Letters

Richard Neitzel Holzapfel and David M. Whitchurch, "Decade Introduction," in My Dear Sister: Letters Between Joseph F. Smith and His Sister Martha Ann Smith Harris, ed. Richard Neitzel Holzapfel and David M. Whitchurch (Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young University; Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2019), 467–513.

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

envelopeJoseph F. to Martha Ann, 19 September 1910 (envelope)

sep 19 page 1Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 19 September 1910 (p. 1)

sep page 2Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 19 September 1910 (p. 2)

Sept. 19, 1910.[1]

Martha Ann Harris,

214 So. 3rd. West St.,

Provo City, Utah.

My Dear Sister[2] Martha:

It has been some time since I heard from you or you from me. On the 4th. of July I started on a tour, in company with Bishop Nibley[3] and family,[4] in the hope that it would be beneficial to my health. We followed this delusive hope to New York, across the sea to Dover, England, and Antwerp, Belgium, thence to Holland, thence to Scandinavia through Germany and back to Germany again, thence to Switzerland and France and back again to England, the native land of our dear mother,[5] thence returning to New York and this city, arriving here[6] on September 3rd, two weeks ago last Saturday, during which time I have been confined to my bed with sciatic-rheumatism.[7] Many times during the past two weeks or more I have been wondering how it was with you and all your children and with our sister Jerusha[8] who I so seldom see;[9] so I thought I would just write you a line so say “Howdy” and express the wish that you may all be in the enjoyment of good health and still in the pursuit of happiness.

I was very much grieved on noticing in the paper [p. 2] the sad accident that happened to one of the employees a few days ago in the Startup Candy Factory.[10] I have not heard whether the accident terminated fatally or not but the unfortunate one, together with his family, have my sincerest sympathy. Brother John[11] has called regularly to see me since my return home and once laid his hands upon my head an blessed me for which I felt very thankful and from which I derived much comfort. My friends have been very kind to me by warding off, as far as possible, unpleasant duties and lightening my responsibilities as far as they possibly could. I am beginning to make some substantial improvement now and hope before a great while to be on my feet once more.

With love to all the children, I am,

Affectionately your brother,

Joseph F. Smith[12]

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

november 7 page 1Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 7 November 1910 (p. 1)

november 7 page 2Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 7 November 1910 (p. 2)

Salt Lake City, Utah—

Nov. 7th 1910[13]

Martha Ann Harris

214 South 3d West Street,

Provo City, Utah Co. Utah

My Dear Sister Martha:—

I hope you are well, and that you are having a good visit with Jerusha.[14]

I was sorry you went off so unceremoniously the last time you were here, or just after the close of conference;[15] I expected you to remain here another day or two at least, and was surprised to learn you had gone without even saying goodby.

I have no news to write. I am gaining a little, but very slowly, in strength. My trouble has by no means entirely left me. I am still lame.[16] I send you my cheque for $10.00—, which may come in handy for a few trifling things you may need.

Tomorrow will be a day of good fortune or of calamity and disaster for Utah, and especially for this city. If the Republican Party shall win—there will be prosperity and peace. Every democratic vote cast will be in favor of the so-called American Party—and against my friends![17] Affectionately your Brother. [p. 2]

Let no man decieve or wheedle[18] you or any body you can influence to the contrary—to vote for Tom Kearns’ party.[19] and the Salt Lake Tribune.[20] Every democratic vote cast in Utah will be in the interest—more or less of the bitterest foes of Utah and of the mormon people, in the combination known as “The American Party”. Any Republican who will desert his party at this election—in Utah—for any cause—I don’t care what it is, is either a traitor to his party or is sadly deceived or in error. If my party had faults I desired to amend or eradicate from it, I would not fly to my enemies to do it but would stay with my party and benefit it if I could.[21]

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

Dec. 24—1910[22]

Martha Ann Harris

214 South 3d West St. Provo City.

My Dear Sister Martha:—I certainly wish you a cheerful joyous Christmas and a happy, prosperous New Year and an endless succession of them.

I send you herewith my cheque No. 59—for $10.00 which I hope will bring you at least ten dollars worth of good.

Julina[23] is still suffering with rheumatism but keeps on her feet, and never stops from morning till night. Alice K.[24] is also troubled with rheumatism. I am some better. The rest of the folks are usually well. John is not well, Jerusha[25] is with him—We celebrated Uncle Joseph’s[26] birth day anniversary yesterday, and would have been glad if you had been with us[27]

I hear that Joseph Albert[28] is not much better in health. I hope he will soon be himself again. All send love. Affectionately your brother

Joseph F. Smith

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

Salt Lake City, Utah, Apr. 3d 1911[29]

Martha Ann Harris

Provo, Utah Co.

My Dear Sister Martha:—

I send you herewith my cheque for $20.00 which accept with my compliments and love.

Your letter of Feb. 26th came to me Feb. 28th. I have been so busy that I have neglected my correspondence. In fact I have no time for myself—nor for my family or friends.

I can only attend to my public duties imperfectly for the want of more time and strength and ability. My kindred will therefore not have much pleasure nor profit in me. I am grieved over Joseph’s condition.[30] We pray for him every day <at home,> and every week in the Temple[31]—and yesterday in our Fast meeting.[32] God only can give relief. Conference is on us.[33] We are all moderately well. With love, your brother Joseph F.

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

Beehive House[34]

Salt Lake City, Utah

May 14—1911

My Dear Sister—

Martha Ann.

We have not forgotten that you have reached your Seventieth mile stone on your life’s journey today.[35] And while we know you have been compelled to pass through many narrow places, and your path has been—all too—rough and thorney, yet we cannot fail to see the hand of Providence has not deserted you allways. Your life has been spared—your faith unimpaired, your hopes have not failed you, you have learned to kiss the hand that held the rod of your afflictions, and dealt out mercies in the hour of need, and to say from your heart “He doeth all things well”.[36]

You have had experience to prove that God is more kind and loving to ward His children than is Man. God does not err—nor fail but Man is full of weakness. I send you $20.00 for a little birth-day gift. Affectionately your brother Joseph [p. 2]

May 16th 1911

P.S. I got a card from cousin Josephine Fielding Heath,[37] from Smithfield, Cache Co.[38] last evening informing us that her daughter Seraph[39] died the day before, i.e. on Sunday the 14th inst. So you will see she died on your birth-day anniversary. Julina[40] had to go off somewhere to day with “Aunt Em”.[41] on mission work for the Relief Society[42]—so she is away from home.[43]

Josephines daughter will be burried to day, at Smithfield.

Our folks are all pretty well just now for which we are all very thankful.

Give our love to the girls and all friends, and reserve your share to yourself.

Affectionately your—brother

Joseph F.

N. B. We have just got word that Abraham Cannon’s son, now in Holland—or France died to day—of apendicitis.[44] This is sad news. I have been so busy I neglected to send this as I should.

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

may 29 page 1Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 29 May 1911, copy found in Joseph F.’s letterpress copybooks under that date.

May 29th 1911[45]

My Dear Sister Martha Ann:—

I got the sad word last evening thro’ Julina,[46] that Joseph Albert had passed over the dark river to the great majority beyond.[47]

While it is always sad and sorrowful to pass thro’ the gloomy shadows of the dark valley of death, there are some things much worse than death itself.

A living death is more to be dreaded than the final sleep, and rest from the fatal ills of mortality.

Joseph is all right now. He is beyond the power of death. Let me know what you need, and when the funeral will be—Ever—your Brother, Joseph F.

