The Martyrdom & the Quorum of the Twelve

Three months before the martyrdom of the prophet  joseph smith and his brother Hyrum, Orson Hyde wrote: Before I went east on the 4th of April [1844] last, we were in council with Brother Joseph almost every day for weeks; said Brother Joseph in one of those councils, “There is something going to happen; I […]

Wasatch Tabernacle, Heber City

A version of this article originally appeared in Vol.53, No.1 (2006) of Pioneer Magazine. In 1859, a group of families from Provo, Utah, moved to Wasatch County and founded Heber City. President Heber C. Kimball was honored with the name of the small community. The Wasatch Stake Tabernacle was built in Heber City between 1887 […]

Chatburn, England

The article previously appeared in Pioneer Magazine, 2010 Vol.57 No.3 In both of Heber C. Kimball’s missions to england he served in the ribble valley near Preston, Lancashire. In that region are some quaint little villages, including chatburn and downham. This is an area of stunning beauty. At that time, locals felt that residents of […]

James Smithies Home

This article originally appeared in Pioneer Magazine, 2010 Vol.57 No.3 This home near bashall eaves (Barshe Lees) was once owned by James and Nancy Smithies. They were two of the earliest converts to the LDS church in england. The Smithies home was a center of religious activity for the Church.  There were conferences, ordinations, and […]

Kimball – Whitney Cemetery

1/2 Block North of Temple Square, Just East of Conference Center, Salt Lake City A little over a week after arriving in the Salt Lake Valley, Church leaders were allotted property by President brigham young. Heber C. Kimball chose this block to the northeast of Temple Square. Newel K. Whitney claimed an adjacent property immediately […]

Downham, England

downham is also a village of charm and historical significance to the Latter-day Saints. This quaint site has seemingly experienced little change as time has passed. In the ribble valley near Preston, Lancashire, england, Elder Heber C. Kimball experienced remarkable success as a missionary during his first mission in this general area in 1837–38. He […]

Barnoldswick, England

In early 1838 as their mission to Great britain was drawing to a close, Elders Heber C. Kimball and orson hyde resolved to organize and strengthen the branches they had already established so that those branches might thrive once the missionaries had departed for home. As they did so, word came that they were wanted […]

St. Wilfred Street

This article originally appeared in Pioneer Magazine, 2010 Vol.57 No.3 In 1837, Elders Heber C. Kimball, orson hyde, and others began work as the first missionaries of the LDS church in the british isles. Their first field of labor was in Preston, Lancashire, england. Their lodging quarters were in a building located on the corner […]

Joseph, Not Brigham, Planned Exodus

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text] [This article originally appeared in the Mar/Apr 1970 issue of Pioneer Magazine.] RECENTLY published magazine article on the great exodus of the Mormon Pioneers, credited the whole idea to brigham young, the master colonizer who moved the entire body of the “Saints” to the heart of the Great Basin.  This is in error. It […]

TWITCHELL, Ephraim & Phoebe Melissa Knight

One day Branch President Ephraim Twitchell was traveling from Sacramento a long way by wagon. The last day of his journey he was traveling late, after dark. He did not stop because he was almost home. He was alone in his wagon, when suddenly there was a man sitting beside him on the spring seat. He just appeared from nowhere. He told Ephraim that he should take his family from San Juan Bautista and go to San Bernardino. Ephraim responded that they had not been in San Juan very long and that his children had their friends there. He noted that he did not think he could get them to go with him. The man beside him replied, "Yes, you can, and you must go to San Bernardino or you will lose them." When Ephraim turned to answer him he was not there. He had disappeared just as he had appeared -it seemed like just out of thin air. Ephraim knew the gospel very well and remembered their story in the Book of Mormon about the three Nephites. He thought this must be the answer-the messenger was one of the three Nephites. He then saw a beautiful new coat that the messenger had left on the spring-seat beside him. He thought the messenger had really been there-that he had not just imagined or fantasized. Ephraim went home and told his wife, Melissa. They talked about the move. They prayed about it for a couple of days. They knew they must go to San Bernardino, California. Every one of their children and one nephew, John Newton Twitchell, the oldest son of Jasper Twitchell went with them. Anciel Ephraim's oldest son came a year later.


