For the summer of 1910 the stake will join with Weber 
and North Weber in a course of physical culture and voice 
training for the girls of the city wards, with a special lecture 
course outlined by the stake board for the country wards. 


Thus it will be seen that Ogden stake is well to the front in 
all branches of endeavor. 


This stake, once a part of Cache stake, was organized in 
February, 1884, but the stake board of Young- Ladies' 
Mutual Improvement Association was not effected till Febru- 
ary, 1886, when Esther C. Parkinson was chosen as pres- 
ident, and Ruth A. Hatch and Mary A. Bowen, coiinselors. 
The latter named counselor acted only until July, 1886, when 
Mrs. Luella Squires succeeded her and remained in office 
until January, 1888. From 1892 to 1894, the following offi- 
cers constituted the stake board: Esther Parkinson, pres- 
ident; Susie G. Purnell and Laura L. Johnson, counselors; 
Louie Dowdle, secretary; Nellie N. Parkinson, corresponding 
secretary. Many changes were made in the offices of the 
stake, and there was difficulty in obtaining a complete and 
active board. Although controlled by adverse circumstances, 
the sisters were zealous, laboring then, as they labor now, 
under difficulties. 

No special line of work was laid out prior to the printing 
of the Guides, programs at meetings being promiscuous in 
all the wards and carried out only to the best judgment of 
the local officers. Meetings of the stake and local officers 
were held monthly, and quarterly conferences were held, at 
which reports from ward associations were received and con- 
sidered. A feature of these conferences consisted of a man- 
uscript paper, composed of the best literary talent of the 
members of the stake. 

The girls had a unique way of raising funds. In early days, 
bazaars had not begun, nor were fancy balls to be considered 
as a means to this end; brt the ingenuity of the young ladies 
devised the plan of going in crowds to the canyons, where wild 
hops grew in great profusion. These hops were picked, 
midst laughter and song, picnic and frolic, and sold, almost 
at retail price, to the merchants of the towns. Thus ready 
money was accumulated with which to purchase books, sta- 
tionery and other things necessary to carry on the work. 

In 1892, Sister Parkinson was called to work in the Logan 
Temple, which necessitated her release from the presidency, 


this taking place April 22, 1894, whereupon Nellie Greaves 
(Spidell) was appointed to preside, with Amy Chadwick 
(Baliff) and Elise Benson (Alder) as her counselors. The 
following- officers were also chosen and sustained: Louie 
Dowdle, secretary, and Bessie Doney, corresponding- 

Soon after the reorganization, President Greaves, her 
counselors and secretary, and Sarah Eddington of the General 


Board, made a tour of the stake, inconsequence of which the 
Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement work received a great 
impetus, the impression made upon the girls by the modest 
manner and inspiring words of Miss Eddington being such as 
to live forever in their hearts. About this time the Guide 
was received. It was regarded, from its signal success, as 
the key-note to good Mutual Improvement work. Weekly 
officers' meetings were held by both ward and stake officers, 
at which these lessons were fully discussed, much to the profit 
and pleasure of the participants; they were also considered 


at the regular monthly meeting's where stake and local officers 
met together. 

In 1897 the stake board was again reorganized with 
Almeda G. Nelson as president; Martha L. Hickman and 
Nellie Head, counselors; Amy Chadwick, secretary; Agnes 
Dalley, corresponding secretary; Sarah J. Clayton, treasurer; 
Bertha Parkinson, recording secretary. 

District conferences were held quarterly in the various 
wards. August, 1897, an important journey was made through 
the stake by the board officers, accompanied by Susa Young 
Gates, to dispose of bound volumes of the Journal. Much good 
resulted from this visit to the Oneida stake, and everywhere 
the work and presence of the sisters were deemed a blessing. 
In one ward, where the officers of the local board were timid 
about assuming the responsibility of paying for the Journals, 
Sister Gates promised them, in the name of the Lord, that if 
they would take the Journals and do their full duty, at the end 
of the year they would be far better off financially than they 
were then. In fulfillment of this prediction, the Journals were 
paid for during that year; missionaries were helped to the 
extent of $25, and the association was remarkably successful 
in carrying out the Guide work. 

In 1901, there were only fifteen ward associations in the 
stake, as two stakes, Pocatello and the new Bannock, had been 
formed from parts of Oneida; still the work prospered , all the 
associations being fully organized and in a fair condition. 
Now there are nineteen associations, with a regular mem- 
bership of 544 and 16 stake officers. The stake has a travel- 
ing library of only 62 volumes; but the books in the local 
libraries number 572. 

In addition to the officers already named, the following 
have acted on the board: presidents Luella S. Cowley (ap- 
pointed September 17, 1905) and Mary A. Nelson (June 19, 
1910); counselors Roxy Nelson, Gertrude Griffiths, Nellie 
E. Thomas, Anna M. Frost, Barbara Baliff; secretaries and 
treasurers Delia Maughan (Chadwick), Gertrude Griffith, 
Edna Johnson and Dora Merrill; aids Sara Schuldberg, 
Mary Thomas, Eliza S. Porter, Maria Allen, Margaret Ged- 
des, Eliza Stevenson, Margaret G. Stevens, Pearl C. Eames, 
Cecil Winward, Ada L. Hart, Elizabeth Eames, Millie Lowe, 
Ida Parkinson, Ellen C. Henderson, Lizzie Thomas, Dora 



Merrill, Edna Geddes, Sybil Smith, Edith Redd, Iretta Peters, 
Eleanor Jensen, Lillie Eames Benson, Edna Johnson Merrill, 
Lena Allen Parkinson and Eleanor Jensen; choristers and 
organists Lucy H. Cutler, Eleanor Thomas, Olive N. Ged- 
des, Georgia Dalley, Fenretta T. Mechan and Edna Geddes; 
librarian Delia M. Chad wick. 


This stake is situated in the "tops of the mountains" 
and is isolated from railroads and all modern traveling in- 
fluences; not one settlement is on the direct road to any oth- 
er or is in any of the populous sections of the state; each 
town is its own goal, and few of them are on "the road to 
anywhere;" so that the girls living- under these constant pi- 
oneer and more or less difficult conditions, would be expected 

to develop fine traits of charac- 
ter, strength of body, and 
clearness of intellect. This is 
surely true of these hardy, 
fearless mountain girls. They 
have developed, with the vigor 
of body natural to such condi- 
tions, a corresponding virility 
of spirit, which gives them an 
invincible power of right-doing 
and right-thinking. The town 
of Panguitch is some twenty 
miles from the lovely lake 
called Panguitch. This high 
mountain retreat is visited in 
the summer by many pilgrims 
from the lower counties, for the 
beauty and healthfulness of 
Panguitch Lake valley is well 
known to all Dixie and South- 

MARY H. HEYWOOD. ' ern Utah dwellers . ''The sim- 
ple life is easy to the happy 
and fortunate girls in Panguitch stake. 

The stake board of the Y. L. M. I. A. was organized 
by the priesthood presidency of the stake, on June 5th, 1879. 
The president was Mary H. Hey wood (Sevy), with Annie Dav- 


is and Martha Ella Church as counselors; and Mary A. Mar- 
shall as secretary. Since then, there have been numerous 
changes in the board, but all have labored well and faithfully 
when they were in position. 

The following- sisters have since acted upon the board: 
presidents Jane LeFevre, (appointed Aug. 27, 1898); Maria 
Houston, (Nov. 30, 1902); Elizabeth D. Hatch, (Sept. 3, 
1906); Elizabeth S. Worthen, (Nov. 21, 1909); counselors- 
Margaret Clark, Sarah Houston, Kate D. Hey wood, Mary 
Foy Dodds, Serepta Sevy (Shepherd), Maria Worthen, Alice 
Webb Clark, Catherine Steele Riding, Mattie DeLong, Hil- 
da V. Prince and Mamie F. Dodds; secretaries and treasur- 
ers Mattie Heywood (DeLong), Mary Foy, Josephine 
Barney, Mattie Hancock, Rena Sargent, Nina Houston and 
Hilda P. Henrie; aids Allie W. Clark, Thursa Riding, 
Thella Church, Mabel Excell, Catherine S. Riding, Chastie 
Losse, Ella P. Cameron. 

The wards of the stake are as follows: Panguitch, 
Hatch, Tropic, Cannon ville, Hillsdale, Henrie ville, Escal- 
ante, Marion, Kingston, Junction and Circleville. These 
wards are located at considerable distances from each other 
and from Panguitch, so that the officers are not able to visit 
them more than once or twice yearly. The extent of the 
stake includes all the settlements in Garfield county, and 
Kingston, Circleville, and Junction, in Piute county. Marys- 
vale in the latter county was also included in the Panguitch 
stake, but it has since been joined to Sevier stake. 

For a long time the stake board had no funds with 
which to pay their few but necessary expenses; they were ob- 
liged to pay all costs from their own slender purses. But in 
1896, a fund was started, by deducting 25 per cent from the 
general dime fund, and later by the establishment of a local 
nickel fund. This has proved sufficient for ordinary 
expenses. From a beginning of two subscribers to the 
Young Woman's Journal, they have now gained the proud 
distinction of being one of the banner stakes in the matter of 
subscribers to that magazine. 

The girls of this stake are in full sympathy and fellow- 
ship with every movement made by the General Board and 
their associate friends and members in all the wards and 
stakes of Zion. 




Parowan stake is one of the chain of stakes lying in the 
old line of travel from Salt Lake City to the Dixie country, 
and as such was the center of much old-time activity and 
genuine progress. With the swinging of railroad travel to 
the far west of this stake, the towns became more or less 
isolated, and what progress was made was necessarily of an 

individual, not community or 
commercial, nature. But with 
these so-called disadvantages, 
the excellent people of this 
stake have gone steadily on- 
ward, sending their sons and 
daughters northward toPro vo , 
to Salt Lake and then later 
to Beaver, for scholastic ad- 
vantages above the common 
schools of their own towns, 
until the Branch Normal of 
the University of Utah was 
established in their own Cedar 
City. These children have 
many of them 'made names 
and fortunes for themselves. 
It was here that President 
George A. Smith established 
a home, and infused into his 
wide sphere of influence the 
same sturdy and faithful de- 
votion to righteousness which 
characterized this great and 

good man. Much of the country is sterile, but chiefly be- 
cause of lack of water. The soil here begins to show the 
red sandy traces of the Dixie formation. 

From the data obtainable, the stake board of the Y. L. 
M. I. A., was organized Sept. 4, 1881, withHuldaA. Mitch- 
ell as president; Deana Smith and Henrietta Jones, coun- 
selors; C. Adella Mortensen, secretary. The membership of 
the stake at this time was 161. At the December conference 
of 1885, Deana Smith was sustained as president, with Mary 
L. Orton and Mary Alice Jones as counselors: and C. Adella 




Mickelson, secretary. The membership was then 185. Tura 
Smith was appointed president in 1893, with Joyce Palmer 
and E. Crane Watson as her counselors, and Sadie Meeks 
secretary; the membership was returned at 227, showing a 
decided advancement in point of numbers. In October, 1895, 
Annie M. Dalley was called to preside, assisted by Counselors 
Julia M. Lyman and May M. Higbee; Nora Hulet holding 
the double office of secretary and treasurer. 

The death of Annie M. Dalley, who was the president 
of the stake board from 1895 to 1904, a very efficient officer 
and dearly loved, cast a gloom over the whole community. 
In August, 1904, when President Dalley was making her 
tour of the stake, she reached Harmony, 
and was taken violently ill; she was 
removed to Cedar City, and here every 
care and attention was given her, but 
she died on the 29th of August, 1904. 
She was mourned by all the stake, and 
left behind her a host of friends and 
admirers. She died doing her duty, 
and that has given every girl in the 
stake a higher ideal of endeavor, a purer 
standard of duty and loving devotion. 
She did not live nor die in vain! 

On September 26th, 1904, Sarah A. 
Bullock's name was presented before 
the general stake conference and unan- 
imously sustained as president of the Y. L. M. I. A. of 
Parowan stake. She chose as her counselors Henrietta 
Jones and May M. Higbee; as secretary, Priscilla Urie( Leigh); 
as treasurer and assistant secretary, Ada Bryant (Leigh); as 
aids, Betsy Topham, Barbara Matheson, Samantha Berry, 
Norah Hulet Madsen and Nellie Pace; as librarian, Barbara 
Tweedie; and as organist, Mayme Parry. 

The following sisters have acted upon the stake board 
in addition to the ones already named: counselors Lillian 
White, Ordena Dalley, Belle Perry and Kate Palmer; aids- 
Lena Jones, Florence Webster, Emily Crane Watson, Maggie 
Edwards, Barbara Adams, Melissa Hammond; chorister 
Violet Urie. 

A report from the stake gives the following: "The 


416 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

greatest perceptible progression in the work in all the time 
to this date was the course mapped out in the Guide; but the 
happiest and most advanced results have been achieved since 
the printing of the Guide work in the Young Woman's Journal. 
Our membership is about 350 and the real importance of the 
work is beginning to be realized. We are now considering 
the matter of calling missionaries from one ward to another, 
that they may encourage each other to be up with their les- 
sons, at the same time qualifying the girl-missionary for 
greater responsibility. " 

The officers and members of this stake are united heart 
and soul in their noble work, happy in the spirit of their 
calling, and constantly reaching out for further light and 
extended knowledge, that they may do their whole duty in 
teaching the beautiful plan of salvation to the precious 
daughters of Zion. 


The Pioneer stake was organized March 24th, 1904, in 
the Salt Lake Assembly Hall, the first conference of the stake 
being held on May 1st, 1904, when the priesthood of the 
stake and the auxiliary organizations were placed before the 
people, and were unanimously sustained. At this time Miss 
Sarah H. Heath, formerly of the Salt Lake stake board, was 
chosen president of the Y. L. M. I. A., with Edith A. Smith 
and Edith E. Sampson as her counselors. Lydia A. Weiler 
and Rose Bowers were selected as secretaries, Mabel Cooper 
as chorister, and Ethel Rich Carlquist, Jane Bixton Bowers 
and Millie Walker as aids. These sisters have practically 
remained in office since that time, with a few changes. But 
the capable and dauntless president still guides the Mutual 
ship Zion through many rough and tumbled waters of up- 
rising and difficulty, and her cheery young voice can be heard 
above any ordinary storm of trouble, calling on her girls to 
row lively and follow in their brisk leader's wake, while even 
the young men are not forgotten or allowed to lag behind in 
this onward voyage. 

This stake has a record for united labors in the two 
wings of the Mutuals. Their very first meeting as officers 
was held conjointly, and this admirable practice, with its 


accompanying atmosphere of unity and amity, has clung: 
faithfully to this band of workers of both sexes. They have 
projected many elaborate social functions, great summer 
excursions, and winter entertainments; but always they work 
tog-ether, sharing: the labors and dividing- the benefits with 
commendable zeal and unselfishness. 

Pioneer stake was cut off from Salt Lake stake, embrac- 
ing- the south-west portion of the city proper; the Fourth, 


Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Twenty-fifth, Twenty-sixth, Thirtieth, 
Thirty-second, Brighton, Pleasant Green, Cannon and 
Poplar Grove wards comprise the stake. The name itself is 
taken from the fact of the Pioneer Square being- located in 
its confines. It was here the nucleus of the city was estab- 
lished when the Pioneers camped at this memorable spot in 
1847, and from here has radiated all the civilization which 
has filled these valleys with homes and covered the land with 

The enrollment of the stake is very close to being all of 
the girls in the stake. Much of this is due to the thorough 


418 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

work done by the stake presidency of the girls in working 
personally and with a host of assisting missionaries during 
the summer and fall months, visiting the homes, writing 
personal letters to each girl in the stake, and in some in- 
stances, visiting even the mothers to enlist them in the good 
cause. Not a girl is allowed to feel herself overlooked or for- 
g-otten in the stake; if she does not attend her meetings, the 
reason is inquired into, and she is sought after diligently. 

Since the organization of the stake, Sisters Leolia Tom- 
linson, Florence Groesbeck Cannon and Emily C. Cottrell 
have been added as aids, and Eva Richardson was sustained 
as organist. Elizabeth Cannon Giauque was made stake sec- 
retary in place of Lydia Weiler Brazier who was released 
in 1909. 


This stake is located in the southern part of Idaho, and 
joins the Oneida and Malad stakes on the south, the Black- 
foot stake on the north, and Bannock stake on the east. The 
country is rich in natural resources. A railroad center, it is 
composed of a very mixed community, the principal city, 
Pocatello, being a wealthy town, with many classes and sects 
as its inhabitants. The Latter-day Saints living there are 
scattered, but most of them are loyal and devoted to their 

The Y. L. M. I. A. of the Pocatello stake was organized 
August 7th, 1898, by Elders Heber J. Grant and Mathias F. 
Cowley, of the quorum of the Twelve, and President George 
C. Parkinson of Oneida stake. It was composed of six wards 
taken from the Oneida stake and two from the Malad. The 
number has now increased to fifteen. The stake officers ap- 
pointed for the Young Ladies' were: president Louie K. 
Pond; counselors Tilda H. Williams and Emma Spillman 
(Jacobsen); secretary E. Helen Oram; treasurer and assist- 
ant secretary Edith Ella Harrison. 