P.S. Julina and all the folks send you their love and sympathy in your hour of trial and sorrow. You must bravely sustain your trial—for Joseph is at rest, and is much better off than he has been for months, or possibly could have been if he had lived.[48]

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

Nov. 6th 1911[49]

Martha Ann Harris—

214 South 3d West St. Provo,

My Dear Sister Martha:—

I write to inform you that our brother, John, is in exceedingly bad health.[50] Last thursday he returned from a visit to Ray Davis,[51] up north with a severe cold, which immediately developed into pneumonia—or lung-fever. He has been confined to his bed, under the care of a trained nurse since last friday morning, without any symptoms so far as can be discerned, of improvement or relief. The general impression being, that he has steadily grown weaker.

The Doctor[52] gives no hope for his recovery, but we are all hoping and praying for his recovery.[53] His age is against us, and his heart seems very weak.

We will keep you posted by letter or phone as to his condition. I have a cold myself—but we are generally well. With love your brother

Joseph F.

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

envelopeJoseph F. to Martha Ann, 22 December 1911 (envelope)

Salt Lake City, U.T. Dec. 22d 1911[54]

Martha Ann Harris

Provo, Utah—

My Dear Sister Martha:—

I send you herein, my cheque for Ten—(10) dollars as a small remembrance of Christmas.[55]

I hope this will enable you to prepare a nice little christmas dinner for yourself and the two little grand children[56] who are keeping their Grand Mother Company in her widowhood.

We had a glorious meeting this morning[57] in the T. Annex[58] in honor of Uncle Joseph’s[59] birth-day anniversary, tomorrow.[60] I have written our poor, proud Cousin Ina[61] and sent her enough for her christmas dinner—Hoping you are well I am your bro. Joseph F.——.

Martha Ann to Joseph F.

RECEIVED

DEC29’11

PRESIDENT’S OFFICE[62]

Provo City December the

26 1911

Mr Joseph F Smith,

my dear beloved brother your favor containing the check for ten dolars came safly to hand yester day after noon & and a hankerchef & a poto of your self from Aunt Edna,[63] & cards from Rachel & Eadeth[64] & I thank you all very mutch I opreicate all more than words can express I was truly thankfull to you for the money it will help me thrue this cold weather after all you let me have while I was there the last time I did not expect any thing more I feal bad to think [p. 2] you have to do so mutch for me. Hyrum[65] sent me 50 dolars bless his dear good soal, but it took it all to pay for the pavement & for the taxes Franklin[66] wrote & told me he would try & send me enough to pay my taxes but I guess he has not been able to rais it yet I try & be as carefull as I can but there is a dream all the time for something I know I have to impose on you all the time. I am still very lame I have to limp round & do the best I can. my left hip pains me of nights so I can not [p. 3][67] rest mutch.[68] of nights now I know you have troubls enough of your own with <out> me bothering you with mine. I red of Aunt Marys[69] mother[70] pasing away in the paper it is few people that has no pain like she was that is not our lot ours is to suffer pain. She must have been a wonderfull women I know she will miss her so beeing right there with her so long dear little Royel[71] will miss her to bless his sweet dear little heart pleas give my love to Aunt [p. 4] Mary & tell her I would liked to have went to the funerel but I was not able to come even if I could have come. I never hird of her death untill she was buried. the girls are none of them very well Arte Sarah nor Jessie[72] Sarahs baby[73] has been very poorly with gathering in her head caused I guess fom cutting her teeth the children are home from scholl with me this week & I am glad to have thir help I am so lame pleas give my love to your folks the children [p. 5][74] joins me in love & thanks to you they think there is no one on irth like thir uncle Joseph. now my dear brother I sincerly thank you again, with all my heart, we had a little quiat dinner at home here yester day we were were invited out but I did not feel well enought to go your greatfull & affectionate sister Martha A Harris [p. 6]

I got a letter fom little Franklin the other day <they are in mexico> they were all well & the children were going to school & doing nicly[75]

P.S I am so glad you can help our poor misguided cousin Ina[76] would that she could see the right way be fore it is to late pleas excuse all mistakes it is so hard for me to write at best

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

Salt Lake City, Utah, June 22.d 1912[77]

Martha Ann S. Harris

Provo—Utah Co.

My Dear Sister Martha:—I have just written to Sister Jerusha.[78] She is a very sick woman.[79] I called on and blessed and prayed for her several weeks ago, while in Brigham City.[80] Since then I have written to her and received letters from Eli,[81] about her. She is not able to write, herself. I rec’d a letter from Eli this morning, he thinks his mother is a little better than she was, but is very weak. She has jaundis,[82] or the in action of the liver—and is exceedingly yellow, or dark.

She is having a long seige of it, and I hope she will pull through. My folks are all usually well. Aunt Sarah[83] is visiting with her sisters at Fielding—in Box Elder Co.[84]

I send you $500 which will not come amiss—

I hope you and the children are well.

Give my love to them all—in which all here joine. With love your brother, Joseph F.——

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

envelope frontenvelope backJoseph F. to Martha Ann, 20 August 1912 (envelope, front and back)

Salt Lake City, Utah, Aug. 20th 1912[85]

Martha Ann Harris

214 South 3d West St. Provo—

My Dear Sister Martha.

I hope these few lines will find you well and will remind you that you still have a brother in the “land of the living”.[86] I am pleased to say I am in usual health, and from day to day bent on the discharge of my duty to the best of my ability and understanding.[87]

I am delighted also to say that my family are enjoying their usual degrees of health and aptitude to make the most they can out of it. You know my family are workers. They spend no idle hours in gossip, and waste no precious moments in useless repining.[88] The Lord has been and is most merciful to me and mine.

We have with us Vonna Griffin, granddaughter of our deceased Sister Sarah.[89] She is earnest Griffin’s[90] daughter. She has a faint resemblance to her lamented Grand-Mother both in features and personal characteristics. A nice, quiet, easy-going girl. She is under the Doctor’s care for some kind [p. 2] of trouble with her eye-lids, and—of course—in the absence of her Uncle John,[91] and the non-existance of his home, she is staying with us.

Aunt Julina is overwhelmed with home—and Relief-Society duties and responsibilities.[92] She knows no rest except in the “wee-Smah”[93] hours of the night. But she is holding her own remarkably well. Aunt Alice K.[94] expects to start for Arazona tomorrow night on Y.L.M.I.A.[95] duties. She is the Treasurer of the General Board and also a member of it—and does her own house work, mending and making, cooking, washing and ironing. etc. etc. Aunt Edna is a Temple worker, and spends most of her time there. Our little Emma[96] keeps the home. Aunt Sarah not only has the watch-care of her home, but that of Darling Nonies[97] motherless children as well as Minervas[98] sweet little flock and Willards magnificent little Man.[99] Aunt Mary[100] and boys are running a 40 acre farm, at Taylorsville.[101] The home keeps itself just now. They have built a large Hay barn and stables; put up a hundred tons of hay—or less, and raised grain for their yearly keep. As for myself I continue at my daily grind in the Office.[102] I need say no more. I send you $10.00 with the love and best wish to yourself and all from your affectionate brother, Joseph F.——

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

Salt Lake City, Utah, Nov. 22d 1912[103]

Martha Ann S. Harris—

214 South 3d West St. Provo—

My Dear Sister Martha:—

A few days ago I received a letter from Cousin Ina,[104] acknowledging receipt of a coppy of the last Conference report which I sent her.[105] She desired to be remembered to you. She is in chronic ill-health, but has better eye sight than for some time past. My last letter from you was written Aug. 26th and came to me Aug. 28th last.

