Keepapitchinin, the Mormon History blog

A Few Minutes in the North Weber Stake, 25 June 1916

By: Ardis E. Parshall - August 18, 2014

This is much longer than the usual “A Few Minutes” post – it is the record of a single day’s meetings kept by an extraordinary man. David W. Evans was clerk of the North Weber Stake for 47 years (1908-1955), and his minutes, always kept as beautifully as this set, are simply extraordinary. In the case of major speakers, such as Orson F. Whitney’s two addresses to the stake on this day, he captured their words in shorthand, then typed page after page of transcription into the stake minute book.

If you don’t have time to read the full set, I’d suggest you use your browser’s search function to search for the word “scholarship” to read Elder Whitney’s defense of culture and education in the Kingdom, or “Unitarian” to read about his encounter with a gentlemanly opponent, or “Adam fell that men might be” to read his defense of Adam and Eve. Or, leave a comment mentioning other bits you think other readers might enjoy.

Thirty-First Quarterly Stake Conference, June 25, 1916

The Thirty-first Quarterly Stake Conference of the North Weber Stake of Zion convened in the Ogden tabernacle Sunday, June 25, 1916, meetings being held at 10 A.M. and 2 P.M. There were present of the General Authorities, Elder Orson F. Whitney, of the quorum of Twelve Apostles. Of the Stake Authorities: Each member of the Stake Presidency, the Stake Clerk, each member and alternate of the High Council, each officer of the High Priests quorum, 2 of the 3 patriarchs of the Stake, 35 of the 36 bishops and counselors, an 47 of the 54 auxiliary stake workers, a total of 110 out of 119 of these officers, or 92%, the 9 absentees being excused, 5 on account of sickness and 4 for other causes. There were also present counselor John Watson of the Weber Stake Presidency and, during the afternoon, patriarch George W. Larkin of the Weber Stake. The general attendance at the morning session was 1024, and during the afternoon, 1124.


Attention Sisters! This Document Intended for Male Eyes Only!

By: Ardis E. Parshall - August 17, 2014

I spotted this document left on a bench where the elders who pass the sacrament in our ward (we have no Aaronic Priesthood) had been sitting. Although I have suspected for decades that such documents exist and circulate within the quorums, this is the first time I have beheld such a thing with my natural eyes. Gaze upon it if you dare, sisters — this is a rare opportunity to peek behind the veil.

(Okay, I’m being silly. But brethren, can you understand why so many women have little understanding of the oath and covenant of the priesthood, or the nature of priesthood itself, when our only exposure to either doctrine or practice is as passive observers? when discussion of priesthood is generally limited to persuading us that we-do-but-we-don’t have a priesthood role? This document illustrates something you don’t give a second thought to, but which fascinated me by its novelty and practicality.)


In Our Ward: Lesson 31: “Happy is the Man That Findeth Wisdom”

By: Ardis E. Parshall - August 17, 2014

Lesson 31: “Happy is the Man That Findeth Wisdom”


Purpose: To inspire class members to be more Christlike by applying the wise counsel in the books of Proverbs and Ecclesiastes.

Scripture Discussion and Application

1. Wisdom
2. Trust in the Lord
3. The words we speak
4. Pride
5. Friendship
6. Raising children
7. Happiness and good humor


Andrew Sproul, Missionary: May 1842

By: Ardis E. Parshall - August 17, 2014

previous installment

Minutes of the Glasgow General Conference on the western branches, held in the trades hall, Paisley, on Sabbath, May 1, 1842, 10 o’clock morning.

It was moved and seconded Y& carried unanimously that Elder John McAulay pride over this conference & that Elder Wm. Gibson be Clerk, the meeting was then opened with singing & prayer after which Elder McAulay addressed the brethren & sisters present on the progress the work has made in Scotland, notwithstanding all the opposition the Priestcraft, Infidelity, and Falsehood of every kind could bring against it & that through the truth through the knowledge of which the Saints is rejoicing in the assurance of being the Sons & Daughters of the living God & of receiving their inheritance with their Lord & Savior Jesus Christ if they prove faithful to the end, while the sects & parties of the present day instead of filling the earth with the knowledge of the Lord have filled it with the doctrines of & commandments of men, each one starting up in opposition to the other & persecuting one another even to the death as each had the ascendency.