An event of some importance to this stake was the visit of 
Sister Cornelia Home Clayton, eleven years ago. Sister Clay- 
ton came in the interests of the /ournatbut was given directions 
to instruct and encourage the girls everywhere. She made a 
trip around the stake in company with President Louie K. 
Pond and the results were most encouraging and satisfactory. 



The weekly stake officers' meetings are devoted to study 
of Guide lessons, except that of the first one in the month, 
and this is given over to testimonies, for the officers have 
always felt the need for this spiritual strength in their diffi- 
cult work. In 1899, each ward gave an entertainment for 
library purposes; and in 1901, a ball was given by the stake 
for the Woman's Building, realizing $35.00 from the affair. 

June 23, 1907, President 
Pond was released on account 
of removing to Nampa, and 
Edith R. Lovesy who for 
some time had been stake 
secretary, succeeded her as 
president, the same coun- 
selors, Tilda H. Williams and 
Rebecca Douglas, being re- 
tained, with Edith Harrison 
as secretary. Owing to her 
removal to Salt Lake City, 
Sister Lovesy tendered her 
resignation in February, 1908. 
A reorganization took place 
June 28, 1908, when Addie 
H. Hendricks was made pres- 
ident with Rebecca Douglas 
and Mary Merrill as coun- 

In addition to the sisters 
already named, the following 
have acted upon the stake 
board in various capacities: Mamie Henderson Allen, Louisa 
Jones, Lila Howard, Ida Houtz, Lydia Morley, Ethel K. 
Williams, Jessie Bean, Florence Bennion, Fanny Stinger, 
Ellen Hamer, Mary Evans, Margaret Brim, Elizabeth Rooker, 
Susa Nielson, Cassie H. Wood, Nellie Hanson, Ellen Mae 
Davidson, Laura Berg, Linda A. Hillhouse, Ethel Williams, 
Marintha Allen. 

This board instituted a very effective way of reaching 
the eligible girls in their stake: missionaries are appointed, 
who visit each girl in the several districts, and after some 
pleasant conversations, they invite the girls to attend the 

420 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

associations. Three sets of missionaries have been called to 
this labor; they are, E.Helen Oram, Emma Olive, IdaHoutz, 
Frances Pitts, Lizzie Riley, Margaret Olive and Irene Neeley. 
Their duties are merely temporary, for they are released when 
they have covered their districts. Much good has resulted 
from this work, and in addition to awakening an interest 
among members, at least three converts to the Church have 
been made. 

An interesting incident occurred in Pocatello in Septem- 
ber, 1904; the stake board of the Y. L. M. I. A. undertook, 
in connection with the Relief Society board, to hold a Union 
Peace meeting, in which ministers of every denomination in 
the city as well as a few prominent lawyers and business 
men and the principals of the schools were invited to take 
part. All the ministers accepted but one gentleman, who 
was so shocked at the prospect of jcining hands with "Mor- 
mons," even if they were inoffensive women, that he visited 
each of the other ministers and succeeded in persuading all 
to send in polite regrets. The ministers felt that they could 
not afford to have even the appearance of affiliating with the 
"Mormon" Church, in view of the then prevalent "Smoot 
agitation." The principals of the various schools, the lawyers 
and business men were not so timid; they boldly accepted the 
invitation to appear upon the stand with these gentle pleaders 
for peace. The meeting was largely attended, and was voted 
a great success by all present. 

The girls in this stake are proud of the fact that their 
records are acknowledged by the stake priesthood to be the 
very best in the stake. They hold conjoint conferences on 
the Sunday evening of the stake conferences, and are invited 
to meet with the stake presidency just prior to their meeting, 
where they may report whatever of interest or need they may 
have to present. Monthly conjoint stake officers' meetings 
are also a pleasing feature of their work. 

The report of the stake secretary dwells with earnestness 
upon the spiritual side of the work done, and wishes it re- 
membered that if there are no striking results shown, still 
they feel the constant benefits in the results of their faithful 
spiritual effort. Another praiseworthy item relates to the 
tithing record of the girls in Pocatello stake; the reports 


show them to be faithful and careful in the payment of their 
tithes and offerings. Many of the girls are wage-earners, 
and this fact it is which enables them to make this excellent 
showing. This stake is doing well in all matters of Mutual 
Improvement. Mrs. Pond, during the nine years of her 
presidency, placed the work on an excellent foundation, 
leaving it fully abreast of other stakes when she left it. 
During the incumbency of Edith R. Lovesy as stake pres- 
ident a book social was given, and fifty books were there 
contributed to the stake traveling library by the generous 
guests; all books were of the best character, and were ap- 
proved by the General Board. Another excellent point of im- 
provement was the institution of printed monthly reports, 
which the stake secretary sends out each month to the wards; 
these bring the local work constantly before the stake board 
with the status of each association. Mrs. Lovesy was greatly 
loved in this stake, and on her departure, with her husband, 
who was equally popular as the superintendent of the Young* 
Men's work, the two were given a reception to which prac- 
tically every Church member in that locality turned out to 
wish God-speed to the young couple who had worked so hard 
for both wings of the Mutual in this northern stake. 

The work is now in competent hands and Sister Hen- 
dricks has proven her value in her new positions. There are 
many obstacles to meet in this stake, but there is no lack of 
effort nor purpose on the part of those engaged in the work. 


Only two years ago this stake was a part of the Bingham 
stake of Zion. It lies north and east in that section of coun- 
try between Bingham and Fremont, and consists of a num- 
ber of thriving towns in the rich section of lands watered by 
the famous Snake river. It was on February 4th, 1908, that 
the stake was organized, the Y. L. M. I. A. being formed at 
the same time. 

The girls here have taken up the regular work outlined 

422 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

by the General Board and have been very successful in their 

efforts. For the summer's work they combined with the 

youngr men and grave literary and 

historical prog-rams at their conjoint 

sessions, with the usual musical 


The following- sisters have acted 
on the board: president Cora 
Chandler Burton; counselors Mabel 
Stromberg-, Elizabeth Walker Harker 
and Mae Earns; secretaries and 
treasurers Ethel M. Call, Elizabeth 
Gilchrist, Mabel Hunter, Leila Mar- CORA c. BURTON. 

ler Hog-gran, Susie Yearsley and Al- 
berta Beazer; librarian Sarah E. Selck; organist Leona 
Ossmen; assistant organist Hattie Dabelle; aids -Nora 
Moss, Alta, Watson, Elizabeth Hart. 


The organization of this stake was antedated, as were 
many others, by numerous ward associations, that in the 
town of St. George being: the first. On Nov. 18, 1875, the 
young ladies of the town met in the St. George tabernacle 
and were organized into the St.- George Young Ladies' Mutual 
Improvement Association, with eighty-one names enrolled as 
members. The officers of this early association were: Arte- 
mesia Snow Woolley, general director or superintendent, 
Elizabeth A. Snow, president, and Eliza Crosby Snow, Eliza- 
beth Starr, Hannah Faucett, and Amelia Crosby as the four 
counselors. The secretary's name is not given. This ini- 
tial organization was quickly followed by others, in Sants 
Clara, Pine Valley, Pinto, Rockville, Virgin, Toquerville 
and Panaca, in the order named. These young officers 
planned their own work and contrived to spend their time 
and efforts in a most profitable manner. We are told that 
they held weekly meetings, quilts were made, carpet-rags 
sewed, and all kinds of primitive fancy-work were taugrht and 
encouraged. While the other members were busy with their 
fingers, one girl would read from an interesting book, and 



thus all were mentally benefited. Some of the articles made 
were sold, thus providing" means for the purchase of books 
and other necessary expenses. At the program meetings, 
the usual study of the Scriptures, interspersed with readings 
and music, formed the exercises. The lady who acted as first 
"superintendent," an office unique in itself and yet sugges- 
tive of the future, Artemesia Snow Woolley,now Seegmiller, 

was the eldest daughter of 
Apostle Erastus Snow, and 
was greatly beloved all over 
Dixie, for her deeply spiritu- 
al nature and her many gifts. 
Her sister, Elizabeth Snow, 
now Ivins, who became the 
first stake president, was also 
very popular, and was a girl 
of most exemplary character, 
with a charming if reserved 
personality. Her other youth- 
ful counselors were chosen 
from the very best of St. 
George's young women. The 
country in the southern part 
of this state known as "Dix- 
ie" (because of the physical 
resemblance to that other 
"Dixie") was established by 
as remarkable a colony of 
pioneers as ever settled any 
Mormon region. It was com- 
monly known that President Young took a good share of the 
"cream' ' of Salt Lake City when he named those who were to 
undertake the settlement of this far-away and difficult mission. 
A country of sand, and black rocks, sparsely watered with 
brackish springs, did not present an attractive appearance to 
those early heroes and heroines. But duty spelled a big 
part of their lives, and, more than all, they were led by 
Apostle Erastus Snow, a pioneer and statesman, who, in his 
infinite capacity for detail and government, was second only 
to that master pioneer, Brigham Young. Erastus Snow was 
one of the mightiest men this earth has ever seen. When he 




was accompaniedlby .such men as Jacob Gates, Joseph W. 
Young-, James G. Bleak and the three Woolley brothers, it is 
not to be wondered at that the country fulfilled the striking 
prediction of President Young. ^ When told by some objector 
that the people ofDixie would never raise successful "crops," 
Brig-ham Young said, ' 'Well, they will raise men and women 
there." The men and women, all over the country, who ac- 
knowledge Dixie as their birthplace, occupy sufficient prom- 
inence in the affairs of whatever section they inhabit to verify 

that statement. The society 
in St. George was, therefore, 
of the best and most progress- 
ive, so that advancement was 
natural and inevitable. 

The stake organization 
of the Y. L. M. I. A. was 
effected July 7th, 1877, by 
Elder Junius F. Wells. Eliz- 
abeth Snow Ivins was chos- 
en president, with Mary 
Goddard Whitehead and Ar- 
temesia Snow Woolley Seeg- 
miller as her counselors. El- 
la Smith Seegmiller was 
elected secretary. These sis- 
ters served, most of them, 
for ten years, doing excel- 
lent work and winning many 
friends for the cause of Mu- 


tual Improvement. On March 
16, 1889, the board was reor- 
ganied. with Rosina S. Jarvis as president: Jos ephme Ja 
vis (Miles) and Tena Iverson, counselors; Belle McArthur 
ircretary From time to time, in addition to the ones named 
elsewhere, the following have acted in the capacities noted: 
counselors-Josephine Snow, Martha Snow (Keate), Edil 
S Eva Cannon, Lottie Ashby Forsha Mary Thompson 
(Webb); secretaries-June Ivins McDonald , Rosma S. Jar- 
vis Belle McArthur, Mary Nixon, Louie Woolley (Wells), 
lei Nelso* T May Keate^ (Pace); aids-Mary Thompson 
(Webb) Rosa Rancher (Nelson), Caddie MacFarlane (An- 


drus), Eva Price, Annie McAllister Whipple, Mary Morris 
Williams, Lydia Knell, Vilate C. Naegle, Hattie Thornton 
Snow, Emma Cottam, Maud Rosamond Snow, Effie Soren- 

September 8, 1907, another reorganization took place 
and the following were sustained: president Eva Cannon 
(Webb); counselors Maud R. Snow, Jennie Nixon; secre- 
tary and treasurer Lena Nelson; assistant secretary and 
treasurer Mattie McArthur. Since that time the following 
have been added: chorister and organist Nettie MacFarlane; 
librarian Jennie Nelson; aids Ann Ronnon, Bertie Crosby 
(Bunker), Emma McArthur, Lydia Knell, and Vilate 
Naegle. On June 19, 1910, Counselor Jennie Nixon (Fos- 
ter) was released and Templena MacFarlane sustained as 
second counselor. 

There are quarterly conjoint conferences held at the 
time of the stake conference, with four conjoint officers' meet- 
ings. The officers of the Young Ladies hold one general 
conference, with three district conferences a year. They en- 
deavor to visit each ward once yearly and a faint idea of the 
labor thus involved may be gained from the statement that 
they travel 1030 miles by team to accomplish this round of 
visits, while it requires 34 days to make the journey. When 
the stake was first organized, there were twelve associations 
with 332 members. The stake was then enclosed in the 
county of Washington, Utah; but it has since been enlarged 
and reaches over into White Pine and Lincoln counties, 
Nevada. At present writing, there are twenty-three associ- 
ations, with a little over 700 members. 

There is a somewhat old-fashioned but very vigorous 
atmosphere surrounding the work of these sunny distant 
branches of the Mutual. The all-pervading presence of the 
aggressive president of the Young Men's organization is rec- 
ognized in all the country round about: but there is so much 
sweetness and light emanating from the young lady officers of 
the stake that the strength of the one is gently modified by 
the courtesy of the other. The fortunate visiting official who 
has attended one of the famous ' 'Dixie" M. I. A. fruit fe; 
tivals in the fall of the year will preserve a vivid memory 01 
yellow globes of peaches, mammoth bunches of white and 
black grapes, purple figs and pale almonds, set off with 



luscious bulks of ripe, sugar-sweet melons, carried one 
hundred miles by ambitious M. I. boys for this especial 
feast. That picture will linger in the memory as long- as the 
palate can taste, or the eye appreciate the beauties of per- 
fect fruit. And when the merry feast is but a half forgotten 
pleasant memory, there will rise that stronger, deeper im- 
age of the blistering sands and gleaming black rocks which 
have produced a crop of as splendid men and women as have 
been grown in the vales of all Utah. 


There have been pioneers and pioneers in the history of 
this Church; but only those who dwelt in the "Dixie" coun- 
try in Utah, and in the still 
harder country of St. John's 
stake in Arizona, can tell 
what a constant and unremit- 
ting struggle it is to be al- 
ways under pioneer condi- 
tions. The people who went 
to St. John's stake were of 
the very best quality, in the 
first place; and they who 
have stayed on, are of the 
bravest and noblest of men 
and women. The stake is 
situated high up in the moun- 
tains, where roads are diffi- 
cult and travel rare; then, the 
water, their only hope, is 
liable to break out from the 
reservoirs at any moment, 
and go rushing down to the 
Pacific. And this thing does 
IDA HUNT UDALL. actually happen; not once, or 

twice, but so often that the 

presiding brethren have released the people who were 
called to settle this section of country, and encouraged them 
to seek homes in an easier climate. But, alas, when a man 
has his all tied up on one small farm, and that farm located 
in a country from which all desire to get away, then, indeed, 


is his lot a hard one. Such is the outward condition of 
things at St. John's stake. 

But, as might be expected, the inner or spiritual condi- 
tions of the people here are as promising: and fine as their 
temporal affairs are forbidding and barren. The following 
details of their work will prove this: 

The Eastern Arizona Stake 

was the name formerly given to what is now the Snowflake 
and St. John's stakes. The first president of the Y. L. M. 
I. A. of the Eastern Arizona stake was Ida Hunt, who was 
chosen at the organization, July 26, 1879. Her counselors 
were afterward chosen in the persons of Nellie M. Smith and 
Emma Larson; Nannie Freeman became secretary and treas- 
urer. Later Miss Hunt removed to Salt Lake City, which 
necessitated her resignation as president. Accordingly she 
was released, and at a quarterly conference held at Snowflake 
in March, 1886, Mary E. Freeman was sustained as presi- 
dent with Adelaide Fish and Mary E. B. Farr as counselors. 
In this capacity these three sisters labored faithfully until 
the division of the stake into the Snowflake and the St. 
John's stakes, which took place July 2, 1887. 

St. fohns Stake. 

At the organization of the Y. L. M. I. A. of the St. 
John's stake, July 23d, 1887, Mary E. Freeman was sus- 
tained as president; Charlotte Sherwood and Clara A. 
Moore, counselors; Emma J. Udall, secretary. At this time 
there were seven local associations; in 1900 another was or- 
ganized in Bluewater. This stake was visited in 1902 by 
Sister Julia M. Brixen, who urged the sisters to make effort 
to send a representative to the June conference at Salt Lake 
City. The seriousness of this may be realized when it is 
known that it takes a very large sum to cover the expenses 
of one delegate. It was by heroic effort that the girls ar- 
ranged in the various wards of the stake to get up a series of 
entertainments, of sufficient financial magnitude to reach this 
sum. But they succeeded, and the delegate was their honored 
president, Mrs. Freeman. They were not sorry for their 



effort, for when she returned from the June conference of 
1902, she was so full of joy and enthusiasm, and had ac- 
quired so much valuable information that every vein and ar 
tery of their "body mutual" received renewed life and vigo 
from this visit. She made a 
complete tour, by team, of 
the entire stake, soon after 
her return, and to each in 
turn she gave the comfort, 
blessing-, and inspiration she 
herself had received in 

In the spring of 1905, 
nearly all the reservoirs in 
the stake were washed out, 
and the people were almost 
in despair. Many of those 
who could leave did so, and 
this left the stake sadly crip- 
pled. The First Presidency 
sent a letter at this time re- 
leasing the people, and giv- 
ing their blessing to those 
who went away and to those 
who stayed. Many went, and 
there were in consequence 
many sore hearts and sad 
parting's; but all were comforted with the assurance that 
each had done full duty. 