Julina[106] and I have hard colds—she is improving. I am in the progressive stage, each day it seemes a little worse. some people in my condition would be “Sick-a-bed and worse up”, but I have to “keep a digging”. “no rest for the wicked”![107]

I would like to know if the boys[108] have paid your taxes, and provided you with winter fuel? Please let me know. Next Thursday will be Thanks-giving day. I send you $10.00 which you will no doubt put to the best use for yourself,

With love to you and all, in which my folks joine, I am your affectionate Brother Joseph F.——

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

Salt Lake City, Utah, December 23rd, 1912.[109]

My dear sister, Martha Ann Harris:

214 So. Third West St., Provo.

I have just written to Ina,[110] from whom I received a letter on the 11th inst., in which she spoke of you as being somewhat unwise in helping to bear the burdens of others, having reference, of course, to the care you are taking of Lucy’s little children.[111] I have just been writing to her and have explained to her the situation. I have no idea that she would ever think of assuming such responsibilities as you willingly take upon yourself for the well-being of others. I am glad to say that the family are all usually well. I hope Willie[112] is better and that all the rest are in possession of good health. I sincerely wish you all the compliments of the season and take pleasure in enclosing herewith a small token of good feeling, which I hope will come in handy for your Christmas dinner. Give my love to the children, and try and take care of yourself.

Affectionately your brother,

Joseph F. Smith

P.S. I sent you a copy of the Christmas News[113]—which I hope you will look at. It is a big thing Also $10.00[114]

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

Salt Lake City, Utah, Feb—28th 1913[115]

Martha Ann Smith Harris

214 South 3d West St. Provo—

My Dear Sister Martha—

I hope this will find you all well, that William[116] is himself again, and that the rest of the children are happy and prosperous. We are all pretty well at present, for which we are most grateful.

Some of the grand children are troubled with colds, but, so far as we know, none of them, are in serious condition.

Your Cousin Ina “Coolbrith”— sends her love and sympathy to you, and hopes the grand-children you are raising will always remember with gratitude your services and sacrifices for them. I saw a notice in the News[117] that you had met with a loss by fire, but have heard nothing more about it.[118] I send you herewith my cheque No. 19. for $1900/100. (nineteen dollars.) as follows:—$900/100 from Julina[119] to pay for some work you did, and $1000/100 from your brother as a gift. Ever true, Joseph F. Smith

Martha Ann to Joseph F.

RECEIVED

MAR—6’13

PRESIDENT’S OFFICE[120]

Provo City March the 3ird 1913

My dear brother Joseph F Smith your very kind & welcome letter of the 25th of Feburry came safly to hand Saturday afternoon & my dear brother I cirtenly do opricate your kindness to me poor old cripled up woman that I am I dont know what ever I would do if it was not for my dear good noble grand dear beloved generous harted even more than I could ever expect & I feel in my heart to say God bless you for ever. for you have helped me to bare my burdons helped to lighten the load that has rested on me if it had not have been for you I surly would hav sunk under the load I feel truly greatfull to you mor than I can express. I feel greatfull to all those who have been kind to me thrue the sore tryals I have had to pass thrue.

you spoke of william[121] he is sill in a very bad condition yet after all he [p. 2] went thrue his piles[122] still bleeds & is very sore & he is not able to do hard work & I am afraid he will not be for some time Wilford[123] has sure <has> been a good boy to his parents this winter he has g<i>ven all this wages to them to help them william has not been able to irn any thing sence last June. the oldest girl Bessie[124] stayed home all winter to do the work for the family, untill a month ago then she she went out to work. there is another boy Ruel[125] 14 years old that will go to work as soon as he gets out of work <school> the others are, to lit[◊◊]le, to go out to work.[126] he <William>[127] has been suffering with the piles[128] of & on for 11 years working in the mines & shooing great big mules & horses has not helped it any. Atie has a very bad caugh her baby[129] has the ear ache. Sarahs babies has a fever coald & cough.[130] John F[131] has been down with lagripp[132] for nearly a week is some better can get round [p. 3][133] as they are. I hope Aunt Julina[134] will have a nice pleasent trip & return home in safety when you wrte to her pleas thank her for me for the money she sent the work is done I will send it to the girls I would like very mutch to come to conference[135] & hope my poor feeble body can make the riffle[136] with love & gratitude & thanking you again for your kindness I am your affectionate sister

Martha Ann Smith Harris

PS I forgot to tell you about the house burning down.[137] they said it was a defective chimny but it was not that. the people that lived in the house hung thair close round the stove to dry & got up in the morning & made <by> a fire & went in the other room & shut the dore the close caught fire & soon the house was in flames it was quite a loss to me for the rent was a help to me[138] Frank[139] sais he will build another house there as soon as he can he is coming home for conferance if he posabley can get off

[p. 4] PS[140]

pleas give my love to cousin Ina[141] & I know she will not under stand how I can take care of these children[142] I can do it becaus I loved thir mother mother she was true & faithfull to me. & the Sunday before she died she said to me if <I> knew my childrin would be taken care of as good as little Sarah[143] is being taken care of. I could die contented I told her if any thing ever hapened too her I would take just as good care of them & I did of her that is Zinas little girl that I raised on a bottle. that is I said if I am alive I have tryed to do it the best I could. but I little thought that in one week they they would be in my care. & with the help of the Lord for he sure has given me strength & for the assistence of my dear ones I have willed them thrue <this> far thrue I sincerly [p. 5] hope they will be greatfull <to> those who have imparted of thir substance & devided with us in our needs I know the Lord will reward them for all that that they have doun & I want them to aprciate thir goodness wheather they aprcate what I have done or not. I should have answerd sooner but some one coming in hinderd me all the time & I could not git it finnishe

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

Salt Lake City, Utah, June 18th 1913[144]

Martha Ann S. Harris

214 South 3d West St. Provo.

My Dear Sister Martha:—

I thought you would like to know that Julina[145] is 64 years old to day. She is in California[146] with Mamie and Donnie and their children,[147] and little Josephine, Joseph F., Junior’s daughter.[148] We are all as well as usual at home. My Daughter Emma[149] has been quite poorly for about a week, but is feeling some better now. Our Cousin Maggie Smith Parry,[150] died last night. She has been an invallid almost all her life, and her death is like a release from mortal ills. I wrote Cousin Ina[151]—a short time ago, in answer to a letter from her. and sent her $10.00 There is verry little difference in your—and her ages, both 72. She on the 10th of march and you on the 14th of may. I send you $1000 as a birth day reminder. Hoping you are will—I am your affectionate brother

Joseph F. Smith

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

Salt Lake City, Utah, Dec. 23d 1913[152]

Martha Ann Harris

214 South 3d West St. Provo.

My Dear Sister Martha:

I wish you the compliments of the Season, and the same to all the children and their little ones. I need not remind you that this the 108 Anniversary of the birth of Uncle Joseph[153]—The Prophet.

I have just written the Ina “Coolbrith”—and reminded her of it, but you will remember it without reminding. Aunt Edna[154] has been sick with ptomaine poisening,[155] for ten days.

The rest of the folks are well—as usual.

I have had a cold for two weeks, which has troubled me some—but I am getting better. Julina[156] and family are all usually well and all send love and Christmas greetings. The children are all looking forward for Christmas.

I send you here with $10.00 which will help get you a good Christmas dinner. Affectionately your brother Joseph F. Smith

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

Salt Lake City, Utah, June 24. 1914[157]

Martha Ann Harris—

Santa Monica, Cal.[158]

My Dear Sister Martha:—I sincerely hope you are enjoying your little visit down—from 4.300 feet[159] in the tops of the mountains, where you have so long existed, to the level of the great Pacific Ocean. The Ocean which I first saw in July 1854[160]—which is within a few days of 60 years ago. and across more than 2.000—miles of which I have sailed and steamed, back and forth 10 or 12 times—witnessing both its calms and its stormes, while you for the first time, now just gaze on its sunny shores, constantly washed by its restless waves. I want you to have a “good time”—while you are there—and hope you will stay as long as you desire. The folks are all well—and they also want you to have it as pleasant as possible. The weather is delightful here. All send love. Affectionately your brother

Joseph F. Smith

Martha Ann to Joseph F.

