Keepapitchinin, the Mormon History blog » A Few Minutes in the Brooklyn Relief Society, 1900

A Few Minutes in the Brooklyn Relief Society, 1900

By: Ardis E. Parshall - April 29, 2013

6 May 1900

After the regular afternoon meeting held at the Amphion Hall in Brooklyn the ladies of the church and congregation met with President Howard Garrett and Elder W.J. Snow to organize a “Ladies Relief Society.”

Meeting opened with prayer by Elder Snow.

President Garrett then proposed the following names for office.

President — Mrs. E. Milligan
1st Counselor – Miss S. McKenna
2nd counsellor – Mrs C. Laine
Secretary – Miss B. Shaffer
Treasurer – Miss B. Shaffer

Every lady accepted position assigned her promising to do her best for the advancement of the society. They were supported by all present.

Eleven (11) names were given for membership. President Garrett then declared that a “Ladies Relief Society” was duly organized in the Brooklyn Conference.

After prayer by Elder Whiting the meeting adjourned.

12 May 1900

The Ladies Relief society held its first meeting at 50 Concord St. Bklyn. Elder W.J. Snow was present as a guest. Ten members were present. Meeting opened with prayer by Elder W.J. Snow.

President Sr Milligan made a few remarks in reference to the work to be accomplished And made a suggestion that an initiation fee and a monthly due be paid. Motion was made by Sister R. Easton – seconded by Sister McKenna that 25 cts be paid for fee and ten (10) cents for monthly dues. Carried.

Motion made by Sr C. Laine – seconded by Sr. M. Larson that society meet every two weeks. One meeting to be a regular business meeting. The other to take a social form when friends could be invited. Carried.

Motion made by Sr McKenna seconded by Sr C. Laine that the President buy material for a quilt to be sold proceeds used for the benefit of the society. Carried.

Motion made by secretary – seconded by Sr C. Laine that she be furnished with postals to correspond with society when necessary. Carried.

Motion made by Sister McKenna, seconded by Sr. C. Laine that fifty (50) cts be used for postals. Carried.

After prayer by secretary meeting adjourned.

26 May 1900

The regular business meeting of the Ladies Relief Society was held at the head-quarters #50 Concord st Brooklyn

President E.H. Snow and Elder Whitehead were present as guests.

Meeting opened with prayer by President E.H. Snow

Roll call seven (7) members present. Minutes of May 12 meeting read and accepted.

Motion made by Sr M. Menninger that the office of Secretary and Treasurer be consolidated into one – seconded by Sr M. Larson – carried

President Sr Milligan suggested the name of Sr Menninger as assistant to Secretary and Treasurer. Sr Menninger was supported by all present and was declared elected.


Sister Agnes Rose Lane’s name was proposed for membership by the president Sr Milligan – and she was unani[m]ously accepted as a member.

It was decided to hold an extra meeting Saturday evening June 2nd at the home of sister Agnes R. Lane to devise ways and means to raise money for the progress of society.

No further [business] being suggested motion was made by secretary and seconded by Sr C. Laine to adjourn – carried.

Benediction by Elder Whitehead

2 June 1900

The Ladies Relief society held an extra meeting at the home of Sister Agnes R. Lane

Meeting opened with singing of hymn and prayer by Sister C. Laine.

Roll call and reading of minutes was dispensed with.

Seven (7) were present and different suggestions were made for the good of the society – It was decided to give a social time to be voted upon at the next regular (June 9th) business meeting.

Benediction by Sr A.R. Lane

9 June 1900

The regular business meeting of the Ladies Relief Society met at head-quarters 50 Concord st Bklyn.

President Smart presided as guest.

Meeting opened with singing of hymn and prayer by Pres. Smart.

Roll call. Seven (7) members present.

Minutes of May 26th meeting read and accepted.

Under the head of new business it was suggested by Sr. A.R. Lane that society give a social time. Motion made by Sr C. Laine – seconded by secretary to accept Sr Lanes suggestion. Carried.

After a short talk June 27th was fixed upon as date for social

Meeting was closed with benediction by Sister A.R. Lane.



  1. Oh how nice; I’d forgotten Catherine Garber Laine. Thanks for the link to her story.

    Comment by Amy T — April 29, 2013 @ 8:17 am

  2. I have found photographs of both the Amphion Theatre and 50 Concord Street–but I can’t send them until I get access to a flatbed scanner. Neither building is standing anymore.