In the fall of 1905, Mrs. Freeman moved away with her 
husband, who had been a very heavy loser in the reservoirs. 
They felt it impossible to make a new start under the cir- 
cumstances. This caused the resignation of President Free- 
man, and great was the sorrow of the girls in the whole stake. 
She had given them her love, her hope and her untiring labor; 
in return, they had sought to emulate her gracious example. 
Now she was to leave them they felt sadly the richness 
and worth of her legacy. November 19, 1905, Amelia Cole- 
man succeeded President Freeman. She had labored many 
years in this stake, beginning as the counselor of Sister Free- 



man. A few months before she was called as a counselor, 
Sister Coleman's husband was killed by lightning, and two 
years later her eldest daughter died; the shock was so great 
that she could with difficulty go on with her duties. However, 
her subsequent labors proved the truth of the promise made to 
her by the authority which called her to this work. She has 
been blessed beyond measure and proved herself to be a 
wise counselor and a worthy successor. Owing to her re- 
moval from the stake, a reorganization took place Novem- 
ber 17, 1907, with Margaret J. Overson as' president, who 
with her present corps of officers is carrying the work along, 
steadily and faithfully. 

In addition to the sisters already named the following 
have acted upon the St. John's stake board in various ca- 
pacities: Sarah F. Hey wood, Mary W. Berry, Lydia P. Jen- 
sen, Naomi Freeman, Signe A. Davis, Sylvia Petersen, Lil- 
lian S. Overson, Pearl Udall, Erma U. Sherwood, Louie 
Brown, Amanda Kempe, Minnie Bilby, Waity Crosby, Mar- 
ian Love, Maud Noble, Inez Lee, Mary E. Nielson, Maggie 
Greer, Pearl Nielson, Clara Curtis (Burk), Annie Sorenson, 
Mary H. Beeler, Mary P. Jones, Louie A. Freeman, Mary 
Patterson, Lydia Jensen, Nellie Jarvis, Evelyn Gibbons, 
Jane Brown, and JosieA. Patterson. 

It is the custom for some members of the stake board to 
make a yearly circuit of the local wards, (340 miles,) by 
means of wagon conveyance, the object being to establish a 
uniformity in studies and to advance the work generally. 
The Young Woman's Journal is well patronized and the stake 
board feels that much good results from the influence ex- 
erted by that magazine. The secretaries of^the associations, 
both stake and local, are given special mention for the able 
manner in which they have attended to their duties, all rec- 
ords being in excellent condition. The stake library num- 
bers 68 volumes which are kept in constant circulation, 
Monthly stake officers' meetings are held regularly, as well 
as quarterly meetings with local officers. Meetings of ward 
officers are held weekly. 

In later years the wards have labored on, some of them 
so weak that they cannot hold meetings without joining 
forces with the young men, but there is no diminution of 
faith and earnestness. 

430 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

The hearts of the Saints in more favored localities go 
out to these oppressed and struggling comrades with a con- 
stant love and abiding- prayer. The results of the sacrifices 
made by the Saints of St. John's stake will tell in the final 
results of rich experiences and noble, sanctified characters. 


This stake is one of the most prosperous and thriving 
centers in the Church, agriculturally, morally and spiritually. 
It is situated in the tropical region of Arizona. With suffi- 
cient water to force nature's otherwise reluctant hand, this 
region yields its most abundant harvests. The true story of 
one sweet potato growing to sufficient size to fill a bushel 
basket taxes the faith of those who have never been there; 
but that is only one of the big stories told of this prolific sec- 
tion. There are big-hearted men and women there, led by 
their president, Andrew Kimball, he of the quick imagination 
and tender sympathy. His associates partake of his own 
generous spirit. Every advantage possible in a pioneer com- 
munity is given to education, amusement and commercial 
activity, while in and through it all runs the fine chain of 
pure religion which makes of this people an almost ideal 
community. There is a flourishing Church academy here, 
and it is so excellent in scholastic as well as moral training 
that even those not of the same faith send their children from 
Phoenix to partake of its spirit and culture . 

Several ward organizations were effected in this stake 
prior to its stake organization. The detailed history of this 
is as follows: 

June 15, 1883, the Y. L. M. I. A. of the St. Joseph 
stake was organized, from two ward organizations, with Sarah 
D. Curtis as president; Esther T. Merrill and Rhoda E. 
Foster, counselors; Hulda Hubbard, secretary. 

A reorganization was carried out March 23d, 1888, as 
follows: president Laura Nuttall; counselors Janie Wright 
and Sarah Burns (Webb). The number of the ward or- 
ganizations in the stake had increased in three years from 
two to six associations. 

During the visit of Elders John Henry Smith and John 
W. Taylor of the quorum of the Twelve, a partial reorgani- 
zation was effected, the following board of, officers being 



sustained January 29, 1898: Laura Nuttall, president; Emma 
Walch and Lucinda M. Gustafson, counselors; Mary McBride, 
secretary and treasurer; Sarah Allred, Susie Merrill, Agatha 
Tibbetts and Lillie Curtis, aids. 

In addition to the officers named, the following- have 
acted on the stake board in various capacities: Eva Rogers, 
Lydia Williams, Mary Lines, Annie H. McBride, Jennie 
Cluff, Margaret Brinckerhoff, Emma Rogers, Pamelia 
Ransom, Eva Anderson (Lines), Fanny Ximball, Josephine 



Cluff, Lovina Pace, Eleanor Peterson, Nettie Phillips, Martha 
Crosby, Hattie Williams, Mae Larsen, Maud Callison, Julia 
Curtis, Susie Crockett, Vina Lee, Minnie Bilby, Charlotte 
Kemp, Julia Ellsworth, Jewell Ellsworth, Chloe Welker, 
Sylvia Sessions, La Prelle McBride. 

This stake was one of the foremost in introducing con- 
joint work, as well as the combination of all stake meetings 
on one day, with the opening session of the various quorums 
and associations held together. They claim the distinction 
of being the first to introduce the custom of ladies removing 

432 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

their hats in places of religious worship. It is here also that 
the experiment of sending- out a lady teacher from the Relief 
Society with the gentleman teacher from the teachers' 
quorum was tried for a time, and it must be recorded that the 
experiment was attended with excellent results. There is a 
loving- sympathetic influence throughout all this stake, which 
makes for peace and harmony in every quorum and or- 
ganization. The work of Mutual Improvement is benefited 
in this uplift, and the girls are not slow to take advantage of 
all opportunities. There are now twelve associations with a 
membership of 450, and their work is fully up to the standard 
set by the best and foremost of Zion's daughters. 


The history of the beginnings of this stake has been 
given in more or less fullness in the first chapters of this 
book; for they were in reality the beginnings of the move- 
ment itself. It may prove of interest, however, to give in 
greater detail the subsequent history of this stake. 

The organization of the wards in Salt Lake City into 
Young Ladies' Retrenchment Associations, begun unoffi- 
cially in the Nineteenth ward in 1870, was carried forward 
rapidly by Eliza R. Snow and her associate workers, ZinaD. 
Young, Mary Isabella Home, Margaret T. Smoot, and oth- 
ers of the leading women of Salt Lake City. In 1877 in ac- 
cordance with the expressed wish of President Brigham 
Young, just prior to his death, the name was changed to the 
Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement Association. In 1878, 
the matter of joining the sisters' ward organizations under 
stake boards to conform with the priesthood organization, 
then nearly completed, was presented by Sister Eliza R. 
Snow to President John Taylor. The approval of the pre- 
siding authority of the Church was heartily given, and 
a conference of the sisters living in Salt Lake City was 
called under the direction of the presidency of the Church. 
At this meeting Sister Snow presided, and after some pre- 
liminary talks by the sisters, there was a stake organization 
of the Y. L. M. I. A. of the Salt Lake stake of Zion effected, 
having 21 local organizations, and conforming to the bound- 
aries of Salt Lake county. Mary A. Freeze was made 
president. Her counselors, chosen at a later date, were 


Louie B. Felt and Clara Y. Conrad. Ellis R. Shipp was 
secretary until her removal from the city, when Augusta 
Joyce Crocheron was chosen for this office. In 1882, Clara 
Conrad having" died and Louie Felt resigned on account of 
her duties in the Primary association, Maria Y. Dougall and 
Nellie Colebrook (Taylor) were chosen to fill the positions 
of first and second counselors. 

At a special meeting of the officers of this stake held 
October 15, 1898, President Mary A. Freeze tendered her 
resignation, having been appointed on the General Board as 
an aid. Her withdrawal from the position which she had 
held for twenty years was a great trial to all her associates . 
The stake historian says of Sister Freeze: " During the 
twenty years of her service, her devotion to the members of 
her associations was at all times exhibited." By her untiring 
energy she won the love of the entire membership of the or- 
ganizations, which was at the time of her resignation nearly 
2,500. One of the most brilliant receptions ever given 
in this stake, where there had been many delightful affairs, 
was the one tendered President Freeze at the time of her re- 
tirement. Tickets were issued to each member and officer 
of the associations, and they with their escorts, to the num- 
ber of nearly 3,000, assembled to do honor to their retiring 
president. The hall was beautifully decorated, and there 
was a program of music and speeches, with refreshments for 

The officers in service at the time were: president 
Mary A. Freeze; counselors Mary Pratt Young, Nellie Cole- 
brook Taylor; secretary Elizabeth Smith Cartwright; 
treasurer Lucy Woodruff Smith; corresponding and record- 
ing secretaries Minnie H. James and "Lizzie G. Fowler; 
aids Maria Holt, Edith Sampson, Clara S. Carlyle, Mary 
E. Irvine, Elizabeth Home, ZinaB. Cannon, Annie J. Mur- 
phy, Isabelle Erickson, Emily C. Adams, Laura H. Merrill, 
Rena Wheeler, Mary B. Richards, Don nette Smith (Kesler), 
Mary I. Felt, Amy Ball, Jennie Y. Smith, Rachel Grant and 
Marie Jonasson; music director Maud P. Griggs; organist 
Maggie T. Gibbs. In addition the following had acted dur- 
ing the incumbency of President Freeze: Romania B. 
Pratt (Pen rose), Victoria Clayton (McCune), treasurers; 
Margaret Shipp (Roberts), Jane G. Freeze, aids; Ella Dal- 




las, corresponding secretary; Maggie Freeze Bassett, music 

The next president, Nellie Colebrook Taylor, took up the 
work with all possible zeal, and under her skillful control 
many new features were added to the work. Her counselors, 
Lucy Woodruff Smith and Emily Caldwell Adams, were 
among the brightest minds in the whole stake, and the three 
bent every energy to formulate new plans and to develop 
original ideas. They were most capably assisted by that 
queen of secretaries, Elizabeth Smith Cartwright, and all 
other members of the former board who continued in their 
respective positions. 

During the presidency of Nellie C. Taylor the following 
also acted upon her board: Annie S. 
Musser, Rose J. Badger, Nellie D. 
Woodruff, Julia Farnsworth Lund, 
Addie Eldredge, Ida Savage, Phebe 
Scholes, Clarice Thatcher, Minnie 
L. Snow, Edna Harker, Sarah 
Heath, Lucy Grant Cannon, MaryE. 
Connelly, Mary F. Kelly, Maria C. 
Taylor, Lottie P. Baxter, Elen Wal- 
lace, Maggie Hull. Under Presi- 
dent Nellie C. Taylor the stake 
was divided into districts which were 
systematically visited and the visits 
reported at the monthly officers' 
meetings, which have always been 
held in this stake. The written and 
verbal reports now instituted enabled the stake presidency to 
keep inclose touch with every ward organization. 

Out of the southern portion of the stake Granite and 
Jordan stakes were formed in 1900, leaving thirty associa- 
tions in Salt Lake, where there had been fifty-five and a 
membership of 2,929. The stake was again divided in 1904, 
four stakes being formed out of the one then in existence- 
Ensign, Liberty, Pioneer, Salt Lake. At this juncture, Nel- 
lie C. Taylor was selected to fill a place on the General 

The new Salt Lake stake board was organized April 20, 
1904, Lucy Woodruff Smith being appointed to the leader. 




ship of what was at that time the newest and oldest stake in 
Zion , with Elizabeth Smith Cartwright and Ann Dilworth 
Groesbeck as counselors and Clarissa A. Beesley as secre- 
tary and treasurer. Later the following- were added: Louetta 
Brown, corresponding secretary; Maria C. Taylor, Mary Ida 
Felt, Sarah M. Newman (Twitchell), Eva Forsberg, aids. 

September 29, 1908, the former presidency was honor- 
ably released and the following elected: president Clarissa 
A. Beesley; counselors Mary Ida Felt, Melvina Peters; 
secretary and treasurer Catherine Folsom; with the other 
members of the board in the same positions. In 1909 Erne 
Ashton and Ida M. Lane were added as aids. Having been 
called on a mission, Clarissa A. Beesley was 'released and 




Mary Ida Felt became president, March 18, 1910, with Eliz- 
abeth S. Cartwright and Louetta Brown as counselors; 
Catherine Folsom, secretary; Eva Forsberg, corresponding 
secretary; Effie Ashton and Ida M. Lane, aids. 

The membership furnishes interesting data. When 
President Freeze left the stake in 1898, there were nearly 
2, 500 members, with fifty- five ward associations. After Jordan 
and Granite were taken off, it required five years to bring again 
the membership near to the original mark. When the 
stake was cut into four, there were 2,392 enrolled members 
with thirty-seven ward associations. Now (1910) there are 
756 members enrolled, with only eleven ward associations. 
This is an average of 45 members to the ward in 1898, of 64 
members in 1904, and 69 members at the present time. This 

436 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

is very significant of the untiring labors which have brought 
about results so pleasing. The Salt Lake stake now includes 
the Fourteenth , Fifteenth , Sixteenth , Seventeenth , Nineteenth , 
Twenty-second , Twenty-third , Twenty-fourth , Twenty-eighth , 
Twenty-ninth and Center wards of Salt Lake City. 

Much stress has always been laid upon monthly officers' 
meetings in this stake, and the frequent classes wherein were 
conducted model lessons from the Guide and Journal, have 
given wide impetus to the educational work thus attempted. 
The key-note of all their work has ever been the establish- 
ment in the hearts of the girls of a love for the gospel and an 
understanding of its principles. 

One of the first conventions of Y. L. M. I. A. ever held 
was in this stake, September 1902, and here all officers and 
members were instructed in the conduct and management of 
lessons and general work. It was here the resolution for the 
promotion of better order in our religious gatherings and a 
greater reverence for all sacred places had its birth, and a 
vigorous canvass was made for years in all the wards looking 
to the enforcement of this regulation. 

The social side of human nature was early recognized by 
these officers as of the utmost value in promoting religious 
work: accordingly, great pains have been taken to arrange 
both stake and ward gatherings, which were models of the 
beautiful spiritual atmosphere which can permeate our gather- 
ings, even in the midst of youthful gayety. Great excursions 
have been taken to Saltair and to many other places, banquets 
have been given most successfully, parties and all kinds of 
social entertainments have characterized the progress of this 
stake and have been of great value in the work. One de- 
lightful feature of the work done under Sister Mary A. Freeze 
was the collecting of means with which to emigrate various 
worthy yet poor Saints from the old country. And today 
many prayers ascend to the Throne of Grace in behalf of some 
of the early earnest workers in this stake who denied them- 
selves all luxuries and some comforts in order to bring to 
Zion some of her choicest Saints. Many balls and other en- 
tertainments have been given by the stake board to assist 
missionaries going upon missions to preach the gospel; and 
it was in this stake that the missionary farewell had its origin 
In the past, this stake did much for the Deseret Hospital, and 


liberal donations were always forthcoming to that worthy 
enterprise conducted by women, in those good old days. 
This stake has also been much interested in the physical 
education of the youth, and was, of course, at the very front 
in the movement to establish a gymnasium in Salt Lake City 
for our young people. The workers gave of their time and 
means, as well as of their vital strength, and surely none of 
these righteous efforts are ever lost to the world. When there 
was a call, in the old days, for the representative women of 
the General Board to go to the National Council of Women, 
this stake at once undertook elaborate entertainments, and 
once raised sufficient means to send the delegates, without 
calling on any other stake; this was before the dime fund was 
established. President Elmina S. Taylor was devoted in her 
feelings to the board of the Salt Lake Y. L. M. I. A, for 
never was there a jar and never was there a lack of sym- 
pathy and comradeship between these two bodies of earnest 
women. In the early days General President Elmina S. 
Taylor and her counselors usually met with the Salt Lake 
stake board, many of their meetings being held at her home. 

No one feature of their work commands greater respect 
than the union and harmony which have always existed be- 
tween the two stake boards in the Mutual Improvement cause. 
The young men have ever rendered to the girls the utmost 
honor and assistance in every branch of their work; and the 
girls have responded by as true loyalty and devotion as could 
be possible. Whatever has been done has been done in 
harmony, and with the united efforts of both boards splendid 
receptions and excursions have been given. 

Recently this stake established a Mutual Improvement 
bureau consisting of some of the best speakers, readers and 
musicians of the stake. Each ward had the privilege of 
asking for any of these persons to assist in its conjoint Sun- 
day evening program . 

