Keepapitchinin, the Mormon History blog » Latter-day Saint Images, 1915

Latter-day Saint Images, 1915

By: Ardis E. Parshall - October 01, 2009

Halifax, England, Local Priesthood Holders
(no elders “from Zion” in this picture)

Beehive Girls of Thatcher, Arizona


Missionaries at York, England


Choir of Rotterdam, Netherlands


Beehive Girls of Hyrum Third Ward, Utah


Richmond, Utah
Deacons’ Orchestra


Moreland, Idaho, MIA baseball team


Beehive Girls of Thatcher, Arizona


Salt Lake City 20th Ward, Junior Boys MIA Chorus


Beehive Float in Pioneer Day Parade, Salt Lake City


Girls’ Chorus, Timpanogos Ward, Utah State


Primary, Pleasant Green, Utah


LaGrande, Oregon, basketball team


Timpanogos Ward, Utah, Girls’ Chorus


Takaroa (Tuomatu Islands)


YLMIA General Board


Huntsville, Utah, basketball team


Beehive Girls, 20th Ward, Salt Lake City


Berlin, Germany
Sunday School Faculty


Berlin, Germany
Sunday School


Troop 3, Ogden 9th Ward, MIA Scouts


Scouts, St. Johns, Arizona


Beehive Girls, 20th Ward, Salt Lake City


Beehive Girl Breakfast, St. George, Utah


Riverside Ward, Blackfoot Stake, Idaho, Primary

Rochdale, England
Relief Society and priesthood leaders organizing a proto-Relief Society bazaar


Beehive Girls, Henefer, Utah


Tauaiti Royal, student at the Maori Agricultural College, New Zealand
He made this chair and donated it to a war relief sale, where it netted 18 pounds ($86.40 in 1915 U.S. dollars)


Beehive Girls, Aurora, Utah



  1. Lovely collection, as always. I don’t recognize anyone in the St Johns picture, but seeing the Lombardy poplars in the photo reminds me of the lovely little essay by Wallace Stegner about Mormon Trees.

    Comment by Researcher — October 1, 2009 @ 7:55 am

  2. Thanks for the link to the Stegner essay. I enjoyed that.

    Yes, thanks for the lovely photos, as always. My wife’s family inhabited Moreland, Idaho for a time — I will try and figure out if my in-laws recognize any of these faces.

    Comment by Hunter — October 1, 2009 @ 8:02 am

  3. hooboy, i’m glad i didn’t live in berlin then. those teachers look scary!

    does anyone know the state of photography in this era? i know at some point the dour expressions were because the subjects had to sit still for quite a long time. that seems to have changed by 1915. and i’m sure photographs had to be expensive compared to now.

    Comment by ellen — October 1, 2009 @ 9:55 am

  4. Kodak had come out with its folding Brownie camera (1907-ish?) which made photography easily and relatively cheaply available to the masses (I have my grandmother’s, used to take hundreds of the family snaps in my collection from the 19-teens and ’20s). That kind of progress probably accounts for the more casual pictures, like the St. George girls cooking their breakfast and maybe the smiles of the 20th ward girls.

    I’m guessing that rather than the state of the technology, it was cultural issues that account for the expressions in some pictures. I mean, until fairly recently (recent to 1915), if any of them had had their pictures made it would have been a stiff, formal thing, not something that was done as often as we’re used to. They’re all posed formally and solemnly, aren’t they? I’m guessing that accounts for the solemn looks more than the film exposure time, which was quite brief by this date.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — October 1, 2009 @ 10:04 am

  5. What’s with the dudes raising their right arms (to the square?) in that photo from Henefer, Utah?

    Comment by Hunter — October 1, 2009 @ 10:42 am

  6. Why do some of the missionaries look so comically small? Is it just a perspective issue, or was there that much difference in size?

    Comment by kew — October 1, 2009 @ 10:46 am

  7. I hope they’re just waving in Henefer. Otherwise I’m clueless. And I don’t know the story behind the missionary picture, either, but am guessing that they did line up according to size precisely because their sizes *were* so different — the bicycles all look the same, and the point at which the top of his tire hit the tallest elder is very different from where it hits the shortest elder. I don’t think it’s just perspective.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — October 1, 2009 @ 10:55 am

  8. The Italian Fascist Party didn’t adopt their salute until 1919 and the Nazi Party appropriated the symbol, using it sporadically beginning in 1923 and making its use mandatory in 1926. In 1915, Europe was in the middle of war, and both Hitler and Mussolini were enlisted men in their nation’s armies. (Well, Hitler was actually an Austrian, and didn’t become a German citizen until 1932.)

    At any rate, I think we can rest assured that whatever the Henefer brethren were doing it doesn’t have those odious connections.

    Comment by Mark B. — October 1, 2009 @ 12:11 pm

  9. And, by the way, thanks for another fine set of photographs. I just wish they were bigger, clearer, and there were more of them, with names of all the people in them, and that my eyes were better.

    Comment by Mark B. — October 1, 2009 @ 12:13 pm

  10. Well, that settles it. Mormons have always been funny-looking.

    Who was it that stood at the pulpit and announced “If you ever doubted God has a sense of humor, you’ve never seen what I see now”?

    Comment by Martin — October 1, 2009 @ 1:14 pm

  11. Thanks for these. The photos of the Girls’ Choruses help me visualize the young women who submitted queries to the “I have a question” posts.

    Comment by Clark — October 1, 2009 @ 2:23 pm

  12. The one guy holding up his arm appears to be the only person smiling. It makes on wonder if he and the other guy are actually up to no good.

    Comment by Ian Cook — October 1, 2009 @ 2:39 pm

  13. RE: #10, “Mormons have always been funny-looking.” So can someone recommend a barber who can make my hair look like the guy in that LaGrand, Oregon basketball team, viewer’s left end of the back row?

    Comment by Rick Grunder — October 1, 2009 @ 11:43 pm

  14. That’s the very gentleman I suspected Martin had in mind. But alas, Rick, I fear ‘dos like that are born, not made.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — October 2, 2009 @ 7:49 am

  15. The photo of the missionaries in York reminds me of the photo of missionary companions found here.

    (I’m joking.)

    Comment by Justin — October 2, 2009 @ 3:18 pm

  16. Oh. My. Goodness.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — October 2, 2009 @ 3:45 pm

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