    The Amphion opened in 1888, could seat 1700, and had a roller-coaster run for about 40 years–from legitimate theater to “variety” to musical comedy and melodrama, and then on to vaudeville and “pictures” and Yiddish theater. In 1941, having been dark for nearly a decade, the building was condemned and taken down by WPA labor. A small city playground is now on the site.

    The building at 50 Concord Street may not have survived long after the opening of the Manhattan Bridge in 1910–it’s right between the approaches to the Manhattan and Brooklyn Bridges, and that area has been developed and re-developed extensively in the past century.

    Comment by Mark B. — April 29, 2013 @ 8:58 am

  3. Was the 50 Concord Street address Sis. Laine’s boarding house, or the mission headquarters in Brooklyn. I recall something about the mission headquarters in Brooklyn from the B. H. Roberts biographies.

    And, based on the other post about Sister Laine, we can assume that President Milligan was the actress mentioned there?

    Comment by kevinf — April 29, 2013 @ 10:29 am

  4. The mission offices during B.H. Roberts’s tenure (beginning 1922) as mission president were on Gates Avenue, about 2.5 miles south and east of 50 Concord Street. I’d have to do some digging to find where the mission headquarters were before then.

    Comment by Mark B. — April 29, 2013 @ 10:44 am

  5. I haven’t seen any reference to Sister Milligan beyond these minutes — she was unknown to me when I wrote about Sister Laine years ago. Agnes Rose Laine was an actress, though.

    The “Sister R. Easton” mentioned is Mrs. Robert C. Easton — Jennetta Young Easton — a daughter of Brigham Young. The others I don’t know.

    Here’s a bit from one of Jenetta Young Easton’s letters to the Deseret News, from 1902, that could help with the identification of mission headquarters:

    No. 50 Concord street, Brooklyn, for years the Church headquarters, is now a thing of the past, and we all say, hurrah! The New York colony is rejoicing accordingly. Prest. McQuarrie decided some time ago that Brooklyn had seen the last of our headquarters. It is a great many years since our office was first established there, first in Sand street and then in Concord. Elders William C. Staines, James Hart, Pingree and Samuel Richards, each in turn had their offices in Brooklyn. The new quarters are at No. 172 West Eighty-first street, between Columbus and Amsterdam avenues, and are in every way more in keeping, and better adapted to the requirements of the mission than any place yet occupied by them. It is a change that has been long looked and hoped for by every one, and the presidency is to be congratulated on its consummation.

    My reference in the old Catherine Laine article to her boarding house being the early meeting hall was based on remarks in other letters by JYE — but it was *a* but not *the* first area meeting place, depending on what you mark as the beginning of the “modern era.” Kent Larson’s Mormons in New York City blog has material about 19th century Mormon gathering places in Brooklyn and Manhattan.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — April 29, 2013 @ 10:53 am

  6. Both elders and sisters praying! Scandal!

    Comment by David Y. — April 29, 2013 @ 11:05 am

  7. Poor Sister Jenette Young Easton! Like so many of her modern “descendants” in this fair city, she believed that abandoning Brooklyn, the very center of the universe, for the fleshpots of Manhattan, was cause for rejoicing!

    But I suspect that she may be right about the Upper West Side of Manhattan being better situated for the “requirements of the mission.

    Comment by Mark B. — April 29, 2013 @ 11:17 am

  8. Mark, Brooklyn has a rival for the center of the universe, with the Fremont neighborhood of Seattle making the same claim. Does Brooklyn have its own statue of Lenin, imported after the collapse of the Soviet Union? Nude bicycle races for the summer solstice parade?

    I didn’t think so.

    Comment by kevinf — April 29, 2013 @ 11:22 am

  9. Hey, we do have the annual Mermaid Parade in Coney Island to mark the start of summer. No Lenin statues that I know of, but lots of old Communists.

    Comment by Mark B. — April 29, 2013 @ 12:04 pm

  10. Jeff Johnson corrected me privately on the spelling of JEANETTA Young Easton’s name.

    Also, if you were to look for her newsy letters to the Deseret News 1901-1916, you would find them under the heading of “Salt Lakers in Gotham,” under the pen name “Janet.” But don’t look for them there. If you think she might have mentioned someone you care about, let me search my transcription of her columns (all 2,000 pages of them).

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — April 30, 2013 @ 6:24 am

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