The present board of young lady officers feels that much 
of the success that has attended their labors is due to the 
consideration and kindness shown them by the presidency of 
the stake and the superintendency of the Y. M. M. I. A. The 
beautiful spirit of harmony that has prevailed in the ranks of 
the Salt. Lake stake Y. L. M. I. A. is sufficient assurance of 
the excellent work accomplished by that stake of Zion. 




Another of our distant stakes is San Luis in Colorado, 
and subject, as have been the others, to the vicissitudes of 
settling up new countries under pioneer conditions. How- 
ever, there are more resources here than in some localities 
and the people have taken ample advantage of all their op- 

The work in the Y. L. M. I. A. really began in the 
Manassa ward, in the year 1880, with a ward association. 
This association has been the main-spring of many onward 
movements in the stake. During the years 1886 to 1890, 
this ward saved funds for the erection of a hall; the girls 

raising $225 besides meet- . , 

ing all their own expenses. 
The average membership was 
very heavy, being between 
eighty and one hundred girls. 

They have since united 
with their mothers in the Re- 
lief Society and bought a 
neat little hall in Manassa 
where the two organizations 
hold their meetings. They 
papered and painted the hall , 
carpeted the floor, bought 
comfortable chairs and then 
purchased an organ. All this 
is a part of the Manassa ward 
history, and this association 
is still financially well-to-do. 
They have 124 shares of 
stock in the ward store, 
and $50 out at interest. One 
has nothing but admiration IRENE u. SMITH. 

for these girls and their ef- 
forts. The organization of the Y. L. M. I. A. of this stake 
was effected at a quarterly conference held May, 1890. The 
following stake board was chosen and sustained; Irene U. 
Smith, president; Viola J. Helm and Maria J. Harrison, 
counselors; Mary J. Thomas, secretary and treasurer. 

The present officers are united and energetic and attend 
their officers' meetings well and regularly. 


Since those already mentioned the following- officers have 
served on the stake board: presidents Florence Reece, 
(Oct. 1907) and Emily J. Smith (Dunn), (July, 1908); 
counselors Lettie S. Jensen, Emma Foster, Emily J. 
Smith, Agnes Harrison, Jessie B. Smith, Mary Grace Crow - 
ther and Marcella Christenson; secretaries and treasurers 
Emma King, Mary E. Reynolds, Maggie Berhine, Daphne 
Dalton, Maggie Harrison and Ora Jensen; org-anists and 
choristers Annis Christensen, Fanny Weimer, Barbara De- 
Priest, Daphne Dalton and Cora Holtsclaw; aids Mary J. 
Thomas, Dollie E. Russell, Lauretta Peterson, Dixie Fau- 
cette, Julia Whitney, Fannie Weimer, Lettie Jensen, Celia 
Smith, Doretta Mortensen, Sadie Nielson, Alice Reed and 
Emma Smith; librarians Mary E. Jensen, Lizzie Thomas 
and Ray Heisielt. 

The stake has started a traveling- library; and althougfh 
somewhat small, they hope to increase the number of books 
every year, until they shall be second to none in this particu- 

The three wards of this stake were org-anized previous 
to the organization of the stake board: Manassa, Richfield 
and Sanford. There is a membership of 151. 

The young- ladies of the stake have furnished the stake 
house with two beautiful sacrament sets of silver, also a 
handsome cupboard in which to store them; and they have 
helped on the ward meetinghouses. The thriving: 
condition of this stake is not all due to favorable 
climatic conditions for there are many excellent 
people here, and the girls in the Mutual certainly prove that 
the good spirit is present with them in all their labors. 

The last few summers, the girls have devoted their 
weekly sessions to the study of domestic science and domes- 
tic art. At the beginning- of the season for 1909, a girls' 
party was given, each girl bringing- her mother, and the re- 
sults were so delightful that there is talk of making this a 
feature of their work. All in all, this stake is quite on a par 
with the others in the larger and more prosperous sections of 
the Church. 


The San Juan stake extends from Moab on Grand river, 
Utah, to Hammond on the San Juan river, New Mexico. To 



visit all the associations in this stake, one must travel about 
six hundred miles over the roughest roads in this section of 
country. This involves tremendous difficulties for the stake 
officers who undertake to visit each association once a year, 
but the labor is performed cheerfully and prosecuted vigor- 
ously. This country is wild and full of historic interest. 

It is here that the archae- 
ological society finds its 
richest field for research, rel- 
ics of pre-historic races ex- 
isting in abundance. Here 
also are found the wonderful 
natural bridges, one of which 
is the largest in the world. 

The stake board of the Y. 
L. M. I. A. was organized at 
Bluff, Utah, on the 23rd of 
December, 1885, with Mary 
M. Halls of Mancos, Colorado, 
as president, with Mar}'' N. 
Jones and Magnolia F. Walton 
of Bluff as her counselors; 
and Mary Hammond of Bluff 
as secretary and treasurer. 
Three years later the secre- 
tary moved away, and Louie 
M. White of Mancos was chos- 
en to fill her place. In 1891, ex- 
perience having demonstrated 

the necessity of having all the members of the stake board 
located in one town, the board was partially reorganized, 
Mary M. Halls continuing as president with Euphrasia Day 
and Johanna Halls (Smith) as counselors; the secretary 
remaining the same. Later Sister Day moved away and Ma- 
dora Barker (Burnham) was chosen in her place as first 

In addition to the sisters already named, the following 
have acted upon the stake board: secretaries and treasurers 
Clara H. Burnham, Effie Hammond and Leila Stephens; 
aids Isabella W. Hammond, Sarah A. Dean, Mary Taylor, 



Lucy Burnham, Mary C. Roberts, Clara M. Taylor, Lucinda 
E. Redd, Mary Lyman and Sarah Halls; chorister - Vida 

The sudden and violent death of Mary Taylor, a stake 
aid, who was thrown from a carriage in July, 1905, was a 
great loss as well as shock to all the girls in this stake. 

The scope and influence of this stake has increased from 
its organization to the present time. Beginning with but 
three associations, there are now nine, and all are lively and 
prosperous. At first the conditions permitted only a con- 
joint conference with the Relief Society and P/imary in 
which the Y. L. M. I. A. had but thirty minutes to present 
their work. Now they have, at the regular quarterly con- 
ference every three months, the Sabbath evening in conjoint 
sessions with theY. M. M. I. A. The girls are very much 
encouraged over thrs growth, and in very recent time there 
have been greater opportunities given them in.the way of dis- 
trict conventions, in which several associations meet together 
to render a prepared program of lectures, etc., on subjects 
conducive to the advancement of the M. I. A. work. Many 
Indians are located in this stake and some have accepted the 
gospel, and are numbered with the Church of Jesus Christ 
of Latter-day Saints. The conventions in September 
are looked forward to with eager zeal. On account of the 
long distances between wards, two conventions are held in 
this stake, and they are well attended. 

The associations of the stake always send a representa- 
tive to the June conference in Salt Lake City. Some work 
has been done recently in literary subjects, and evenings 
have been devoted to book reviews of the classics supplement- 
ed with Utah authors. They are very appreciative of the 
Guide work and are faithful subscribers to the Journal. All 
in all these associations are doing a most excellent work 
among the daughters of Zion, and great is their joy in that 


South Sanpete stake is noted as having been the home 
of many intelligent and progressive Scandinavians, among 
them President Anthon H. Lund. Under the able leader- 
ship of President Canute Peterson, Missouri pioneer, friend 



of the Prophet Joseph Smith and trusted associate of Brig-ham 
Young-, the stake made rapid progress. The people of Utah 
owe much to these pioneers from the Norse country. Here 
in Manti was reared the beautiful white stone temple, which 
was the second to be completed in this inter-mountain coun- 
try. And here, too, Christine Willardson, the gentle pres- 
ident of the stake board of the Y. L. M. I. A., has labored 
and studied to keep her work up to the standard set by its 
founders, and she has succeeded passing- well. 



There was a local organization of the Retrenchment As- 
sociation formed in Ephraim, April 18, 1873, by President 
vSarah A. Peterson of the Ephraim Relief Society. The offi- 
cers were: Carrie Jensen, president, with Christine Willard- 
son, Kate Madsen, Julia Thorpe, Julia Dorius, Annie Toft 
and Ann Peterson as her counselors, and Helen Armstrong 
(Young), secretary. Forty members were enrolled in the 
initial association and the meetings were held monthly. Dur- 
ing the next six years some changes occurred in ths board, 
but the work went steadily on. By the year 1879, the meet- 


ings were so popular that they could be held weekly, instead 
of monthly, and there were 100 members enrolled. 

Retrenchment in dress was unnecessary in this place 
where all were attired in modest calico or comely home-made 
woolen dresses, and were crowned with honest home-made 
hats. The girls drew up the usual resolutions, however, 
omitting: that part which dwelt upon retrenchment in dress. 
They were required by these resolutions of theirs to live ex- 
emplary lives, and not to accept the "company" of young 
men who used tobacco or liquor. 

This reform association was a new thing, and it was no 
easy matter, even in Sanpete, to carry some of their good 
resolutions into effect. For a time they encountered the his- 
toric scorn and ridicule which is the fate of all reforms and 
reformers. It was this which made the youthful president 
feel the need of six counselors. In numbers, she felt, there 
would be support and strength. 

The financial report of this society for the first six years 
will sufficiently indicate their occupation. 


Three quilts to the poor $ 6.00 

To Sacrament set for tabernacle . 10.00 

To chandeliers for tabernacle 10.00 

56 pounds of cheese were made and donated 8.10 

Charitable purposes 33.00 

Manti temple 50.00 

Total $117.10 

Hats valued $ 14.00 

Two quilts 4.50 

Cash for temple 8.00 

Wheat stored from our gleaning 65 bu. 

The donations for the temple were gathered by volun- 
tary donations of 10 cents a month from each member. When 
one remembers how extremely scarce money was in that day 
and how few ways girls had of earning the same, this is a 
magnificent showing of enthusiasm and work. 

In 1878 the stake board of the Mutual Improvement As- 
sociation was organized, with the following officers: Helen 

444 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Armstrong Young-, president; Christine Willardson and Hil- 
da Dehlin Peterson, counselors; Viola VanCott, secretary. 
These sisters, with some changes, labored for the next ten 
years, when Christine Willardson was chosen president. In 
addition to the ones already named, the following sisters 
have acted in different capacities upon the stake board: coun- 
selors Caroline J. Staal sen, Olive Lowry, Margaret Kjar, 
Alvira Cox, Lillian Peterson, Catherine A. Conover, Marie 
Willardson, and Diantha L. Reid; secretaries and treasur- 
ers Elizabeth Bean Petersen, Hannah Wickman (Arm- 
strong), Dorcas Christiansen, Sophia K. Jensen, Marie Wil- 
lardson, Julia Dorius, Blanche T. Bailey, Nettie Alder, Jessie 
Wintch and Sarah A. Hansen; chorister Dean Parry; aids 
Minerva W. Snow, Sarah A. Peterson, Helen E. Arm- 
strong Young, Rhoda W. Smith, Edith Larsen, Lillian 
Peterson, DianthajL.Reid, Belle T.Copening, Emma C. Peter- 
son, Lilly Barton, Ann Willardson, Anna Peterson, Sarah 
Patterson, Eunice Madsen, Cordelia Anderson, Josie Munk, 
Zina McAllister, Cornelia Peterson, Sedonia Olsten, Anna 
Mickleson, Sarah Hougaard, Belle Tuttle and Luella Lowry. 

In November, 1899, this stake was divided into the 
North and South Sanpete stakes, and the officers were con- 
tinued as the board of the South Sanpete stake, as they all 
resided there. There were fifteen wards previous to the 
division, and eight were left in South Sanpete; since then 
another association has been made in Ephraim, making nine 
associations in this stake. 

The beautiful custom of responding to roll call with a 
sentiment has been followed in this stake for many years. In 
Ephraim, a weekly manuscript paper was edited for years; 
some of the other wards followed this excellent example. 
When the Journal was started in 1889, this custom fell into 
more or less disuse, but some wards still find it profitable 
and interesting. Book of Mormon lectures as well as many 
Bible talks were given at the meetings, before the Guide was 
published. The treasury was kept very comfortably full, 
considering time and conditions, through parties, theatrical 
entertainments and other forms of social enjoyment. Quilts 
were made and donations of various salable commodities, as 
well as small sums of money were given. It was always the 
boast of President Elmina S . Taylor that if there were any 


means or help needed by the General Board, this stake was 
the first contributor. More wheat was left on the ground by 
pioneer harvesters than is permitted by modern machinery; 
and the girls would organize gleaning parties, and go out in 
merry groups, to follow as Ruth did Boaz but not so design- 
edly. This wheat was stored with the Relief Society's 
wheat, and became a source of pride to the girls. 

For many years, the conferences of the girls were held in 
connection with their mothers' Relief Society conferences; 
and glorious were the times experienced by these two bodies 
of congenial women workers, and their meetings were often 
spiritual feasts. 

Recent contributions to the glorifying of the Manti tem- 
ple have consisted in delicate lace curtains, and gifts of mon- 
ey. The girls were very liberal in donations to the Salt Lake 
temple, and, although they have not felt the financial side of 
their work to be of paramount importance, yet they have 
never been laggard or been anything but generous in local or 
general donations. This has included ward churches mission- 
aries, academies and schools, libraries, and charitable pur- 
poses. These girls edit a weekly paper for their conjoint open- 
ing exercises; and use with great success the Guide lessons. 

President Christine Willardson, and her counselor and 
sister, Marie Willardson, recently spent a winter in Salt Lake 
City studying methods and books for the improvement of 
their work in the Mutuals . Both are representative of the 
best type of Mormon girls. 

The records show that, almost without exception, these 
girls pay a strict tithing, and are observers of the Word of 
Wisdom. The only difficulty is that most of them are so busy 
"doing things" that it is hard to get them to tell the histor- 
ian about it. 

Among the original ideas for summer work, this stake 
put all the programs and meetings in the hands of committees, 
thus giving a new set of girls experience in conducting meet - 
ings and in carrying responsibility. The Senior and Junior 
girls give also a series of pleasing entertainments to each 
other and to the mothers of the community. This year a 
house to house canvass is being made by the officers. 

We may leave this stake with a happy consciousness 
that they are in the van of good work and strenuous endeavor. 




The North Sanpete stake was organized from the north- 
ern portion of the Sanpete stake of Zion at a conference 
held in Moroni, December 14, 1909. The following- officers 
were then chosen to form the stake board: president Annie 
D. Stevens; counselors Mary Peterson and Helena Anderson 
(Hanson); secretary and treasurer Annie Larsen; assistant 
secretary and treasurer Marie Petersen. In 1901 the fol- 





lowing aids were appointed: Ellis Day, Kate Reese (Lewis), 
Emma Bunnel and Bertha Olsen. 

The large number of young ladies, 654, enrolled in 
this association at its organization speaks well for the 
interest in the Mutual Improvement work; and these 
members are energetic, faithful and earnest in the cause. 
The membership has not increased, as the stake officers in- 
struct ward officials to keep only working members on their 
rolls; it is useless, so say these active girls, to burden rolls 
with names of absent or careless members, who are no help 
and who never come to meetings. To be an active member 


is considered a great honor, and through the spirit of emu- 
lation they seek to enlist every girl in the stake. In 1903 the 
beginning of a traveling library was made by the purchase of 
115 books, which are distributed among the local associations 
and exchanged at regular intervals. In addition to the 
traveling libraries, local libraries exist in some ot the wards, 
to the extent of 278 books. Among the members of the as- 
sociation there are some 296 subscribers to the Journal. This 
stake always takes a leading rank in the amount of home 
reading reported. The difficulty with which the association 
has had to contend is the distances between the stake head- 
quarters and the different ward associations, making it diffi- 
cult to hold monthly officers' meetings. 

There are now eight wards in the stake as follows: Fair- 
view, Mt. Pleasant North ward, Mt. Pleasant South ward, 
Spring City, Moroni, Wales, Fountain Green and Chester. 
These wards are from 6 to 18 miles from headquarters. 
Generally the stake board, in a body, has visited each of the 
local associations from four to six times annually, mingling 
with the members, thus forming and cementing ties of friend- 
ship and loving interest which serve to bind the associations 
very closely together. No weather has been too cold and no 
storm too severe for these officers to fill their appointments. 
This certainly indicates great interest in the work among the 

During President Stevens' time the following acted with 
the ones already named: counselor Sarah Fowels; secre- 
taries Elvira Euphrasia Day, Elnora Reynolds; music 
director Sarah Christenson; organist Alice Cheney; aids 
Mamie Bradley, Nellie Ostler, Mary Ellen Allred, Letitia 
Nelson, Ellis Day. 

On account of President Stevens' removal from the stake 
the board was reorganized September 8th, 1906, and a new 
one formed as follows: president Mary Ellen Allred ( Acord); 
counselors Helena Bunnel and Sarah Clausen; secretary 
Stella Larsen. The following have since acted on the board 
in the offices named: counselor Jennie C. Watson; secre- 
taries Ruth Frantzen, Eva Allred; chorister Beatrice 
Proctor; librarians Bertha Musig, Lorena Draper; aids 
MinaHasler Sorenson, Ellen C. Petersen, Zilla Faux Larsen, 
Elvira Cox Bench, Macel Tidwell. 