RECEIVED

JUL—9’14

PRESIDENT’S OFFICE[161]

Ans’d in person

July 23d 1914[162]

Provo City July 7th

1914

Mr Joseph F Smith my dear beloved brother I will try & write you a few lines this after noon, hoping they may find your dear ones all well I should have writen you before now but I have ben very mutch under thee weather sence I came here. I am hear at my daughter Arties[163] yet have not been home sence I came but I am gaining sloly now & hope to be able to go home perhaps tomorrow she has been very [p. 2] kind to me & done all she could to make me comfortable while I have been here I have sufferd quite a bit with my knee & other ailments that I have to contend with.[164] but I am very thankfull that I am as well as I am, at the present & hope & pray I may <still> be improving I got a pare of crutches & have yoused them some but I have been very week I could not get round mutch, I have been able to sow some. & done all I could & I am very glad I am as well as I am [p. 3][165] & that I can do a little now my dear brother I want to thank you all once more for the nice time I had in Calaforna[166] & for the money you gave me the day you fetched me home, & for bringing me home. I would have been in a fix if I had come in the cars & no one to help me in my weak condition thos chills up set me they were caused by the shock of fooling & I think I caugght some [p. 4] while travvling on the train & I am very glad you did not get hurt when you got your fall brother & sister Hodson[167] who is on your place wished that I would ask you to have him prayd for in the temple for for his afflicted leg so I have done so hoping that you in your multiplicty of labors will have this attended to if you cannot get time perhaps Aunt Edna[168] can do it. or—I mean, have it attended to. Sarah[169] is not over her trouble yet but is expecting every minute now I am very anxious about her & will [p. 5][170] bee thankfull when it is over. I got a letter from Franklin in new Mexico,[171] & they ware all well out there they are working very hard. & They sent thir love to us all & to all of our loved ones they felt very greatfull to you for what you have done for me. I will close for this time with prayrs in my heart, for <the> well being & saf<e>ty of you all I was sorry I had to bother you for an [p. 6] other book & I thank you for that also. I will keep you posted in regards to Sarah. If you should see Andrew[172] pleas giv my love to him & tell him I should like very mutch to have seen him before I come home. your affectionate sister M. A. Harris Arte joins me in sending love to you all.

P.S. I also thank you for the dear letter[173] you wrote me while I was <away> I cannot begin <to> tell you how mutch I enjoyd it every minute of the time

Martha Ann to Joseph F.

RECEIVED

JUL 10’14

PRESIDENT’S OFFICE[174]

Ans’d in person

July 23d 1914[175]

Provo City July the 9th

1914

Mr Joseph F Smith my dear <[illegible strike-through]> brother your letter of the 6th to hand was glad to hear you were all well but one I have not been able to make out who you sayd was not well I am not feeling as well as I would like but am thankfull I am no wors. the dolar came all right & thank you for sending it to me I did not want them to send it to me. but I can use it for something usefull to them when my poor lame, right arm gets [p. 2] so I can use it to work again. it is very lame in the sholder I must have strained it when I fell[176] we have had to work prtty lively with my kne. to<keep> it from blood poisening but I think we have got it over the worst of it now but my leg swells very bad yet. I have to yse the crutches to get round with for I cannot bare mutch waitt on it I got my money you sent all right & I thank you very mutch for the intres you took for me when I went away I told the post man to sen take my male to Artes[177] [p. 3][178] & that she would take care of it for me untill I came back I am still here at Arties she dont want me to go home untill I am able to get round & do my work Edna May[179] is working for Sarah[180] untill she gets a girl to work for her thare is one coming Sunday if nothing hapens to prevent it, & then I can have my girl home with me. I will send a parsel to Aunt Julina[181] to day & I hope she [p. 4] get it all right we had a nice rain here last night it will do lots of good to the crops. I just made out that Marys[182] is <is the one> who is sick I hope that it is nothng serious that ails her. Sarah is still very poorly & Aties children have colds Arte & the children all join me in sending love to you all your affectionate sister Martha A Harris

RECEIVED

JUL21’14

J. F. S.[183]

PRESIDENT’S OFFICE[184]

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

Salt Lake City, Utah, Sept. 10—1914[185]

My Dear Sister Martha:

Julina[186] sends you the enclosed Cheque for $1000 for work done.[187]

I received a letter from Cousin Adele,[188] from Reno,[189] Nevada, soon after she arrived there. That is her home for the present. They do not seem to have a permanent home, some times they live in Tonopah,[190] Nevada, sometimes at Berekley,[191] California. She sends her love to you and regrets she did not have a longer visit. While she writes very conservitively, she appears to have enjoyed—to some-extent her visit here. [p. 2] No doubt everything was not entirely to her taste and liking. but she says she has many things to think about in her quiet moments at home.

I have not the slightest idea that true religion—or the divinity of the mission of Joseph Smith, will make any lasting impression upon her mind. She is childless—duty-less—without human interest beyond herself and immediate relations—which are few—and with no great object in <this> life, or after it—and no zest for responsibility and an aim <only> only for social comforts—and temperal pleasures and enjoyments.

This is briefly my estimate of her—and yet I cannot but wish that that I have miss judged her.[192] We are all pretty well. Affectionately &c. Joseph F.

P.S. Wesley starts to night for Deseret,[193] and some time next week we may expect Emily and Marjorie will return home.[194] Love to the children

Affectionately your Brother.[195]

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

Feb—5th 1915[196]

Martha A. Harris

214 South 3d West St—

Provo—Utah Co.

My Dear Sister Martha.

I have just written to Bro. Henry Stringham,[197] Manager of the Knight Woollen Mills Company,[198] to furnish you, Edna May and Arthur,[199] each a Mackinaw coat.[200] at my expense.

All you will need to do, will be to call at the Factory, with the children and this letter, and select just what you want—and I want you to choose the very best. David A.[201] will be in Provo to morrow—and if time will permit, he will call on you.

Aunt Sarah[202] has been very sick but I am thankful that she is getting some better—otherwise we are all well and improving. Zina[203] is in the Hospital, and Franklin has just got out.[204] Your brother,

Joseph F. Smith

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

Salt Lake City, Utah, February 17th, 1915[205]

Mrs. Martha Ann Harris,[206]

214 So. Third West St.,

Provo.

My dear Sister:—

Your favor of the 10th inst. was duly received, and I have just received the bill for the coats, which seems evidence to me that you have duly received them. I hope you and the children will find them useful for all cold weather, and that the children’s are made large enough to last them more than the present season. The mackinaw was not intended to be a fashionable article of dress, but one of durability and warmth and withal not overly expensive.

I feel grateful on being able to say that Aunt Sarah[207] is slowly, but I think surely, improving in strength, and we sincerely hope that she will soon be herself again. Zina[208] is stopping with her mother[209] and seems to be recovering her strength right along, I suppose you know that her husband[210] started on a mission to the Southern States on the day that we brought her from the hospital. I am also pleased to say that Franklin seems to be getting along as well as could be expected.[211] His was a very serious and severe operation. The rest of the family are enjoying usual health, and hoping this will find you enjoying similar blessings, I am,

Affectionately your brother,

Joseph F. Smith[212]

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

Salt Lake City, Utah, July 15—1915[213]

Martha Ann Harris

214 South 3d West St—

Provo City, Utah County

My Dear Sister Martha,

It has been a long time since I either wrote to or heard from you.

I hope this will find you and all the children enjoying good health and other things you need.

I am writing a line or two to cousin “Ina D. Coolbrith” this morning, and am sending her ten dollars as a reminder of kinship: and I enclose herewith my Cheque No. 12—for $2500 as a small reminder to you, which I hope you will accept with my love and constant prayers for your well-being and happiness.

Julina[214] sends love, and says if you would like to make a few more aprons[215] she will pay you for them. She will send material

With love to all, affectionately your brother

Joseph F. Smith

Martha Ann to Joseph F.