This article originally appeared in Vol.65, No.2 (2018) of Pioneer Magazine. by Royce Allen In late August 1847 when Jesse C. little and his five companions met with brigham young to describe their circuit of .what would become Utah’s Davis and Cache Counties, they made particular mention of a beautiful swath of land a half-day’s […]

The Early Years of Davis County

This article originally appeared in Vol.65, No.2 (2018) of Pioneer Magazine. by Glen M. Leonard One of Brigham Young’s first actions upon arriving in the Valley of the Great Salt Lake was to send out exploring expeditions to the north, south, and west to assess regional potential for settlement. On August 9, 1847, Jesse C. […]

WHITNEY, Orson Ferguson

By John Nicholson From Whitney’s History of Utah, Vol. 4 BISHOP ORSON F. WHITNEY, author of WHITNEY’S HISTORY OF UTAH. was born at Salt Lake City, Sunday, July 1st, 1855. His father, Horace K. Whitney, was a pioneer of 1847, and the eldest son of Newel K. Whitney, who died Presiding Bishop of the Church […]

GIBSON, Henry Eliot

from Whitney’s History of Utah Vol. 4 A native of New York State, born in the town and county of Otsego, January 14, 1827, and a corner to Salt Lake Valley in the fall of 1848, Mr. Gibson is at present a prosperous and respected citizen of Davis County. He was one of the earliest […]

GIFFORD, Ursula Curtis Durfee

URSULA CURTIS DURFEE GIFFORD is from a righteous line. Her father preached the first sermon that brigham young ever heard and he was instrumental in this great Church leader’s conversion. Ursula’s second husband’s father (alpheus gifford) was also present during this missionary trip along with her Uncle elial strong and a couple other brethren. Heber […]

SMITH, Mary Ann

I was born in Nauvoo, Hancock County, Illinois, May 14, 1841, the youngest daughter of hyrum smith, Patriarch, who was martyred in Carthage Jail. I am the only sister to joseph fielding smith; we are the only two children of mary fielding, second wife of Hyrum Smith, my father. I was three years old when […]

“Original Gristmill Stones” Monument

This article originally appeared in the July/Aug 1990 issue of Pioneer Magazine south davis chapter DEDICATES “ORIGINAL GRISTMILL STONES” MONUMENT On June 2, 1990 the South Davis Chapter of the sons of utah pioneers held their dedication of the “Original Gristmill Stones” monument. V. Vee Reynolds, President of South Davis Chapter officiated. President Reynolds welcomed […]


He discovered that the Mormons were a religious people, however, at that time he cared nothing for religion. “The Methodists and the Presbyterians had been trying to convert me to their faith. I came to the conclusion that religion of every kind was a hoax, and that none was right, and that all preachers of religion were hypocrites, and were preaching for money and popularity.”

PARKER, John Jr.

John Parker Jr., was born February 14, 1812 in Chaigley, Lancashire, england, the sixth of ten children.  As members of the Anglican Church, the Parker family attended regularly; John Parker, Sr. led the choir and several of the children sang in it. In his early years John, Jr. herded cattle and sheep and rented a […]

WATT, George D.

This article originally appeared in Pioneer Magazine, 2010 Vol.57 No.3 On Saturday evening, July 29, the Mormon missionaries agreed to baptize 15 of the eager investigators the following morning in the River Ribble. Heber C. Kimball estimated that between seven and nine thousand people were sitting and standing on the bank, watching the open-air baptisms. […]

RICHARDS, Jennetta

This biography originally appeared in Pioneer Magazine, 2010 Vol.57 No.3 by S. Faux Jennetta was born on August 21, 1817, in Lancashire, england, to Reverend John and Ellen Richards. In 1837 Jennetta’s family was living in walkerfold, England, where her father was a Protestant minister. On Wednesday, August 2nd of that year, she was paying […]