448 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

One praiseworthy feature of the work in this section is 
the excellent work done by the stake secretaries, their records 
being in almost perfect shape from the beginning. The stake 
treasury has never been empty and yet the accumulation of 
funds is looked upon as of secondary importance. The im- 
provement of the young women spiritually and mentally must 
always be the first consideration. The able talks and lec- 
tures, the beautiful testimonies, the readings, the singing 
and the prayers offered, all tell of a growth that is marvelous. 
The daughters of Zion in North Sanpete are thoroughly 
alive and abreast of the times. 


This region of country, lying in the center of the state 
of Utah, has one of the best water systems in the western 
country. Until the completion of the great Otter Creek res- 
ervoir, about 1895, the people met the same hardships as in 
other dry sections, but they now have a very fertile section, 
where they raise crops of every kind, though their greatest suc- 
cess is i.i raising sugar beets . As a result a sugar factory is to be 
built in their midst in the near future. The people who settled 
here are among the best and most spiritually minded of all 
the Saints. 

The organization of the stake Mutual was effected by 
Sisters Eliza R. Snow and Mary Isabella Home at a con- 
ference of the Relief Society, held May 26, 1879. Elizabeth 
Ramsey was elected president of the stake, with Hannah J. 
Spencer as first and Clara F. Young as second counselor, 
and Ina F. Hunt (Bean) as secretary. At the removal of 
Sister Young, Catherine A. Hunt was chosen to act as second 

In November, 1879, the statistical report shows a mem- 
bership of 101 members with 18 officers. There are now 
sixteen associations with 690 members. From November, 
1879, up to 1882, the young ladies met conjointly with the 
young men in their quarterly conferences. 

There have been many changes in the stake board of this 
association. While in one sense this might be termed a mis- 
fortune, there is still the advantage of splendid training given 



many young: women. The results have permeated every 
branch of social and religious life in this locality. 

Presidents Elizabeth Ramsey, Hannah J. Spencer 
(November 27, 1880), Eva Heppler (Stewart) (March 19, 
1887), Aggie Gardner (1892), Annie Thurber (December 10, 
1893), Martha Home (October, 1895), Alvaretta Olsen (En- 
g-er) (September 8, 1901), Emma Christensen (December 
17, 1905); counselors Hannah J. Spencer, Clara F. Young-, 
Catherine A. Hunt, Celia E. 
Bean, Rozina Powell, Mary 
H. Baker, Maggie Warnock, 
Marinda Halliday, Alice 
Hatch. Flora D. Bean, Martha 
Home, Olena Olsen, Emily 
Payne, Annie D. Orrock, 
Martha H. Crosby, Eleanora 
Miller, Bertha Thurber,Belle 
Gardner, Amelia Olson 
(Ence), Lydia Cowley and 
Lizzie Seegmiller; secretaries 
Alice Keeler, Hattie Thur- 
ber. Nettie Spencer, Alice 
Hoyt, Annie Westman, El- 
eanor Miller, Eliza Christen- 
sen, Rebecca Dall, Annie 
Ogden, Rebecca Ence, Annie 
Poulson, Clara Orrock, Ag- 
nes Jones, Sarah C. Hansen, 
Nettie May Baker; treasurers 
Martha Home , Lizzie West- 
man (Hansen), Rebecca Dall 
(Ence), Mathilda Dal ton; aids Annie Hendrickson, Birdie 
Theuson, Hettie Allred, Millie Hansen, Sadie Richards, 
Kate Marquardson, Alvaretta Olson (Engar), Belle Fillmore, 
Josephine Christensen, Matilda Dalton, Josephine Beal, 
Pearl Wright, Nellie Bean, Alice Christensen, Lizzie C. Og- 
den, Dora Poulson, Sarah Rust, May Baker, Inez Anderson, 
Elmina Ogden, Sarah Hansen, Amelia Ence, Mary Beal, 
Elmina Scorup. 

The sisters who have stood at the head of this organi- 
zation were faithful workers during their entire term of office. 



450 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

It would take a volume in itself to tell of their efforts, ex- 
periences and the good they accomplished. Elizabeth Stokes 
Ramsey, the first stake president, died at the age of 76 years, 
and was buried July 27, 1908. Although it was many years 
since she had been in office, the girls held her in loving re- 
membrance and covered her casket with flowers. 

A Valentine ball and banquet was given at Richfield, on 
Feb. 14, 1902, to obtain means to start a traveling library; 
the party was all that could be expected in a social as well as 
a financial way; $117.20 was realized. A library committee 
with Kate Kirkham as chairman was chosen, books were 
ordered, boxes made and the traveling library put in cir- 

This stake today is in an excellent condition, with a 
spirit of generous harmony existing throughout. There have 
been some spiritual refreshings in their midst, from the time 
when Sisters E. R. Snow, Zina D. Young and M. I. Home 
used to go amongst them, prophesying, praying, speaking in 
tongues and blessing the girls, to the present day, when fast 
and testimony meetings bring a revival of this old sweet 


The eastern Arizona stake was divided by Apostle, now 
President John Henry Smith on December 18, 1887. The 
two new stakes thus formed were Snowflake and St. John's. 
The following board was then appointed to preside over the 
Y. L. M. I. Associations of the Snowflake stake: president 
Phoebe Kartchner; counselors Adelaide S. Fish and May 
H.Larson; secretary Sadie Smith. On March 2, 1889, Nettie 
Hunt was sustained as secretary, because of the resignation 
of Sister Smith. About this time, the new Guide work was 
taken up and made very profitable by the unremitting efforts 
of the three presiding stake officers, who spared neither 
time nor travel to institute the new work. 

After a time, Sister Kartchner moved to Utah. Her 
counselors were hindered in their duties by sickness and 
family cares, so they presented their resignations, which 
were accepted with regrets. Consequently, in May, 1896, 
new officers were appointed. Sarah Christofferson was made 
president, and set apart for her office, July 5, 1896. She 



chose Eliza S. Rogers and Vina F. Richards as counselors. 
In February, 1900, Sister Augusta W. Grant, of the General 
Board, paid the stake association a visit; while there she 
gave them a book with which to start a traveling- library. To 
this has been added a number of volumes, which circulate 
freely among: the members, much to their edification and en- 

The Young* Ladies Associations of the stake were called 
upon to donate to the stake academy, which was then in 
course of erection. Four of the associations contributed 
$119.15 at this time, and the other associations donated their 
quota before the completion of the building-. 

The second counselor, 
Vina F.Richards, was honor- 
ably released August 27, 

1899, and Lulu Hatch was 
selected to fill the vacancy. 
After a comparatively short 
time, the president moved 
away, and it became neces- 
sary to form a new board. 
Therefore, on December 19, 

1900, Bathsheba Smith was 
appointed and sustained pres- 
ident of the Young- Ladies 
of the stake. She chose as 
her counselors Belle H. 
Flake and Delia F. Smith. 
The new officers were in- 
stalled but a short time be- 
fore they demonstrated their 
fitness and energy. By their 
influence Guide lessons were 
improved, donations were 
raised, and the associations 
made more popular than ever. 

In Augfust, 1903, the stake board was ag-ain reorganized 
with Lydia L. Savage as president and Medora Gardner and 
Delilah Turley as counselors. 

In addition to the sisters already named the following- 
have acted upon the board at various times: counselors 


452 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Martha Hunt, Annie H. Kartchner: secretaries and treasur- 
ers Nellie Smith, Margaret Miller Fish, Dena S. Hulet. 
Annie H. Kartchner, Alvenia Savage, Rachel Smith, Ethel 
Smith; aids Delilah Turley,Lulu Smith, Constance Decker, 
May Decker, Prudence Tanner, June Bushman, Caroline 
Smith, Louie Savage, Jane Brinkerhoff, Martha Hunt, Ellen 
L. Smith, Julia T. Fish, June B. Smith, Ethel P. Westover, 
Mary Smith; librarian Ethel Smith. Mary W. Riggs, the 
first stake class leader, acted for some time, giving good sat- 
isfaction, but was released to fill a mission in the Northern 
States; her successors are Pearl P. Rogers and Jennie Kartch- 

The association at Tula was broken up when that place 
was abandoned in the year 1902, but another one was formed 
at* Show Low, so there are still six associations in this far- 
away southern stake. The officers have many home burdens 
to carry, and what with sickness and struggle with pioneer 
conditions, their labors are not always as efficient as they 
themselves would wish; but surely no one who knows the 
sincerity of the efforts put forth could do anything but ap- 
prove and bless these faithful sisters. No one but God 
knows the sacrifices made by those who have built up homes 
under trying conditions. 

One feature of their recent work is decidedly original 
and commendable: they have undertaken to supplement 
their library books, and the same time stimulate and encour- 
age growth in intellectual lines, by collecting the best orig- 
inal poetry and essays written by the girls, and copying 
them in a manuscript book. Also they are gathering up the 
written sketches and histories of their pioneers and aged vet- 
erans in the Church and having all these copied into books. 
These manuscript books are to be added to the traveling 
library. These girls are demonstrating that culture and 
growth along the best lines is not confined to locality or 
condition a suggestion which may be adopted profitably 
by other stakes. 


This is one of the distant northern stakes, made up of 
several small towns, situated in the cold valleys of Wyoming, 
and composed, therefore, of a sturdy and dauntless people. 



They are inured to hardships, and yet, most have kept the 
tender fires of affection and zeal for their fathers' religion 
burning- brightly upon their own altars. Their failures and 
their difficulties are common to pioneer conditions in any 
isolated region; while their shining- virtues and successes are 
akin to the splendid results shown in the early history of our 
own Utah pioneers. 

Previous to its organization , 
Star Valley was a part of the 
B ear Lake stake of Zion. Star 
Valley stake was organized 
at a quarterly conference held 
at Afton, Wyoming", Novem- 
ber 11, 1892. The following- 
sisters were chosen to form 
the first board of officers for 
the Y. L. M. I. A.: Martha 
Elizabeth Roberts, president; 
Sarah Isabel Call and Alice 
Evelyn Lee, counselors; Myra 
Irene Long-hurst, secretary 
and treasurer; Emily Call, 
organist. At the time of the 
organization of the stake there 
were six associations; but 
shortly thereafter a new one 
was formed, and in 1896 still 
another ward was organized. 
During the four years, 1892 
to 1896, several changes 
were made in the ward organizations owing to varying cir- 
cumstances. In 1899, a new ward organization was effected. 
Since the organization of the stake, the officers have visited 
each of the local associations twice annually, excepting in a 
few instances where contagious diseases prevailed in some of 
the wards. 

The following sisters also have acted in various positions 
on the stake board: counselors Etta Burton, Ida Luetta 
Roberts; secretaries and treasurers Artemecia Call, Janet 
Gardner Humphreys and Carrie C. Burton; aids Clarissa 
Parsons, Hattie Hyde, Mary Titensar, Lena Jenkins and 
Janet Gardner Humphreys; choristers and organists Annie 


454 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Hood, Emily R. Call, Elizabeth Hurd, Janet Hood Gomm; 
librarian Kate R. Gardner. 

It is of interest to note that two of the stake officers, 
Counselor Luetta Roberts and Secretary Myra I. Longhurst, 
have filled missions to Samoa. Through the efforts of Sis- 
ter Longhurst a Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement As- 
sociation was established at Malaela, island of Upolu, Samoa, 
some time between November 1898 and August 1901, it being 
the first in that land. 

The stake now numbers 10 wards with a regular mem- 
bership of 378. There are 48 books in the traveling library 
and 301 in the local libraries. 

The stake historian says: ''We have traveled by team 
when visiting through the stake and were generally our own 
teamsters. We have traveled in snow, rain, and sunshine, 
in bitter cold and intense heat; have had some narrow escapes 
through runaways, but no one has yet been injured: we feel 
that we have been greatly blessed." 

The stake and ward officers' meetings are held monthly, 
where lessons are prepared and delivered according to the 
plan adopted by the General Board. There is a sweet spirit 
of unity and peace in these northern pioneer towns which 
compensates the girls for many necessary sacrifices and de- 
privations. The population is mostly young married people. 
Officers and members meet and mingle on one common 
ground laboring for mutual good and Mutual Improvement. 


The Summit stake Y. L. M. I. A. was organized Nov- 
ember 10, 1878, by the presidency of the stake at Coalville. 
The following sisters were then placed in office: Eliza P. 
Rhead, president; Lucy Stevenson and Marion Frost, coun- 
selors; and Mary J. Brim, secretary and treasurer. Pre- 
vious to this time, however, on October 4, 1874, a local Re- 
trenchment Society was organized in the same town, with 
Hannah Eldredge as president; Sarah Fisher, Eliza P. Rhead 
Margaret Smith, Sophia Frost, Ida Lewis and Ellen 
Miller as counselors; and Lovenia Bullock, secretary. Sis- 
ter Eliza R.Snow effected the organization. In 1877 the name 
"Retrenchment Society" was changed to that of Young- 
Ladies Mutual Improvement Association. 



After the Coalville ward organization was completed 
and in working order, local associations were formed in 
Kamas, Peoa, Henefer and Hoytsville before the stake or- 
ganization came into existence. , ^ ^ _^ 

Under President Rhead 
the following sisters served in 
the stake organization for the 
terms set opposite their names: 
Eliza Rhead, president, seven- 
teen years; Lucy Stephenson, 
first counselor, seventeen 
years; Marion Frost, second 
counselor, eight years; Betsy 
Bullock, second counselor, nine 
years; Annie R. Salmon, 
secretary and treasiirer, (term 
not given); Olive Rhead, sec- 
retary and treasurer, (term 
not given). 

On account of President 
Rhead 's death the stake was 
reorganized October 17, 1895, 
Celestia Y. Pack becoming 
president; Anna May Cluff, 
and Catherine D. Burbidge, 

counselors; Grace E. Pack, secretary; Libbie Young, treas- 
urer. May 6th, 1897, Laura C. Pack succeeded Anna May 
Cluff as counselor. 

When the Summit stake was reorganized, Celestia Y. 
Pack was called to act as president of the Relief Society, and 
a reorganization of the Y. L. M. I. A. stake board was ef- 
fected. This occurred May 19, 1901; the officers appointed 
were: Grace E. Pack, president; Elizabeth Thomas and 
Genevieve Pack, counselors; Edna Williams, secretary; El- 
len Copley, aid and librarian; Florence Brown, Alice Sar- 
gent and Annie R. Phillips, aids. Later Ella Pack be- 
came an aid. During the year 1901 the eleven wards 
of the stake were entirely reorganized and five new asso- 
ciations were organized during that year and 1902 . 

In order for her to go on a mission with her husband, 
President Grace E. Pack Callis was given an honorable 
release, and at a quarterly conference held May 13, 




1906, a new board was sustained: Miriam L. Cannon, 
president; Martha Wilkinson (Mills) and Edna Williams, 
counselors; Alice A. Archibald, secretary and treasurer . 
During Sister Cannon's time the following- acted on the 
board: Ethel Rasband, chorister; Effie Carruth, li- 
brarian; Agnes Stromness, Emma Marchant, Myrtle 
Jones, Eva Pack, Florence Crittenden, Ellen Copley, 
Delphia Hetzler. This board labored at considerable 
disadvantage as the president and secretary lived 

near Park City, far removed 
from the stake headquar- 
ters; nevertheless they accom- 
plished good work . President 
Cannon's recommendation 
that a president be selected 
who lived in or near Coalville 
was finally accepted. 

A reorganization took 
place September 16, 1909, 
when the following board was 
sustained: Lenore Evans 
Boyden, president; Edna Wil- 
liams and Margaret Farns- 
worth, counselors; Artem- 
esia Blake, secretary and 
treasurer; Effie Carruth, li- 
brarian; Jessie Manning, chor- 
ister; Gladys Beard, organist. 
The six first mentioned of 
Mrs. Cannon's aids were re- 
tained and Alice Archibald, 
Maud Eldredge and Emma 
Davis were added. 

All those who have filled positions on this board have 
labored faithfully and to the best of their ability. Although 
located at no great distance from Salt Lake City this com- 
munity has very few advantages of railroad communication. 
Park City may be reached easily, but the route to the head- 
quarters of the stake is very round-about, lying north 
through Ogden, east through Weber canyon, southwest to 
Coalville. All except six of the towns must be visited by 



wagon, over mountain roads at distances varying" from two 
to thirty miles; and in winter the snow lies very deep. 

Summit stake comprised all of the county of that name, 
as well as Almy, Evanston, and Rock Springs in Wyoming, 
until the year 1898, when the three mentioned towns were 
cut off. There are at present thirteen local associations, 
with 331 members. 