Rec’d July 17—1915[216]

Provo City July the 17th

1915

My dearly beloved brother Joseph F your very welcome & kind letter of the 15th came safly to hand containing the check, you sent me for which I sincerly thank you [illegible strike-through] but that does not half express my gratitude for all your kindness to me. I was very sorry to hear that you had been suffering with your back again all all I could do was to pray for you. & that I never neglect to do I thank you for the [p. 2] kind rememberence of me in your prayrs, for I sorly need all the help I can get I am very lame can hardly get round some of the time but I try not give up I try to keep doing all I can I do hope & pray that I will never get intierly helpless Edna May[217] is working at the candy factry[218] she got work yester day from her Uncle walter Startup we have a little garden stuff in, some potatoes & squash & Arthur[219] is tending to that. I got a letter from Frank[220] the other [p. 3][221] day that they were all well or better than they had been his wife[222] is verry poorly she has been under the weather for a long time. her father[223] died week befor last & they buried him there Dealia[224] is home in Springvill[225] & Hyrum[226] will soon be coming home & I am very glad he is I think they are all anxious to come home, as soon as they can arange it that way. my family are all useualy well as far as I know at the [p. 4] at the present time. I have had severel bad spells with my heart it bothers me once in awhile. we had quite a shaking up here yesterday an irthquake.[227] Just a gentle reminder of what the Lord can do. I got out of the house with out being told. It stoped the clock opend the coubord doors & made the dishes rattle quite lively also the windos. we were very thankfull it was no wors, than it was. I will close with love to you all your loing sister

M A Harris

thank you for the stamps[228] I have wrten to Aunt Julina[229] will be very glad to get some more work[230]

[p. 5][231] P S I got a letter from Cousin Adel Jones[232] she was well improoving in health all the time she wished me to give you her love & sympthy in the loss of dear Aunt Sarah[233] she said the first that she had hird of her death she read it in the paper[234] she said she sent my letter to Cousin Ina[235] & that she had beged her the privlige of keeping it she said she loved me & allways had & I am sure I have aw [p. 6] I have allways loved her I sure would like to se her once more in this life but I guess that is out of the question now. I am so glad you can do something for her. I do hope & prey that she will see her mistake befor it is all to geather to late. I pray for her her that her eyes may be opend that she may not be cast of in the day of her recking she youst to be so sweet any one could not help loing her.

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

November[236]

Twentieth

Nineteen-fifteen

My Dear Sister,

Martha A. Smith Harris—

214 South 3d West St., Provo.

I suppose you have many things to be thankful for. It would be difficult for you to “count your many blessings”[237]—I suppose, and yet no one, so far as I know, has ever had so many blessings, that a little more, in addition to the stock already in hand, would be objectionable.

I cannot send you a Turkey for your Thanks-giving dinner, for I have none, besides if I could, some one would have to be cruel enough to kill the poor thing before it would be fit for use. So I am glad I have no Turkeys!! but if you have one, you can get something for the “Stuffing” with the enclosed $10.00

Affectionately your brother,

Joseph F. Smith

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

december 23 page 1Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 23 December 1915 (p. 1)

december 23 envelopeJoseph F. to Martha Ann, 23 December 1915 (envelope)

Salt Lake City, Utah, Dec. 23d 1915[238]

Martha Ann S. Harris

214 South 3d West—St. Provo.

My Dear Sister Martha.

I wish you the compliments of the Season. and send you herewith $10.00 to back up my wish. “If wishes were fishes” we would all have a “plank Shad bake”[239] on Christmas, as wishes are not always fishes, we may have to submit to a Turkey or a chicken dinner on that day.

One hundred and ten (110.) years ago, Your uncle Joseph Smith was born, at Sharon, Winsor Co. Vermont, and at the age of 38 years and 6 months, he was murdered in cold blood at Carthage—Hancock Co. Illinois—In the short time of 14—years he laid the foundations, by the help of God—and against the opposition of the world, of the most perfect Church and Plan of Salvation the world has ever known, and you are his Niece! God bless my sister Martha—Affectionately your brother, Jos. F. Smith

P.S. Love and best wishes and the compliments of the Season to all the children and to all our friends. God have pitty on our enemies—Yours &c. Jos. F. Smith[240]

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

Salt Lake City, Utah, Feb—17—1916[241]

Martha Ann S. Harris.

214 South 3d West St. Provo.

My Dear Sister Martha—

Please find herewith my Cheque No. 24—for $1500 for your personal needs. I would gladly have made this double what it is—but I have been helping Jesse, Lucy, and Martha[242] to secure homes for themselves—and it has made “grass mighty short” with me, I am also writing Cousin Ina[243] to night and am sending her $1500 to help her out a little.[244] She writes me very dolefully—about her physical and her financial condition.[245]

I have had a siege of La Grippe[246] but am much better. Julina[247] has been quite under the weather with cold and cough, but is improving. With love to you and all. I am sincerely your brother

Joseph F. Smith

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

march 20 page 1Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 20 March 1916 (p. 1)march 20 page 2Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 20 March 1916 (p. 2)

SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH, Mar. 20—1916

Dear Martha:—

Aunt Julina[248] sends you the enclosed Cheque, No. 544, for $22.50—in payment for consignment of Aprons[249] just received. We hope this will find you well—and prosperous.

We got a glimpse or two of Frank[250] while he was here—but learned nothing about the object of his visit.

We are all just a little troubled with colds, but nothing serious and I hope we will soon be convellescent.

Give our love to the girls and children, Affectionately your brother. Joseph F.——[p. 2]

P.S. David’s Emily[251] is still waiting—we think she will now hold out until the 25th Chase’s, Lileth[252] is expected to be confined about the 25th

Lucy M. and Jesse’s May are “casting their shadows before”.[253] As also is E. Melissa[254]—and I donot know how many more. God bless the babies here and now and yet to come—and hence forth and forever! I omitted to mention Joseph’s—Ethel,[255] George’s Lillian[256]—and they are all I can think of now.

As ever your bro. Joseph F.——

Martha Ann to Joseph F.

envelopeMartha Ann to Joseph F., 27 March 1916 (envelope)march 27 page 1Martha Ann to Joseph F., 27 March 1916 (p. 1)page 2Martha Ann to Joseph F., 27 March 1916 (p. 2)page 3Martha Ann to Joseph F., 27 March 1916 (p. 3)page 4Martha Ann to Joseph F., 27 March 1916 (p. 4)envelopeJoseph F. to Martha Ann, 30 September 1916 (envelope)

RECEIVED

MAR 29’16

PRESIDENT’S OFFICE[257]

Provo City March 27 1916

Mr Joseph F Smith

My dear brother your short note of March the 20th came safely to hand with the check in it, for the aprons. I was glad to hear from you once more, that you had returned home from your journey[258] in safty & I thank you for the check pleas tell Aunt Julina[259] I thank her also. I have been very buisy sence recieveing it, making some temple clothes for a lady from Idiho I hope you will all [p. 2] be better of your colds by this time. & I thank you for the little bugit of news you sent me. I will give you a buget from our side of the house. I to have had quite a shour of home emigration Zina E had a fine, 11 pound <& a half> boy[260] & Ruby Williams daughter has her 4th son born[261] Stirling has a daughter born [illegible strike-through] in Feeb[262] Alva has one born in march[263] Wilford a baby born in march[264] I do not know which it is yet [illegible strike-through] a week ag [p. 3][265] so that makes 70 one gran children for me & thirty 3 4 great grand children we have had a very heavy snow here but it is nearly all gon of now. I can join in with you in saying god bless the babyes for ever. I want to come up to conference[266] but do not know wheather I will bee able to come or not. I sirten do hope & pray that all may be well with them [p. 4] I got a card from Franklin[267] <he> got to Apaso[268] on the 23 I got a card from him to day saying that he got lay [illegible strike-through] of 10 hours on acount of a wash <out> out he came from home to try to get another job for his teames as soon as this was done. they are thrue with thir job now & may the Lord you & yours as you say for ever is the humble & sincere prayr of your humble sister M A Harris with love to you all hope to see you all in the near future[269]

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

Sept. 30th1916[270]

My Dear Sister:—

Martha Ann Smith Harris:

214 South 3d West St. Provo.

We have not heard from you for a long time. nor you from us, perhapse. I hope you are all in good health, with something to eat, drink and wear. We are all usually well—but growing older at an excellerated pace, like the cart-wheel rolling down the hill, which gains speed as it nears the bottom!