Saturday Remix, 1913

By: Ardis E. Parshall - August 16, 2014

Not in the Army After All

A Methodist exhorter shouted: “Come up and join the army of the Lord.”

“I did join,” replied one of the congregation.

“Where’d you join?” asked the exhorter.

“In the Baptist Church.”

“Why, child,” said the exhorter, “you ain’t in the army; you’re in the navy.”


“A” Is for Apron: part 3

By: Ardis E. Parshall - August 15, 2014

“A” Is for Apron

Previous episode

Part III

Ilene H. Kingsbury

Old apron woman! Do you have to always be seen in a style so old-fashioned that we smile as you walk by?

Yes, indeed! For then around my knees my children are still playing, my loving husband comes close to my side, old friends call my name.

And Clarissa mused on a night, half a century ago. Before a glowing pine-knot fire she waited with her husband for rescue in a long storm, early arrived on the summer range.


Donnie’s Day — August

By: Ardis E. Parshall - August 15, 2014

From the Children’s Friend, August 1944 –


History’s Newsroom: The Truth About “Immersing ‘Half-Nude Young Men and Women,’” 1924

By: Ardis E. Parshall - August 15, 2014

The title got you here, right? That is and always was the purpose of newspaper headlines. The following story describes an LDS baptismal service in Yorkshire, England, where – of course – there were no half-nude youths. I actually pulled it from a newspaper in Singapore, illustrating how far and wide news about Mormons tended to travel. Reports from French newspapers reached the most distant French islands in the Pacific; Mormon news from England shows up in Indian sources; Chinese newspapers picked up Mormon news from Japanese sources, which in turn had copied them from South African newspapers. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, at least, the world lurved talking about Mormons.

And sometimes, they got the story right!

15 January 1925, 4/


Baptisms at Public Baths.

Bradford, Nov. 23. [1924]

A revival Mormon activity in the West Riding has evoked much agitation here against Mormonism and its methods, one of the practices alleged against them being that of immersing “half-nude young men and women” in their “secret rites” of baptism. Yesterday afternoon, in the Feversham Street School baths, there was a Mormon baptism, and the service was decorous almost to the point of dreariness.


Doing Common Things in an Uncommon Way: Preliminary; Lesson I — Thinking

By: Ardis E. Parshall - August 14, 2014

It’s been quite a while since we looked at an old lesson series used in one of the auxiliaries. I like this one from 1922-23. It meshes quite well with the 21st century’s philosophy of “intentional living,” or being aware of everyday acts that are usually taken for granted, and directing those everyday acts into some pattern meant to improve ourselves and our world.

Doing Common Things in an Uncommon Way

A Study for the Advanced Senior Class, M.I.A., 1922-23

By George H. Brimhall, President Emeritus, Brigham Young University


Uncommon shall mean in this course out of the ordinary, higher and better than is usual, a mode of doing things on a plane to which the many have not arrived. It shall mean the excellence of action not yet reached by the mass or the popular majority.

The few are uncommon and the many common. In fact in each individual the uncommon qualities are not in the majority as to number but may be dominant because of their superior quality or uncommonnness. the uncommon feature of these lessons will be an attempt to do the uncommon thing of getting some common things considered from an uncommon point of view.


“A” Is for Apron: part 2

By: Ardis E. Parshall - August 13, 2014

“A” Is for Apron

Previous episode

Part II

Ilene H. Kingsbury

Old woman! Old woman! Old apron woman! Are you too tired to walk the streets today? Why are you rocking so calmly under your plum tree shade? Haven’t you noticed your chair sinking ever deeper into the grassy ground?

Clarissa’s eyes, half closed to the slanting, setting sun scarcely acknowledged the taunt of imprudent children. Old apron woman, indeed! This starched linen apron, crisp to a scratchy crackle; this crocheted insertion six inches deep; this long mantle of white was all she asked of heaven for adornment.

And why not? For on the day she turned eight she wore just such an apron over her best linsey-woolsey, and by midnight it was in rags, covered with printers’ ink! Only one corner was worth being cut off to make a small handkerchief.


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