In 1900 the stake set out to secure a traveling library; 
accordingly eleven boxes were filled with good books and be- 
gan their migrations around the stake. There are now 210 
books in the traveling library and 154 in the local associa- 

When this stake was put under the splendid manage- 
ment of Elder Moses W. Taylor there was a brightening and 
tightening of all interests. The Mutuals felt the rejuvena- 
tion in common with all other organizations. Situated in 
the tops of the eastern hills of Utah, Summit is forging rap- 
idly forward with its sister stakes in all that is good and 
true. The summer's work has been devoted to piecing 
quilts and studying the literary lessons, varied by lectures 
on Spain, Italy, Sweden and Austria, with a comprehensive 
appreciation of Carpenter's Geographical History. We may 
content ourselves with the feeling that the future will see the 
girls constantly growing upward and struggling to attain 
that perfection of character which is the heritage of the 


This stake is situated in the fruitful farming sections of 
southwestern Canada, and was included in the original Al- 
berta stake. But in 1903, the Canada settlements were di- 
vided into two portions, the older ones on the west remaining 
in the Alberta stake, and the three thriving towns of Stir- 
ling, Magrath and Raymond organized into the Taylor 
stake. The splendid labors of John W. Taylor in this coun- 
try were recognized by naming the stake for him. Associated 
with him in the great and loving loyalty which marks his sin- 
gle-hearted life, was Brother Charles O. Card, without 
whom, and his wife "Aunt Zina," many of the Canadian 
settlers think there would have been no Canada for the 
Mormon people. The town of Raymond is almost exclu- 
sively the product of the successful efforts of Jesse Knight 



and family to establish the mighty industry of sugar- 
raising-. Under a unique system of parceling- out the land 
to settlers there has grown up, as if by magic, a strong, 
affectionate, and prosperous community, who own their 
own homes, and who are growing rich in the various graz- 
ing, sugar-beet, and farming industries which he and his 
sons have so nobly fostered and developed. 

Prior to 1903, at the suggestion of President Charles O. 
Card, the Mutual Improvement Associations of Alberta 

stake were divided into cir- 
cuits. Those associations 
which now comprise the Tay- 
lor stake formed the eastern 
circuit; and over this division, 
there were set officers in the 
various organizations. The 
officers who had charge of 
the Y. L. M. I. A. were: 
president Jennie B. Knight; 
counselors Dora Jacobs and 
Elizabeth M. Porter; secre- 
tary Eva Probert; treasur- 
er Lydia Partridge. These 
sisters labored faithfully and 
well for one year, and then 
the treasurer moved away, 
and Elizabeth King was chos- 
en. One year later, two aids 
were selected: Margaret E. 
P. Gordon and Janet Faddes. 
The latter died in 1906, and 
Katherine Tanner was chosen 
to fill the vacarcy. 

When the Taylor stake was organized in August, 1903, 
these officers were retained as the stake board of the Y. L. 
M. I. A. President Joseph F. Smith presided at the confer- 
ence where this was accomplished, and the sisters were set 
apart to their offices under his supervision . 

Jennie Brimhall Knight left an indelible impression on 
this stake with her amiable disposition and her sympathetic 
insight into girl nature. Her removal to Provo, Utah, 
made a reorganization necessary. 



In May, 1906, the following sisters were sustained: 
president Amelia H. Allred; counselors Edith F. Budd, 
Margaret E. P. Gordon; secretary and treasu/er Mary 
Duke; aids Allie Jensen and Guenivere Brimhall. Elsie 
Heninger, Hattie Clark, and Mabel Powelson were added in 
1907, and Fannie V. Gordon and Lottie H. Knight in 1908. 

Mi-jir.'t P.. P. G>-(l)n, Amelia H. Allred 


Mrs. Allred was a thoroughly well equipped leader, spir- 
itually and intellectually, and did much to place her stake in 
an enviable condition. No fault could be found with her 
work: however, she may have been unjust to herself by being 
too conscientious toward her avocation while still devoting 
heart and soul to the sweet and eternal vocation of mother- 
hood. It was with keenest regret that she was finally released, 
at her own request, on account of her increasing family duties. 

A second reorganization was effected May 15, 1910, 
with the following officers: president Margaret E. P. Gor- 
don; counselors Mary A. Weed and Ina M. Erickson; secre- 
tary and treasurer Lura Redd; aids Jahzeel Merkley, Al- 
lie R. Jensen, Lottie H. Knight, Jennie Fawns, Maud Mc- 
Carty, Marie Young. 

The new president, Mrs. Gordon, is noted as a remark- 

460 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

able class leader, in both local and stake work. She is an 
excellent disciplinarian and she uses the summer months to 
catch up all loosened ends of the winter studies. Her wards 
are certainly as well acquainted with the various lessons 
given as any could possibly be under their circumstances. In- 
deed, their lesson work would do credit to any stake in Zion, 
and put many older and more favored stakes to the. blush 
for the efficiency and intelligence of both leaders and learners. 

The stake owns a g-ood library of 73 choice books, 
and they are eagerly read; while new books are being- 
added constantly. This stake has always been represented 
at the June conference in Salt Lake City in spite of the 
expense and distance. 

The Mutual Improvement Associations stand at the head 
of all the social life in this stake and wield their powerful in- 
fluence for simple and pure standards of living and thinking. 


Teton stake was for many years a part of the Fremont 
stake in southern Idaho. Indeed, it was composed of a few 
scattered families, who left their Utah forbears and located 
in this rich but cold and isolated region, because of stock or 
grazing interests. This is the famous country which Seton- 
Thompson and Owen Wister have made familiar with vivid 
descriptions of the rare hunting and fishing facilities. The 
Tetons are three high unique peaks, rising from the sur- 
rounding mountains with rounded finger-tips of giant size. 
The Jackson Hole valley is famous in local history for the 
notorious bandits once infesting its lovely vale. Other parts 
of the country are known for their historic cowboys and hunt- 
ers. This stake is directly on the way to the Yellowstone 
wonders, and people have many opportunities of seeing the 
beauty of nature in its wildest and most fascinating aspect. 
For eighteen years this isolated and scattered lot of young 
married Saints were without auxiliary organizations of any 
kind, and when the various associations were formed, there 
were only young married women to occupy all the offices and 
fill all the membership pages of the two women's associa- 
tions. However, there is great progress noted in their work 
in the Mutual Improvement Association in the nine years of 
its existence; so that no discouragement is felt by the dwel- 



lers in Teton nor by those visiting- officials who become 
acquainted with the people there. 

September 2, 1901, the Y. L. M. I. A. of the Teton 
stake was organized by President Joseph F. Smith; Sarah 
Eddington of the General Board being- present. The fol- 
lowing officers were chosen and sustained: Mattie A. Tonks 
(Sheets), president; M. Hannah Price and Clara Clawson, 
counselors; Elizabeth Beesley, secretary- treasurer; Agnes E. 
Price, corresponding secre- 
tary; Mary Eddington, Helga 
Thomas and Amy Cheery, 

September 4th, 1904, a 
reorganization was effected 
as follows: Burnetta S. Kill- 
pack, president; Isabel Pen- 
fold and Emma Hulet, coun- 
selors; Agnes Price (Rigby), 
secretary and treasurer; Ada 
Wilson, corresponding secre- 
tary; Mary Sewell, librarian, 
Maud Pratt Griggs, music 
director; Helga Thomas and 
Eva Young, aids. 

A reorganization took 
place on May 16, 1909, when 
Isabel Penfold became 
president with Helga J. 
Thomas and Mary W. Sew- 
ell as counselors; Elvira 
Hopkins, secretary; Lillie 
Winegar, treasurer; A. T. Durrant, librarian; Maud P. 
Griggs, .music director; Ella Rigby, organist; M. A. Griggs, 
senior class leader; Debbie Stevens, junior class leader; Eliz- 
abeth Durrant, Elizabeth Driggs, Marion H. Price, aids. 

August 15, 1909, the Y. L. M. I. A. of the stake was 
again reorganized with the following officers: Helga J. 
Thomas, president; Mary W. Sewell and A. T. Durrant, 
counselors; Dora Dustin, recording secretary; Isabel Penfold, 
treasurer and librarian; Elizabeth Durrant, organist; Bur- 
netta S. Killpack, honorary member, and the remaining 
officers as on the last board. 


462 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Many of the officers above named have served in va- 
rious capacities, and in addition the following have acted: 
librarian Artemesia Penfold; assistant secretary Sarah 
Cole; Journal agent Rebecca Stone; aids Florence Allen 
Cheney, Ora Molen, Eva Englersen. 

This stake, according to the report for 1909, has seven 
local associations with a membership of 185. They have a 
traveling library of 83, and local libraries containing 197 

As an excellent example of what progressive young peo- 
ple can do under most trying circumstances let it be recorded 
that these isolated M. I. workers have developed a most 
admirable course each summer during the past three years. 
It may be instructive to give this course in some detail. The 
two Mutual boards prepared a pamphlet for each summer's 
work containing two pages of instructions to their ward offi- 
cers , followed by a detailed program for each Sabbath evening 
of the season. The subjects were distributed between the 
young men and young lady members, and the meetings were 
generally conjoint. When one reads of such ethical topics 
as "The Relation of Determination to Success," "The Ethics 
of Being Clean, ""Decoration Day, its Origin and Purpose," 
"Loving and Serving," "Ethics of Cheerfulness," "Self- 
Control," "Ethics of Ventilation in Home and Church," 
"Etiquette in Places of Worship," and "Modesty," one real- 
izes what the strength of Zion means. Then these topics 
were relieved by poems from Longfellow, Robert Burns, 
Eliza R. Snow, Goldsmith, Shakespeare and other classic 
and home writers. Character sketches are given of Brigham 
Young, Abraham Lincoln, Eliza R. Snow, James Russell 
Lowell, George Eliot, Edward Everett Hale, Edward Eg- 
gleston, and others. 

In the year 1909, various books were taken for review. 
We find Stevenson represented by "Dr. Jekel and Mr. 
Hyde;" George Q. Cannon by the "Life of Nephi;" Wash- 
ington Irving by "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" and Susa 
Young Gates by "John Stevens' Courtship." All this is added 
to by bits of scientific lore about ' 'The Spectroscope and its Im- 
portance to Science, ' ' ' 'Wireless Telegraphy, ' ' ' 'Aerial Navi- 
gation" "The Seismograph," and other modern marvels. 
Really, this stake's doings give a decided uplift to the heart 


of the student who loves the cause of Zion and who watches its 
growth with intense interest. A further report adds that 
these lively young people hired the big dancing hall in 
Driggs, paying two hundred dollars a season for its use. 
This gained entire control of the amusements of the young 
people of the stake. They organized basket-ball teams in 
every ward, and took the general oversight of all their young 
people's play, thus securing the absolute management of 
their most significant environment and widest education. 


The young women of Tooele ward were organized into a 
Retrenchment Society June 24, 1874, with the following offi- 
cers: superintendent -Jane Dew; president Elizabeth Del- 
amare; counselors Mary Warburton, Caroline Morgan, Eliza 
Clegg, Mary A. Spiers, Barbara Gowans, Martha Bowen; 
secretary Mary A. Atkin; assistant secretary Emily War- 
burton, treasurer Celestia Lee. At this meeting 57 names 
were enrolled; Eliza R. Snow was present. On March 9, 
1877, the first conjoint meeting with the Young Men's Men- 
tal and Physical association was held. The name of the soci- 
ety was changed to the Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement 
Association in September, 1877. Such in brief is the history 
of the beginning of this work in Tooele stake. 

The second society organized was in Grantsville, Septem- 
ber 16, 1874. 

The stake Young Ladies' Association was organized by 
Stake President F. M. Lyman, in January, 1879, with Ann 
Tate as president and Eliza Craner as secretary; the coun- 
selors Sarah Bates and Aroetta Hale not being chosen till 
September 12, 1880. At the first stake conference, held Feb- 
ruary 8, 1879, in Tooele City, Elmina S. Taylor, M. I. 
Home and Zina D. Young were present. 

December 12, 1895, this stake was reorganized. Naomi 
Gillette was made president, with Susannah Dunn and Ellen 
Park as counselors; Bessie Marshall, secretary: Charlotte 
Rowberry, assistant secretary; Jessie Dunn (Huffaker), treas- 

The stake was again reorganized December 3, 1904, 
with the following officers: president Ellen Park; counse- 



lors Annie Bowen (Campbell), Jennie Huffaker; secretary- 
Alice Tate (Hanks); assistant secretary Nettie H. Ander- 
son; treasurer Jessie Huffaker; librarian Ada Nelson Dor- 
emus; music director Edna Nelson (Cornue); organist 
Rebecca Atkin; aids Annie Parkinson, Rachel E. Woolley. 
In addition to the officers already named, the following: 
have acted upon the stake board in various capacities: Ade- 
laide Adams, Emma J. Jefferies, MalindaMcBride, Mary Ann 
Dunn, Etta Judd, Amelia Nelson, Emily Isgreen, Martha 
Dunn, Elizabeth Broomhead, Emma Gee, Sarah Gee, Annie 
Marshall, Nettie Hale, Jane Robinson, Lois Lyman (Dun- 
yon), Mary Gordon, Annie Judd, Evelyn Gordon Isgreen, 
Lillian Spiers, Ethel Wrathall, Jane Robins, Matilda L. 

Clegg, Mary A. Shields, 
Mamie Clark Mathews, Effie 
Atkin, Mabel Johnson. 

There are nine associa- 
tions in this stake with a 
membership of 304 in addi- 
tion to the twelve stake 
officers. While this stake is 
not strong in numbers or 
wealth, there is a commend- 
able desire to do good and 
active work. During the 
past few years, the Young 
Men's and Young Ladies' Mu- 
tual boards have arranged a 
course of lectures, bringing 
speakers from Salt Lake City 
with a view to stimulating a 
desire for higher culture and 
a broader outlook upon life. 
The associations in this 
stake did not close through 
the summers of 1908-1909, but provided original programs 
of a literary and musical nature, with the pleasing innova- 
tion of reading letters from missionaries once a month. In 
recent years, the near presence of the smelters to this vicin- 
ity has brought with them the usual grave menaces of cheap 
dance-halls and other cheap amusements to suit the pleas- 
ures of the many men who are there employed; so that this 



one-time urban and unsophisticated community is fast re- 
ceiving all the impetus for good and bad which comes with 
free mingling: of all classes and sects. Who can measure 
the value of the M. LA. to these girls in Tooele stake? 


Uintah stake, on the far eastern border of the Utah state 
line was a barren wilderness where lived some hardy pio- 
neers and a few roaming savages, when the first Mutual Im- 
provement associations were organized. But with the open- 
ing up of the country came a greater influx of hardy Mor- 
mon settlers, and in a few months there grew up in the 
bosom of the desert a thriving and fruitful population. In 
1887, on February 14th, the first stake Y. L. M. I. A. board 
was organized. There were already three small settlements 
away out. there in Uintah county, Vernal, Merrill and Mill 
wards. Here then, in Vernal the stake was organized, with 
all proper officers, and there had begun another of those 
marvelous western, Mormon transformations which are even 
today the surprise and study of the world. The officers of 
this initial stake board were: Roxana Remington (Iverson), 
president; Henrietta Hatch and Amanda Remington, coun- 

September 24, 1894, Cora I. Johnson was sustained as 
president with Esther Young and Caroline A. Stringham as 

In addition to the officers already named the following 
sisters have acted on the board in various capacities: coun- 
selorsCatherine Calder, Flora E. Collett; secretaries Mary 
G. Gagon, Julia E. Dillman, Sarah E. Collett, Rose M". 
Hardy, Rosella Belcher, Annie E. Young, Geneva Carhart, 
May Hacking Calder; librarians Emeline Y. Pack, Anna 
Smart: aids Annie E. Young, Adaline Longhurst, Frances 
M. Nielson, Sarah Richardson, Alice Bingham, Sarah 
Rudge, Eliza J. Pack; organists and choristers Emeline Y. 
Pack, Myrtle Belcher, Vilate Bennion. 

The officers have changed many times, as girls will 
marry, and then what follows naturally and happily but 
motherhood to partially shut off the young matron from ac- 
tive participation in public affairs? But whoever the presi- 
dent and her associate officers, there has been some most 



excellent and progressive work done in this isolated stake- 
They have suffered several grievous losses by death in their 
official family Caroline A. String-ham, Esther Young, 
Julia A. Dillman, who have been truly mourned by the girls 
among whom they labored. 

With the opening up of the'Uintah reservation lands in 
1905, a new town grew up which was well named after our 
strenuous ex-President Roosevelt. The first Young La- 
dies' Mutual Improvement 
association on the reservation 

. was organized at this town, 

j^ \ September 7, 1909. Isolated 
Bk \ as these little settlements 
k \ have been from railroads, 
jjjJA surrounded with hordes of 
A reservation Indians, hundreds 
\ of miles away from modern 
utilities, they yet grew with 
that slow, upward growth 
which is after all the sanest 
and safest of all communal 
development. There are now 
six associations in the stake, 
with 228 members enrolled. 
The traveling library con- 
tains 63 and the local libra- 
ries 134 books, and they are 
read with the earnestness 
and pleasure which hard- 
earned opportunity gives to 
eager students. The summe r s see the girls in Uintah busy 
on the farm and in fruit fields; but they prepare good pro- 
grams for the monthly conjoint Sabbath meetings, when 
ethics, literature and music share the time. While far away 
from headquarters, they are still close to the divine spirit of 
faith and love, and an excellent spirit prevails throughout 
the entire stake. 


Union stake comprises a most beautiful section of coun- 
try. Situated in the vicinity of the far-famed Columbia river, 




it enjoys frequent rains alternating- with brilliant sunshine. 
Its trees are noted for their beauty, and all undisturbed 
spaces are covered with grass. Almost all kinds of fruit 
grow in abundance, as well as various kinds of grain. 