Julina[271] says she has some more for you to do, if you want it, but she will ait until she sees you. She sends her love to you and the children. She expects her brother Alfred B. Lambson and family to come from the north[272] on a visit during Conference.[273]

There will always be room for you. I enclose herewith my cheque in your favor for $15.00 which hill help you to come to Conference.

Give my love to the Children in which Julina, Edna and Mary[274] join. Your brother Joseph F.——

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

Beehive House[275]

Salt Lake City—

Nov.r 14th 1916

Martha A. S. Harris:—

214 South 3d West St. Provo,

Dear Aunt Martha:—

Your Card of gratulation in rememberance of myself and Nov. 13th[276] and that of Artie’s,[277] reached me this morning. Thank you both, and all my kind friends and kinfolks for their kind wishes and rememberances!

There were 125 members of my family present at the Bishop’s Building,[278] from 4—to 6 o’clock yesterday, including 65. Grand children out of a possible 79.

Some of the little ones were troubled with slight colds, and the weather was very cold, so it was thought best for them not to come out. Therefore 13 of the grand children remained at home—And One—Joseph S. Nelson[279]—is in England on a mission.

We are all pretty well. And hope you and children are also well—Julina[280] sends you a Cheque for $18.00

All send love to you and family, Your bro. Joseph F.

P.S. I also enclose for you a cheque for $10.00 to help you to get coal—or pay on tax a/c, as you wish.

Jos. F.——[281]

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

Salt Lake City, Utah, Nov.r 29th 1916[282]

My Dear Sister Martha:—

Please accept the enclosed $10.00 bill as a trifeling remembrance for your Thanks-giving dinner. I should have sent it yesterday but was so much employed I could not get the time to do it. I hope it will reach you in time in time for an evening dinner, if too late for a mid-day meal.

I hope you are better in health. We all seem to be gaining a little

Some of the little ones are teathing and fretful, with the usual colds which come to babies when cutting teath. Julina is up at Inas,[283] and the girles[284] are out—and I want to get the first post-collection, so you will excuse haste. Ever your naughty brother

Joseph F.——

Martha Ann to Joseph F.

December 13 page 1Martha Ann to Joseph F., 13 December 1916 (p. 1)december page 2Martha Ann to Joseph F., 13 December 1916 (p. 2)December page 3Martha Ann to Joseph F., 13 December 1916 (p. 3)page 4Martha Ann to Joseph F., 13 December 1916 (p. 4)envelopeJoseph F. to Martha Ann,
19 December 1916
(envelope)page 1Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 19 December 1916 (p. 1)

RECEIVED

JAN—2’17

PRESIDENT’S OFFICE[285]

Provo City Dec the 13th

1916[286]

Mr Joseph F Smith my dearly beloved brother your dear letter came safly to hand with the check in it, for me & when I seen it it so over come <me> I had to have a good cry with gratitude to my Father in Heaven <for> giveing me such a dear brother. I do not know how to express my harts gratitude to you for your goodnes to me. I guess you think I am very on greatfull not to [p. 2] in answer before now I have been very buisy this is the ferst time I have been able to get at it & my dear brother I do thank you more than I can tell you but you will git tierd of this I am afraid. but it is a long lain that has no turn & I do hope it may turn some day in my way before it is to late I was so sorry to hear from Aunt Julinas[287] letter, that you had been troubled with that pain in your chest [p. 3][288] I do hope that it will soon be better. I have had a pain in my side for the last to days I guess it must be indigestion perhaps I have taken coald & it has settled there I hope Inas baby[289] will not take the meezles babys of that age re not so apt to take it. I went to my daughter Zinas[290] for Crsmass dinner John[291] sent for me to come to his house but I had promssed Zina so I had to put them [p. 4] for some other time Hyrum & Franklin are in new Mxico working the assesment on their mine thare.[292] I was pleased to hear you could help Ina[293] & our other cousin when you wrte pleas tell me whoo Athaia[294] is whos daughter she is. well I will close for the present for I have some more letters to wrte & my desire <is> that you may have [illegible strike-through] a hapy new year & a prosperous one & a whole lot of them

frrom your loing sisters M A. Harris[295]

with love to all I am as ever Aunt Martha[296]

Joseph F. to Martha Ann

December 19, 1916.[297]

Martha A. S. Harris,

214 South 3rd West St.,

Provo, Utah

My Dear Sister:—

Thinking that you mught enjoy a turkey for your Christmas and a little cranberry sauce, I thought I would forward to you the enclosed check for $25.00, which I hope you will accept in the spirit in which it is offered, and will enjoy the use of it.

I am serving Cousin Ina[298] in the same way, but I do not expect from her the same sisterly appreciation that I usually receive from you. I am happy to say that we are all usually well, with the exception of some of the little ones who are suffering from teething and other little ailments incident to infancy. Our Ina[299] is in San Diego[300] with her three little children,[301] two of whom have the measles from the last account. One or two of Melissa’s[302] also have the measles. You will be delighted to hear that Willard has another little son[303] added to his family. Wishing you and the children the compliments of the season, I am,

Affectionately your brother,

Joseph F. Smith[304]

P.S. I am also sending—a small remembrance to Cousin Thalia[305]—who is in Kansas[306]

Notes
---

[1] The postmark on the envelope indicates that it was processed at 7:30 p.m. at the Salt Lake City Post Office on the day it was written. Typewritten in blue ink on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the Trustee-in-Trust.

[2] Martha Ann was sixty-nine, and Joseph F. was seventy-one.

[3] Charles Wilson Nibley was the presiding bishop of the Church at the time. See biographical register, “Nibley, Charles Wilson.”

[4] Joseph F.’s wife Mary Taylor Schwartz accompanied him on this trip. Joseph F. spoke to missionaries and Church members in each of the countries he visited and also did some sightseeing. See Richard Neitzel Holzapfel and R. Q. Shupe, Joseph F. Smith: Portrait of a Prophet (Salt Lake City, UT: Bookcraft, 2000), 177–79.

[5] Joseph F. and Martha Ann’s mother, Mary Fielding Smith, was born in Bedfordshire, England, on 21 July 1801.

[6] Salt Lake City.

[7] Sciatica, also known as sciatic rheumatism, occurs when the sciatic nerve at the base of the spine is compressed, making it painfully difficult to sit, stand, or walk. Anthon H. Lund visited Joseph F. on the day he returned from his European tour: “In the afternoon we went in to see the President. He has suffered with Sciatica the whole distance from here and back again on his European trip. He says when he lies down he is all right but when he is up he is suffering much pain.” Anthon H. Lund, journal, 3 September 1910. See John P. Hatch, ed., Danish Apostle, The Diaries of Anthon H. Lund, 1890–1921 (Salt Lake City, UT: Signature Books, 2006), 437.

[8] Jerusha Smith.

[9] The semicolon is written in pencil.

[10] A Salt Lake newspaper reported, “Provo, Sept. 17.—William F. Dunn, engineer at the Startup candy factory discovered something wrong with the belting last evening, and while endeavoring to adjust the trouble, was terribly injured by the machinery. He was dragged on to the shaft, which performed several revolutions before it could be stopped. The unfortunate engineer sustained a dislocation of the right knee, his collar bone was broken, and a screwdriver which he carried in his hip pocket was driven through his side, protruding from his back. However, it is believed that he is not injured internally, and hopes are therefore entertained for his early recovery.” “Serious Accident,” Deseret News, 17 September 1910, 9.

[11] John Smith.

[12] Signed in pencil and underscored with typewriting.

[13] The postmark on the envelope indicates that it was processed at Salt Lake City Post Office on 8 November 1910 at 9:30 a.m.

[14] Jerusha Smith.

[15] The 81st Semiannual General Conference was held on 6–7 and 9 October 1910.

[16] See Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 19 September 1910, herein.

[17] The American Party, organized in September 1904, was largely composed of local non-LDS citizens and disaffected Latter-day Saints. See Thomas G. Alexander, Mormonism in Transition: A History of the Latter-day Saints (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1986), 29. See also biographical register, “Kearns, Thomas.”

[18] OED defines wheedle as “to use influence or flattery to persuade someone to do something.”

[19] Thomas Kearns, a prominent Catholic businessman and politician.

[20] The Salt Lake Tribune had been an anti–Latter-day Saint newspaper from the time it was first published in 1870 but had become less strident when Kearns purchased it in 1901. Nevertheless, it was still often the voice of opposition against the Church.

[21] Anthon H. Lund reported the election results: “I was anxious about the result as it has been a very hard fought campaign with much bitterness and personal abuse. . . . It was pleasing to learn that the Americans were beaten. The country seems to have gone Democratic.” Anthon H. Lund, journal, 8 November 1920; quoted in Hatch, Danish Apostle, 443.

[22] From Joseph F.’s letterpress copybooks; original not extant.

[23] Julina Lambson.

[24] Alice Ann Kimball.

[25] John Smith and Jerusha Smith.

[26] Joseph Smith Jr.

[27] John Henry Smith reported, “In the evening the party who went to Vermont to dedicate the Monument at the Birth place of Joseph Smith about 75 persons were present. We had an elegant meal, some good singing and reciting and speaking.” John Henry Smith, journal, 23 December 1910; quoted in Jean Bickmore White, Church State and Politics: The Diaries of John Henry Smith (Salt Lake City, UT: Signature Books, 1990), 662.

[28] Joseph Albert Harris.

[29] Written on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the First Presidency.

[30] Joseph Albert Harris died on 28 May 1911, about two months after this letter was written. See Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 29 May 1911, herein.

[31] Latter-day Saint practice includes special prayers held in temples as part of the ordinances performed therein and during the meetings of Church leaders in the Salt Lake Temple.

[32] Generally held on the first Sunday of each month. See Mary Jolley, “Fast and Testimony Meeting,” in Encyclopedia of Mormonism, ed. Daniel H. Ludlow (New York: Macmillan, 1992), 2:502.

[33] The 81st Annual General Conference was on held 6–7 and 9 April 1911.

[34] See Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 6 May 1909, herein, note 165.

[35] Martha Ann was born 14 May 1841.

[36] Based on Mark 7:37, the line comes from Elisha A. Hoffman’s hymn “He Doeth All Things Well,” published in 1879.

[37] Josephine Fielding, wife of Orson Omer Heath, was Joseph Fielding’s daughter. See biographical register, “Fielding, Josephine.”

[38] Located ninety miles north of Salt Lake City and seven miles north of Logan, Smithfield was originally known as Summit Creek when it was founded in 1857.

[39] Seraph Celestia Heath. See biographical register, “Heath, Seraph Celestia.”

[40] Julina Lambson.

[41] Emmeline B. Wells, affectionately known as “Aunt Em,” had been the Relief Society General President since 3 October 1910. See biographical register, “Woodward, Emmeline Blanche.”

[42] Julina Lambson had been the Second Counselor in the Relief Society General Presidency since 3 October 1910.

[43] Emmeline Wells noted on 16 May 1911, the day Joseph F. added a postscript to his unfinished 14 May letter, “Came up early and went off to Jordan Stake. Clarissa and Julina with me, called at President H. H. Larson’s and had some refreshment fine strawberries, I spoke in the morning but gave Clarissa the most time as she was going away and could not speak in the afternoon, however it came about that Julina had to go too, Afternoon Julina spoke a few minutes & I had all the time.” Emmeline B. Wells, journal, 16 May 1911, BYU.

[44] Lester Jenkins Cannon, son of Sarah Ann Jenkins and Abraham H. Cannon, was serving a mission in the Netherlands when he suffered from appendicitis complicated with peritonitis. He died on 16 May 1911 in Lille, France. See biographical register, “Cannon, Lester Jenkins.”

[45] From Joseph F.’s letterpress copybooks; original not extant.

[46] Julina Lambson.

[47] Martha Ann’s son, Joseph Albert Harris, died on 28 May 1911 at age forty-nine, leaving behind his wife, Johanna Patten, and six children. A Provo newspaper reported that he died of “nervous exhaustion after several months’ illness.” See “Former Provo Man Dead,” Daily Herald (Provo), 30 May 1911, 1. See also Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 3 April 1911, herein.

[48] Written upside down in the top margin.

[49] From Joseph F.’s letterpress copybooks; original not extant.

[50] John Smith died at 11:35 p.m. the night after a six-day battle with pneumonia. See “Patriarch Smith Summoned Home,” Deseret News, 7 November 1911, 1, 6.

[51] Ray Davis, John Smith’s son-in-law, lived in Preston, Franklin County, Idaho. See biographical register, “Davis, Ray Leroy.”

[52] Dr. C. F. Wilcox, “Physical and Surgeon, Both Phones 367. 407 Templeton Blk.” See Business Directory of Salt Lake City, Utah (Salt Lake City, UT: n.p., 1909), 108.

[53] Joseph F. spent an hour with his older half brother before writing this letter.

[54] The envelope includes a postal department stamp in the upper left-hand corner that reads, “Delivery delayed on account of insufficient time” (the delay most likely caused by the increased volume of mail during Christmastime). The postal stamp indicates that it was processed at the Salt Lake City Post Office at 12:00 p.m. Joseph F. has written Martha Ann’s address as well as the word Personal, most likely because he has included a ten-dollar check. The letter is written on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the President.

[55] Joseph F. sent several people checks to cover Christmas dinners at this time. See for example, Joseph F. to Ina D. Coolbrith, 20 December 1911; Joseph F. to Bishop Franklin S. Tingey [17th Ward, Salt Lake City], 21 December 1911; and Joseph F. to Jerusha Smith Pierce, 22 December 1911.

[56] Refers to Edna Mae Simmons and John Arthur Simmons. See Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 2 April 1905 and 10 April 1907, herein.

[57] The journals of most of those who likely participated, including Joseph F., Francis M. Lyman, Heber J. Grant, and Joseph Fielding Smith, are held in the Church History Library and are closed to researchers, so additional information about this gathering is unknown. The meeting is not mentioned in the Journal History of the Church.

[58] The Salt Lake Temple Annex was designed by Joseph Don Carlos Young in 1866, constructed in 1888, and demolished in 1962 and replaced by a temporary annex that was replaced in 1966 with the annex currently in use. The annex accommodated three hundred people in the main assembly hall, which featured a podium for speakers. See James E. Talmage, The House of the Lord: A Study of Holy Sanctuaries Ancient and Modern (Salt Lake City, UT: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1912), 255–59.

[59] Joseph Smith Jr.

[60] Another celebration was held on Saturday, 23 December 1911. James E. Talmage noted, “This evening wife and I were among the invited guests at the Smith anniversary gathering of the Centennial Memorial party in the celebration of the dedication of the Joseph Smith monument. The party was given by Prest. Smith, at the Lion House.” James E. Talmage, journal, 23 December 1911, BYU. The printed program, included in Talmage’s journal, indicates the gathering was held in the “Assembly Rooms at 5 p.m. Sharp.” An extended report of the event appeared in a Salt Lake newspapers, “‘Vermont Party’ Gathers on Birthday of Prophet,” Deseret News, 25 December 1911, 1.