The town of LaGrande, located in the valley of that 
name, enclosed on one side by the Blue Mountains and on 
the other by timbered mountains, forms the headquarters of 
the stake. It has a population of about 6,000, of whom perhaps 
600 belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day 

Maud Schofield, Edith Nibley, Pearl Lyman, Melissa T.ewis, Ida M. Ferrin, 
Polly L. Storey, Ida L. Andrew, Evalioe Rosenbaum. 

Saints. In the stake there are seven local associations of 
the Y. L. M. I. A., two being in Idaho, about 12 hours dis- 
tant from headquarters on the railway. The first member- 
ship was only 81 for the entire stake, it is now 275. 

The stake board of the Y. L. M. I. A. was organized 
June 9, 1901, by Apostle A. O. Woodruff and his wife, 
Helen Winters Woodruff, and the stake presidency. The 
officers were: Ida L. Perry (Andrew), president; Polly L. 
Storey and Agnes Baird, counselors; Maud Schofield, secre- 
tarv and treasurer. 

468 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

A reorganization took place September 13, 1908, when 
the following preside. icy were sustained, the same secretary 
and treasurer being- continued: Evaline Rosenbaum, presi- 
dent; Rural Pearl Lyman and Mary H. Dalton, counselors. 

In addition to the sisters already named the following- 
have acted upon the board in various capacities: Flora Gid- 
ney, Charlotte Taylor, Mary A. Black, Ileen Clark, Effie 
Blanchard, Susan Myrtle Carbine, Ethel Greenwood, Ida M. 
Ferrin, Edith Nibley (Stoddard), Ollie Nibley, Melissa 
Lewis. Dr. John H. Hubbard of the High Council was ap- 
pointed a special aid by the brethren of the stake presidency 
and rendered valuable assistance. 

The studies for the summer of 1908 were domestic sci- 
ence and domestic art; for 1909, literary work and lecture 
courses; for 1910 the work planned consists of gymnasium 
work and needlework, with one lecture a month. 

The usual number of stake conferences are held, with 
semi-monthly meetings of the stake board and frequent con- 
joint board meetings. 

The traveling library, started in 1901, consists of 182 
volumes of excellent selection. 

Practically all travel in this stake is by railroad. Thus 
far the stake officers have paid their own traveling expenses 
but at present a plan is under consideration by which the 
expenses of auxiliary organizations will be met. An excel- 
lent spirit of unity exists among the people of the stake 
which engenders the true spirit of progression. President 
Rosenbaum claims that no better girls can be found than her 
girls; and she gives much credit to the ward officers for the 
splendid work being done. 


Under the direction of Eliza R. Snow and Zina D. Young 
the first Mutual Improvement Association in Utah stake was 
organized in the year 1874. The first society was called a 
retrenchment association, and Margaret Smoot was called 
to be the president, with Jane Jones and Margaret Cluff as 
counselors, and Martha Riggs Beesley as secretary and 
treasurer. Sister Smoot was a woman of great dignity, and 
of manner most persuasive; and those first meetings held in 
her parlor were influenced by her superior personality. 



Later the meetings were held in the vestry of the old taber- 
nacle, and still later in the county courthouse. 

In the year 1878, the stake was formally organized, with 
Margaret Cluff as president, and Helen Alexander and Cad- 
die' t Daniels Mills as counselors; Emily G. Till (Cluff) as 
secretary and Christine Smoot (Taylor) as treasurer. 

An urgent call for help 
in the Relief Society resulted 
in the resignation of Mar- 
garet Cluff, who was followed 
by Helen Alexander (Har- 
vey) as president, assisted 
by Emily G. Cluff and Zina 
Y. Williams (Card) as coun- 
selors. In the year 1880 
Helen Alexander resigned 
and was succeeded by Emily 
G. Cluff, with Zina Y. Wil- 
liams and Hannah Booth as 

Those early meetings 
were in the main devoted to 
testimony bearing. These 
first officers had many assist- 
ants whose duty, like that of 
the Relief Society teacher, 
was to make collections from 
door to door for the needy. 

Many changes have oc- 
In addition to the sisters already 
named the following have acted in the positions noted: pres- 
idents Jennie Tanner (1883), Zina Lyons (Wilson) (Sep- 
tember 2, 1888), Donna M. Meacham (February 28, 1891), 
Clara Holbrook (Jarvis) (May 13, 1900), Alice Louise Rey- 
nolds (October 1904); counselors Annie Jones (Atkin), 
Hannah Billings (Daniels), Laura Foote, Otillie Maeser 
(Phelps), Grace Smith (Cheever), Ida Coombs, Ellen B. 
Jones, Martha L. Harding, Olive Smoot Bean, Alice L. Rey- 
nolds, Josephine D. Booth (Woodruff), Nell Sumsion, Vilate 
Elliott, Sarah Giles, Ida Alleman, Jennie B. Knight; secre- 
taries and treasurers Annie K. Smoot (Taylor), Annie 


curred in the stake board, 



Jones Atkin, Olive Haws (Glen), Maggie Watson, May 
Smoot Glazier, Fannie Elliott (Dunn), Evelyn Billing's, 
Emma S. Simons, Emma Thatcher, Mary Boshard, Leila 
Meacham Snyder, Ethel Smith, Margaret Bean, Beulah K. 
McAllister; aids Tennie Hinckley, Jennie B. Knight, Mat- 
tie E. Vogel, Lillian H. Cannon, Ellen Senior, Martha Hind- 
tey , Lillie Fairbanks , Annie Hindley , Nell Sumsion , Inez Knight 
Allen,Donna*M. Meacham, Sarah Giles, Rhoda Perry, Mabel 
T. Da vis, Margaret Thurman, Esther Call Stewart, Hattie R. 
Speckart,Leah D.Widtsoe, DettaCaffery, Frances Bird, Bessie 



Gudmundson, Hazel S tailings, Prilla F. Shill, Margaret E. 
Maw, Emma Jensen, Sadie Graham, Achsa E. Paxman, 
Anna H. Hinckley, Fannie Roland, Sarah Whitney, Vilate 
'Elliott, Nellie Schofield. 

Utah stake was divided in January, 1901, the northern 
portion going: to form Alpine and the southern Nebo stake. 
At this time there were 39 local associations and : 1903 mem- 
bers. At the close of 1909 there were 21 associations and 
983 members. 


Similar as the history of the Mutual Improvement work 
of Utah stake may be to that of other stakes, it is not with- 
out its unique features. From this stake went forth the first 
duly authorized girl missionaries Inez Knight (Allen) and 
Jennie Brimhall (Knight). Sisters Knight and Brimhall 
were followed by Josephine Booth (Woodruff), Clara Hol- 
brook (Jarvis), and Vilate Elliott. Since the going forth of 
the first two missionaries, Utah stake has never been without 
a representative from among her girls in the missionary 
field; and those who pioneered the way made a record 


in Great Britain that is not easily overestimated; a record 
generally maintained by those who have followed. Of their 
work one of experience has written: "Perhaps the best 
record that can be made of these girl missionaries is, that all 
their study and travel and varied experiences have but in- 
creased their value as superior wives and character-moulding 
mothers." This work, and much else of a similar nature, 
was fostered under the veteran leader of the stake, Presi- 
dent David John , who was of the broadest mind and heart in 
all that pertains to the advancement of women . 

Sister Donna M. Meacham, whose term of office as pres- 



ident far exceeded in time that of any other president, and who 
has left the impress of her spirituality on all her work, insti- 
tuted a plan of communication between the investigators in the 
mission field and our own girls. The associations began the 
:vork by sending to the elders their Journal, Juvenile Instructor, 
and other pamphlets; thereby opening up an extensive corre- 
spondence with women abroad. The work done has been of 
the quiet, effective sort, that sows seeds for a far away but 
nevertheless rich harvest. 

Good music has for not a few years been a prominent 
feature of the M. I. Association of Utah stake: forth from her 
wards have gone a number of talented young women, recog- 
nized today as among the 
first soloists in Zion. In this 
number we would include 
Emma Lucy Gates, Emma 
Ramsey Morris, Arvilla 
Clark Andelin, Hazel Taylor 
Peery, and Florence Jepper- 
son. Nor would the names 
of half a score of others whose 
voices are far above medi- 
ocre exhaust the list. At 
present there are ten credit- 
able quartets in the various 
wards of the stake. Such an 
atmosphere has had a ten- 
dency to solve the ever pres- 
ent problem of suitable music. 
For many years Utah 
stake was the home of one 
member of the General Board, 
Susa Young Gates, who dur- 
ALICE L. REYNOLDS. ing one or two seasons pre- 

sided over the Fourth ward 

Y. L. M. I. A. of Provo. During her term of office, she, 
with the help of her counselors, Christine Smoot Taylor and 
May Ash worth Booth, conducted a very successful bazaar, 
that funds might be raised to build an amusement hall. For 
this purpose, the meeting house was transformed into artis- 
tically decorated booths, where fine needlework, kitchen 


aprons, laundry bags, prettily dressed dolls, quilts and 
innumerable other articles were exhibited and sold. In the 
center of the hall were long: dining tables from which well- 
nigh half the town ate chicken dinner. Night brought to- 
gether Provo' s best talent in a series of first-class entertain- 
ments. The gross receipts of the week were practically one 
thousand dollars. 

Perhaps no stake in the Church has had greater advan- 
tages for growth than has Utah stake; for in Provo is located 
the Brigham Young University, a school richly endowed 
from on high, one whose spirit is like unto the spirit found 
within the temple of our God. This institution has not only 
educated many of the officers of the M. I. A., but it has at 
all times fostered such pure loyalty to the spirit and genius 
of Mutual Improvement work that its good can not be com- 
puted. Almost without exception the lady missionaries who 
have gone from Utah stake have been students of the institu- 
tion many of them graduates. And what is true of the 
missionaries is equally true of the girls who have distin- 
guished themselves in music. 

In the years 1891 and 1892, with the sanction of Presi- 
dent Elmina S. Taylor, representatives from the Y. L. M. I. 
A. were called from the Church at large to take the Guide 
course of study in the B. Y. U. It included theology, 
domestic science, history, physiology, and civil gov- 
ernment. It might be said that this movement was of 
general interest, and that this work was not especially 
related to the work of Utah stake. Grant the statement; yet 
is it true that, because of the locality, many of that goodly 
number who responded to the call were from Utah 

For many years the B. Y. Academy devoted one morn- 
ing each week to M. I. work. At such times one might wit- 
ness eight or nine associations with an average membership 
of fifty girls, all carrying on their work under one roof. And 
this spirit of mutual help has been reciprocated. To-day in 
the domestic science department of the B. Y. University are 
a number of gas stoves, the gift of the M. I. Association of 
Utah stake and Provo City. 




This small but rather compact stake is situated in a 
lovely valley at the east outlet of Provo canyon. Plenty of 
water, good grazing" and fine grain facilities have made of 
this country a fruitful and comfortable dwelling place. It is 
a little too cold for some of the tenderer fruits to fully ripen, 
but there are plenty of succulent vegetables and delicious 
ordinary fruits. The people have been somewhat isolated, 
and have, therefore, kept many of the genuine and homely 

virtues of hospitality and 
neighborliness bright. They 
may lack in the restive spir- 
it and reckless plunging 
common to railroad centers, 
but they have solid virtues 
and quiet joys which are am- 
ple compensation , for.. .the 
frothier elements .of -the so- 
cial whirl of large cities. 

There were a number of 
Retrenchment Societies in 
these quiet villages before 
the stake board of the Mutual 
Improvement Association 
was organized; but there is 
no record sent down of these 
initial organizations. At the 
present time there are nine 
local associations, with 378 

The stake board of the 
Y. L. M. I. A. was organized 

in the Heber City hall, May 6th, 1881, by President Abram 
Hatch. Josephine C. Jones was appointed president, with 
Mary Duke and Mary Forman as her counselors. Sarah J. 
Hicken was made secretary. After four years service this 
board was honorably released and a new one installed, . 

Several reorganizations have taken place, the date of 
each appearing in the following list, with the name of the 
new president appointed: May 8, 1885 Ruth Hatch; Nov. 
4, 1892 Anna R. Duke: Aug. 28, 1898 Emily Hicken; 




Aug. 7, 1904 Eliza Rasband; Feb. 27, 1910 Clara Clyde. 
With these presidents the following- sisters have acted on the 
board in various capacities: Mary E. Cluff, Sarah Cum- 
mings, Elfreda Jesperson Redmond, Sarah E. Giles Mur- 
dock, Lavinia Murdock, Leonora Duke, Millie Cluff, Lizzie 
Rasband, Georgiana Clyde, Clara Murdock, Annabel Mur- 
dock Clyde, Lucre tia M. Smith, Marg-aret Crook; Mary 
Bond, Jennette McMullin, Margaret J. Murdock, Edith 
North, Bertha Giles, Sarah K. Bridge, Emily C. Colman, 
Anna Smith, Rose B. Musser, Mary H. Price, Christina 

Smithies, Minnie Cummings, 
Mina M. Broadbent, Martha 
J. Duke Rooker, Mabel Price, 
Annie D. Stevens, A ic? 
Jones, Mary L. Willes, Mtbel 
Duke, Nellie Murray, Helena 
Roberts Muri. A number of 
the first workers have been 
continuously engaged on the 
stake board in various ca- 
pacities, and have been a 
source of great strength. 

This stake was one of the 
first to take up summer work 
when it was suggested by the 
General Board. In 1908, in 
connection with the stake 
board of Y. M. M. I. A., they 
planned a course of literary 
programs which were given 
in all the wards in circuit 
form. In 1909 gymnasium 
Altogether the summer work has 


work was undertaken, 
been much enjoyed. 

The advent of President Smart in to this stake, and the 
changes which have since taken place, have given life and im- 
petus to all the branches of spiritual labor. They are forging 
ahead rapidly in fournal subscriptions, as well as in their excel- 
lent convention work. Since the stake established Wasatch 
headquarters at the Brigham Young University, in Provo, 
there has been a stream of young people going- down into 



that intellectual center for training: and culture. The results 
of this are now plainly seen in the improved work done. But 
before this, in the long-ago days of their quiet isolation and 
retirement, there were many pleasant features of Mutual 
work. One especial thing was very commendable: they were 



one of the first stakes to introduce the stake Mutual enter- 
tainment with which to begin the conference. And the 
richest bounties of earth were always provided for these 
banquets, the hospitality of such occasions being as 
wide as the sea and as deep as its waters. Sister Anna 
R. Duke was beloved by all her associate workers, and 
when she was called a step higher, that is, to act as president 
of the Relief Society, she carried with her the respect and 
good will of every girl in the Wasatch stake. This was also 
true of those who preceded as well as those who followed 
after her. With the present organization, there is an awak- 
ened enthusiasm and joy which is ever the harbinger of loftier 
ideas and higher ambitions; so that Wasatch stake will now 
be found close to the front in all branches of spiritual im- 




One of the struggling and most difficult histories of our 
Church chronicles will be set down as belonging to Wayne 
stake. The country is barren, situated high up in the table 
lands of southern Utah. The climate is cold in the western 
part of tfie stake, but in Fruita, after getting down into the 
river "deep," the climate is much warmer and it is semi- 
t-ropical. There are some sons of Utah's "Dixie" in this 
s take, and their training in that forbidding land has helped to 

make heroes of circumstances 
and makers of local history. 
When our brethren first vis- 
ited this section, years ago, 
it was decided that the stream 
of water would be sufficient 
for about two families. Now 
there are eight small towns 
in the confines of the stake. 
At times, some have coun- 
seled abandoning the place; 
but better counsels have pre- 
vailed; and certainly the dis- 
tance, isolation, and hard 
conditions have enriched the 
characters of these girls and 
deepened the possibilities of 
eternal growth and happi- 
ness. There is a cheerful 
and sturdy spirit everywhere, 
due, perhaps, to the strong 
character and heartening 
councils of the stake presi- 
When the head is right, the 
sickly and of poor spirit, how 


dent, Gearson S. Bastian. 
body is well; if the head is 

quickly the body religious shows the effect of that fall- 
ing-off! The farms are watered by expensive reservoirs, and 
when it is remembered that the dams are constantly break- 
ing away, because of the sandy and shifting nature of the 
soil, it will be seen that it requires no small degree of faith 
and pluck to constantly renew them and to cling to the for- 

478 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

lorn hope of future stability. But the end has so far fully 
justified the efforts put forth and the burdens borne. 

The Y L. M I. A. board of Wayne sta ke was organ- 
ized at a stake conference held i n Loa May 26 1893 Miss 

^/ etta n Y( S in if T ch f * a \p re sident. She was assisted by 
MaryD. Bullard and Julia R. j e ff e ry, as counselors. Miss 
Belle Forsyth of Thurber was afterward selected as secre- 
tary Two years later, Miss Y oung . was called to a position 
in the Brigham Young Acad emyj in Provo> and she there . 
fore removed to that place, re sig - ning . her position as presi . 
dent; but she had given the w ork a vig . orous start as she was 
full of zeal and intelligent com prehension of the worknee ded. 
^^fc^ The following officers have 

since acted on the board, the 
presidents being set apart on 
the dates mentioned: presi- 
dents Julia R. Jeffery, Aug. 
i| 25, 1895; Sarah A. Robison, 
rt| . a Jan. 30, 1899; Turzah Han- 

sen, March 29, 1904; Flora 
M A. Russell, Nov. 12, 1905; 
and Rosa May Lazenby, May 
10, 1908: counselors Lotta 
^ Brown, Sarah Rust, Belle 

Forsyth, Turzah Ha^en, 
Edith Lazenby, Ada Potter, 
Sarah E. Eckersley, Armelia 
Taylor and Anna P. McClel- 
lan; secretaries and treasur- 
ers Belle Forsyth, Libbie 
Grundy, Amy Taylor, Annie 
Van Dyke, Louise Taylor, 
Jean Blackburn, Lillian Grun- 
SARAH A. ROBISON. dy, Lettie Morrell; aids 

Sarah Rust, Ella Hunt, 

Amelia Taylor, Florence Mulliner, June Hansen,Rena Forsyth, 
Sarah E. Eckersley, Hannah Blackburn, Edna Snow, Maggie 
Adams, Nellie Hanks, Effie Coonigton, Mae Williams, Adtll 
Earnstson, Rhoda Taylor, Edna M. Nielson, Pauline 
Brown, Anna P. McClellan, Ellen J. Hanks, Rhoda Bastian; 
librarians Sarah A. Lazenby, Nellie I vie and Elvira Taylor. 


There are now eight local associations, with 205 mem- 

Although the conditions are changing in this stake, still 
there are many excellent and faithful souls there who are 
doing yeoman service in reclaiming the desert and planting 
a civilization where only desolation and barrenness formerly 


The first step in Mutual Improvement work was taken 
in Ogden City, when Eliza R. Snow, Zina D. Young and 
Jane S. Richards organized a Retrenchment Association, 
February 14, 1877, with Emily S. Richards as president and 
Josephine R. West, Mary A. Ellis, Adelaide Brown, Maria 
Farr, Hattie Brown and Hannah Burton as counselors. 

This local association had 140 members, held 91 
meetings, and accomplished much in preparing the way for 
the work of Mutual Improvement in the various wards of 
Ogden and Weber county. Following this and prior to the 
stake organization, Mutual Improvement Associations were 
organized by the Relief Society stake president, Jane S. 
Richards, under the direction of Sister Eliza R. Snow, in 
four wards in Ogden and eight in the county. 

At a Relief Society conference held May 10, 1879, .Sister 
Eliza R. Snow organized the first stake board with the follow- 
ing officers: Sarah Herrick, president; Emily S. Richards 
and Josephine R. West, counselors; Harriet C. Brown 
secretary; and Rosaltha Canfield, treasurer. At the date of 
this organization the twelve associations had a membership 
of 440. At a conference held September 19, 1879, Rosaltha 
Canfield was sustained as secretary, as well as treasurer. 
Without further change, the board continued the work of 
organization and visiting the associations until June 21,1884, 
when both counselors resigned, and Ruthinda E. Moench 
and Elizabeth Y. Stanford were sustained to fill the vacancies 
thus created. Later Sister Canfield was released from the 
office of secretary and treasurer, and Mercy R. Burton was 
sustained as secretary, and Mamie Richards as treasurer. 

March 11, 1892, President Herrick resigned and a new 
organization was effected, with Elizabeth Y. Stanford, presi- 



dent; Rosaltha Canfield and Letitia Richards, counselors; 
Maggie Chambers, secretary; and Annie D. Taylor, treas- 

September 20,1894, under the direction of the Y. L. presi- 
dency, the associations of the stake held their first county 
fair in what was known as the Stayner block in Ogden city. 
The exhibits were varied and consisted of home products, 
including art work, hand-painted china, fancy needle work, 

crochet and knit 
goods, millinery, 
boys' tailor-made 
suits, ladies' un- 
der- wear, quilts, 
aprons, pillow- 
slips, dress skirts, 
dairy products. 
There was fruit in 
great abundance, 
all well selectedand 
very choice, and 
flowers of beautiful 
variety. The fair 
was kept open 
several days, and 
large crowds were 
in constant attend- 
ance. All the de- 
partments attract- 
ed admirers and 

patronage. The 
fair was a magnifi- 
cent succes; , both 
socially and finan- 

A s s o ciations 
were organized 
from time to time 
until in 1901 there were twenty-four associations all in 
good condition with a total membership of 1,231. They 
ranged in distance from Ogden of six to twenty miles. 




The financial condition of the association would seem to 
be prosperous trom these figures: At close of report in 1893, 
it had in the treasury $320.95; in 1897, $390.16, and in 1902, 

At the close of 1909 there were eleven local associations, 
with 513 members. Generally, the associations are in a 
healthy and vigorous state and interest in the work is increas- 

Sister Stan- 
tord, who acted as 
president of this 
stake for many 
years, was greatly 
beloved by all her 
associates but ow- 
ing to poor health 
she was released 
September 17th, 
1905, and Jennette 
I. McKay was sus- 
tained in her place 
with Sisters Ra- 
chel M. Middleton 
and Clara A. 
Brown as counse- 
lors, and Florence 
E. Stevens as sec- 
retary. Under this 
organization the 
following sisters 
acted as aids: An- 
nie D. Taylor, 
Mercy R. Stevens, 
Elizabeth M. God- 
dard, Sarah Whal- 
en. EttaG. Shupe, 
Elizabeth Ro- 
haarr, Belva Woodman see, Marian Johnson, Mattie Peterson, 
Julia Flygare, Lucile Wallace, Lettie Taylor, Gwendolyn Wil- 
liams, Elizabeth Culley, Birde Wotherspoon, Etta Browning, 
Jeannette Peterson, Elsie Jacobs, Olive B. Thomas, Mar- 
garet J. Clark, and V. Pearl Burton. 



482 HISTORY OF THE Y. L. M. I. A. 

Weber stake was divided August 9, 1908, and three 
stakes were made of this populous valley. The Weber stake 
Y. L. M. I. A. was reorganized with Joan W. Emmett as 
president and Jeannette P. Parry and V. Pearl Burton as 
counselors. Florence E. Stevens was re-sustained as secre- 
tary and Rachel M. Middleton as treasurer. The following 
sisters acted as aids: Clara A. Brown, Margaret J. Clark, 
Belva Woodmansee, Lucile Wallace, Nell Fowler, Eva E. 
Brown, Esther Harris, and Mabel Shorten. 

Through the resignation of Sister Emmett a new organ- 
ization was effected December 23, 1908, with Aggie H. Stev- 
ens, president; Martha B. Cooley and Amelia Flygare, coun- 
selors; Nell Fowler, secretary. The former board members 
were retained with the addition of Florence C. Poulter, Myr- 
tle Moulding, Bertha Stone and Mildred Rich. 

Mayl, 1909, President Aggie H. Stevens resigned and 
Martha B. Cooley was selected as president, Amelia Flygare 
and Josephine West as counselors, with Nell Fowler still 
retained as secretary. These sisters were not set apart 
however, until June 23, 1909. 

October 12, 1909, Josephine West was released and Mar- 
garet J. Clark was sustained in her place. At this time the 
aids were: Rachel M. Middleton, Florence E. Stevens, Eva 
E. Brown, Florence C. Poulter, Lida Boyle, Tillie H. Poul- 
ter, Mabel Charles worth, Frances Poulter and Nettie W. 
Watson . 

Each corps o*. officers has done such capable work that 
they have endeared themselves to the girls under their charge. 

The Weber stake is noted for its original and scholarly 
work; no stake surpasses it in discipline and in culture. An 
effort to continue Mutual work during the summer months of 
1906 was fairly successful, and since that time each year -a 
summer course has been planned by the stake officers and 
successfully carried out in the different wards of the stake. 
The summer of 1907 was given up to famous musicians and 
their works, and standard authors and their books: among 
these former were MacDowell, Puccini, with a study of Mad- 
am Butterfly; of the authors: Washington Irving, Whittier 
and Bryant. 

During the summer of 1908 Famous Men and Women of 
Today were taken up, among them being Jane Addams with 


the Hull House developments Thomas Edison and his mir- 
acle-working life. The summer of 1909 was devoted to a 
short study of the History and People of Foreign Nations. 
The summer course of 1910, planned in connection with Og- 
den and North Weber stakes for the city wards, is to consist 
of practical lessons in physical education and elocution given in 
the Weber Stake Academy by Prof . E. J .Milne and his wife, An- 
nie Spencer Milne. These will prove of infinite value to those 
ever-studious and thoughtful girls; but the country wards 
will have their work carried by extension courses to their 
places of gathering, as the constant ideal set for these Weber 
M.I. officers is to vitalize the farthest corners of their stakes 
with the same aims and inspiration which dominate the 
chief officials of the stake. 


North Weber is one of the newest stakes, but its intelli- 
gence and progressive powers are not to be considered in con- 
nection with its age. Organized at the time when the old 
Weber stake was divided, its boundaries were fixed as 
Twenty-fourth street in Ogden on the south, Washington 
avenue on the east and the Weber county line on the north 
and west. The North Weber stake Y. L. M. I. A. began its 
formal existence with the best of beginnings: the proposed 
officers were invited to meet in the office of the stake presi- 
dency, August 16th, 1908, and here a heart-to-heart conference 
was indulged in. The ideals set before the officers were met by 
their own generous desires to be worthy of the confidence 
placed in them. The officers chosen were Eliza F. McFar- 
land, president; Birde F, Wotherspoon and Olga M. Drumiler, 
counselors; Lillie A. Moyes, secretary and treasurer; Mary 
E. Nordquist, chorister; Nelly V. Bluth, organist. Later the 
following were added: Kate A. Tolhurst, librarian; Elsie 
Powell, Ruby Terry, Jennie V. Thomas, class leaders. On 
her removal from the stake, Counselor Wotherspoon was re- 
leased, Counselor Drumiler was promoted to be first, and 
Ruby Terry was sustained as second counselor. 

The work of this stake has been characterized by a spirit 
of union and affection. The officers have endeared them- 



selves to the members; especially is this true in the case of 
President McFarland. The work done is very similar in 
scope and purpose to that of the adjacent stakes Ogden and 

The summer course for 1909 consisted of a series of les- 
sons in Domestic Science and Art, interspersed with literary 
gems and musical selections. These lessons were presented 
at the regular weekly meeting's, except in the case of the 
fast meeting of each month, which was reserved for 
testimony bearing, and one other evening used for amuse- 
ments, festivals, etc. Meetings were held conjointly with 

the Y. M. M. I. A. on the 
first Sunday evening of each 
month, the programs consist- 
ing of music, literature, relig- 
ious and current topics, with 
I occasional addresses by in- 

vited guests. Articles made 
by the domestic art classes 
were contributed toward a 
bazaar which was held at the 
close of the course, and the 
funds thus secured were used 
by the associations for books. 
The work was very success- 
ful and held the members 
together in good working 
order for the fall season. 

For the summer of 1910, 
these officers have taken a 
very active interest, helping 
to plan the course in physical 
culture and elocution, which 
is to be given the Y. L. M. I. 

A of the city wards in Ogden, Weber and North Weber 
stakes. Prof. E. J. Milne, as instructor in physical culture, 
will give short talks on the importance of exercise, the rela- 
tion of body and mind, breathing, sleeping, bathing, and 
how to exercise; along with practical work in Swedish move- 
ments, Delsarte, dancing and other work which requires but 
little apparatus. Sister Milne's work will consist of lessons 



in voice culture, including- breathing- exercises, pronuncia- 
tion and articulation. On arriving- at the academy building 
the members of each stake will proceed to their stake room 
where prayer will be offered, and any special instruction 
given, after which they will prepare for the class work, (all 
are to wear the regulation gymnasium costume) and march 
in order to the classes. The Junior girls of all three stakes 
will meet together for instruction, as will also the Senior 
members. Thirty minutes will be given for the work of each 

The subjects outlined for the country wards in North 
Weber consist of talks on historical and present topics of in- 
terest pertaining- to the leading cities of America with corre- 
sponding songs and literary gems for preliminary programs. 

In August, 1909 the conjoint boards of the Y. M. and Y. 
L. M. I. A. carried out an excursion to Ogden canyon which 
proved a success socially and financially and the proceeds 
went to the stake treasury for expenses. 

Weekly stake board meetings are held every Thursday 
evening- in conjunction with the stake presidency, high 
council, and other stake officers, all meeting together for 
opening exercises after which each quorum or board goes to 
its own room for individual consideration of its work. 

The board is divided into three committees, one each on 
class work, music, and amusements. 

Monthly meetings are held for the instruction of local 
officers. The lessons are here presented and studied, especial 
emphasis being placed on the truths applicable to the daily 

At date this stake has twelve local associations with 366 
regular members and nine stake board officers. 

The ringing motto of North Weber stake board deserves 
special mention: " Ten Enrolled, Ten Present." 


The Woodruff stake is a very scattered one; it is located 
in four counties, two of which, Uinta and Sweetwater, are 
in the state of Wyoming and two, Rich and part of Uintah, 
are in the northeastern part of Utah . It requires two weeks 
steady traveling to cover the whole stake, and but a very 



little part of the five hundred miles can be done by rail. 
It is mostly a desolate, sagebrush covered country, with roll- 
ing- hills and few fertile spots. The route would take the 
traveler over much of the old "Emigrant Mormon Trail," 
and would show what difficulties were surmounted by those 
early travelers into the unknown west. This stake con- 
tains many mining camps, the famous Rock Springs coal 
mines being among them. The people move from one carnp 
to another very often, and the conditions are hard; it is there- 

Couns. Mary K. Dawson. Prest. Laura H. Burden. Conns. Kliza F. McFarland. Sec. Alice Duncombe. 

fore difficult to achieve anything like success in carrying 
forward educational or social movements. Many grazing 
lands are to be found in the hills, and those who are not min- 
ers are generally stock raisers. Thus the girls who have 
tried their conscientious best to keep alive the spirit of Mu- 
tual Improvement work have many obstacles to overcome. 
When one contemplates such efforts, the thought comes 
not how little has been done but how grateful is that little 
to those who are thus benefited. The present stake presi- 


dent of the Y. L. M. I. A. is a progressive and aggressive 
young woman, with plenty of determination to do the best 
that in her lies, and this courage and zeal makes for right- 
eousness among the daughters of Zion in this scattered sec- 

Ten associations have been organized, and a number of 
them are situated in the floating population of the mining 
camps. But these camps need them quite as much as 
any place on earth; so blessed be the strngglers in the Mu- 
tual cause in Woodruff stake. 

The Y. L. M. I. A. of the Woodruff stake was organ- 
ized June 6th, 1898, with Alice Burton, president; Minnie M. 
Bowns and Katharine Whittle, counselors; Lillie Bell, secre- 
tary; Tena Cox, treasurer. 

June 22, 1901, the association was reorganized with the 
following stake board: Laura H. Burdett, president; Eliza 
McFarland, Mary K. Dawson, counselors; Alice Duncombe, 
secretary and treasurer. 

In addition to the sisters already named, the following 
have acted in the capacities named: counselors Daisy Dun- 
combe, Eliza Spence, Carolina Mills, Elizabeth Edwards; 
secretaries Josephine Murphy, Charlotte Sims, Bertha Park- 
inson, Lillian Cook; treasurer and chorister Lottie Lusty; 
aids Birdie McKinnon, Retta Blackner, Annie Goodman, 
Augusta Youngberg, Birdie Larson, Mary F. Shellby. 


Yellowstone is one of the newest of the stakes . This thriv- 
ing Idaho center has already nine associations within its bor- 
ders. The district was cut off from the old Fremont stake, 
and comprises those towns and villages lying nearest to the 
route to the famous National Park after which it was named. 

The villages are nearly all reached by the railroad or 
are in easy distance. It is a land of deep winter snow and 
rich summer grain, and is remembered as the vicinity in 
which the scenes of the famous modern novel The Virgin- 
ian were located. 

The stake board of the Y. L. M. I. A. was organized at 
Parker on January 10, 1909. The following officers were 
chosen: president Effie S. Miller; counselors Mae Cameron, 



Grace Z.Robertson; secretary Azalia Mason. The aids were: 

Alta Kerr and Lucy Salis- 
bury. One change has been 
made: Azalia Mason was 
released on Feb. 12, 1910, 
to take the position of a 
ward president, and Alta 
Kerr was chosen to fill the 
vacant place. The officers 
have not yet attempted any 
original summer work, con- 
tenting- themselves with 
putting all their efforts into 
establishing the regular 
winter courses outlined by 
the General Board. Thus 
they may be left to work 
out in modest ways their 
own Mutual salvation, 
quite certain of success 
and prosperity in their ap- 
pointed labors. 

It is fitting that we 
should close with the history 
of one of our newest stakes. 
It typifies our growth; for into the web and woof of Mormon- 
ism are woven the bright threads of progress and develop- 



Branches of the Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement 
Association have been organized from time to time in 
Great Britain, Scandinavia, Australia, Japan, Samoa, the 
Sandwich Islands, and all of the large cities of the United 
States where there are headquarters of the Church missions. 
But these have necessarily been connected closely with the 
Young Men' s Association . The work done is largely of a social 
or of a proselyting character. But wherever the organiza- 
tion may be, all partake of the good spirit, which is the same 
under every sky and in each human heart .