[61] Ina Coolbrith (née Josephine Donna Smith) spent most of her life in the San Francisco Bay Area and kept her Latter-day Saint heritage hidden. Following the death of her older sister Agnes Charlotte Smith, Ina cared for her niece and nephew, taking work at the Oakland Free Library, where she later mentored prominent figures such as Isadora Duncan and Jack London. Following the devastating 1906 fire and earthquake, Ina found herself in financial difficulty.

[62] Stamped with blue ink in the top left margin of page 1.

[63] Edna Lambson.

[64] Joseph F. and Julina Lambson’s daughters Rachel Smith and Edith Eleanor Smith.

[65] Hyrum Smith Harris.

[66] Franklin Hill Harris.

[67] “[26 DEC 1911]” is written above “3” in an unknown hand.

[68] Martha Ann suffered multiple accidents during her life, which may have added to her discomfort as she grew older. In addition to falling in 1892 (see Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 20 June 1892, herein), she fell and broke her right arm in 1898, an injury that, according to her granddaughter, caused her severe suffering “for many months, not only physically but emotionally.” See Carole Call King, “History of Martha Ann Smith Harris, 1841–1923” (unpublished manuscript in editors’ possession), 5. She had also previously fallen and shattered a bone in her knee (see Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 7 March 1894, herein), and she may have suffered from a hernia as well (see Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 1 February 1906, herein, note 109).

[69] Mary Taylor Schwartz Smith, Joseph F.’s wife.

[70] Agnes Taylor Rich Hoagland Schwartz died on 12 December and was buried on 15 December 1911. Joseph F. Smith , Francis M. Lyman , Charles W. Penrose , Frank Y. Taylor, and Hyrum M. Smith spoke at her funeral. See “Tributes to Worth of Mrs. Agnes Schwartz: President Smith and Others Speak Highly of Life of Noble Woman,” Deseret News, 15 December 1911, 2.

[71] Royal Grant Smith, son of Mary Schwartz and Joseph F., was five years old at this time.

[72] Martha Artimissa Harris, Sarah Lovina Harris, and Jessie Lena Freckleton.

[73] Verna Passey, born on 18 July 1910 to Sarah Lovina Harris Passey. See biographical register, “Passey, Verna.”

[74] “[26 DEC 1911]” is written above “5” in an unknown hand.

[75] Franklin Hill Harris was apparently working as a railroad contractor in New Mexico.

[76] Ina Coolbrith (née Josephine Donna Smith). See Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 22 December 1911, herein.

[77] Written on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the First Presidency. Joseph F. was seventy-three, and Martha Ann was seventy-one.

[78] Joseph F. noted in his diary, “Wrote to Jerusha, Martha Ann, & Sarah E.” Joseph F., journal, 22 June 1912.

[79] Jerusha Smith died five days later, on 27 June 1912. Joseph F. reported, “65 years today since the Martyrdom. At the Temple . . . Jerusha died today.” Joseph F., journal, 27 June 1912.

[80] Brigham City, Box Elder, Utah, is about sixty miles north of Salt Lake City.

[81] Eli Thomas Pierce, son of Jerusha Smith and William Pierce. See biographical register, “Pierce, Eli Thomas.”

[82] Jaundice, a yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes, is very often the result of liver disease such as hepatitis or liver cancer .

[83] Sarah Ellen Richards.

[84] Fielding is located about eighty-four miles north of Salt Lake City.

[85] Written on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the First Presidency.

[86] Found in the Bible; see, for example, Job 28:13, Psalm 27:13, Isaiah 38:11, and Ezekiel 32:32. The phrase is also found in the Book of Mormon and Doctrine and Covenants; see Mosiah 14:8 and Doctrine and Covenants 81:3.

[87] Joseph F. noted in his diary the day before, “Pres. Lund at Deseret. Prest. Penrose and I in the office, disposing of letters and other business.” Joseph F., journal, 19 August 1912.

[88] Repining means “to yearn for something; to be discontented, to complain or to fret.”

[89] Sarah Smith Griffin died 6 November 1876. Her granddaughter Vaunie Griffin was sixteen at the time this letter was written. See biographical register, “Griffin, Vaunie.”

[90] Ernest Adelbert Griffin, the son of Sarah Smith Griffin and grandson of Hyrum (Joseph F. and Martha Ann’s father) and Jerusha Smith.

[91] John Smith.

[92] Julina Lambson. See Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 14 May 1911, herein.

[93] Wee-Smah refers to the “wee, small” (early) hours of the morning.

[94] Alice Ann Kimball.

[95] The Young Ladies’ Mutual Improvement Association was originally organized by Brigham Young as a retrenchment society for his daughters. It eventually became a Churchwide organization for young women. See Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 3 May 1872, herein, note 224.

[96] Emma Smith, daughter of Joseph F. and Edna, was unmarried at this time. See biographical register, “Smith, Emma.”

[97] Nonie is a nickname for Leonora Smith, Joseph F. and Sarah Ellen Richards’s daughter, who passed away 23 December 1907. She was survived by her four children.

[98] Minerva Smith, Joseph F. and Sarah Ellen Richards’s daughter, had five children at this time.

[99] Willard Grant Smith, son of Willard Richards Smith and Florence Grant, was born 12 May 1911.

[100] Mary Taylor Schwartz.

[101] Taylorsville, Salt Lake County, Utah, is located about nine miles southwest from Salt Lake City.

[102] Joseph F.’s diary for 1912 provides a remarkable number of responsibilities. For example, a few days after this letter was written, Joseph F. noted, “Long session of Council in Temple, and a long Session of Trustees of B.Y.U. held at Prests office.” Joseph F., journal, 29 August 1912.

[103] Written on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the First Presidency.

[104] Ina Coolbrith (née Josephine Donna Smith).

[105] Joseph F. noted in his diary on 19 November 1912, a few days before he wrote this letter, “Busy in Office all day as usual. Recd letter from Ina D.C., S.S.U. Board meeting this evening. Lumbago!” Joseph F., journal, 19 November 1912. On the following day, Joseph F. wrote, “A.M. Cleared off letters from Table & at 11 a.m. went to Ogden & spoke at funeral of Aunt Jane S. Richards who died 17th buried today.” Joseph F., journal, 20 November 1912.

[106] Julina Lambson.

[107] A common phrase based on three passages from Isaiah 48:22 and 57:20–21.

[108] Martha Ann’s living sons, William Jasper, Hyrum Smith, Franklin Hill, and John Fielding Harris.

[109] Typewritten in blue ink on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the First Presidency.

[110] Ina Coolbrith (née Josephine Donna Smith).

[111] Edna Mae Simmons, now thirteen years old, and John Arthur Simmons, twelve years old. See Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 2 April 1905 and 10 April 1907, herein.

[112] William Jasper Harris Jr.

[113] The Christmas edition of the Deseret News consisted of 114 pages and was published on 21 December 1912.

[114] The postscript is handwritten with one bracket enclosing the whole of it.

[115] Written on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the First Presidency. Joseph F. was seventy-four, and Martha Ann was seventy-one.

[116] William Jasper Harris Jr.

[117] See Martha Ann to Joseph F., 3 March 1913, herein.

[118] See Martha Ann to Joseph F., 3 March 1913, herein.

[119] Julina Lambson.

[120] Stamped in blue ink in the top left margin.

[121] William Jasper Harris Jr.

[122] Hemorrhoids.

[123] Wilford Leroy Harris, son of William Jasper Harris Jr. and Jessie Lena Freckleton, was twenty years old at this time. See biographical register, “Harris, Wilford Leroy.”

[124] Bessie Irene Harris, daughter of William Jasper Harris Jr. and Jessie Lena Freckleton, was seventeen years old at this time. See biographical register, “Harris, Bessie Irene.”

[125] Reuel Smith Harris, son of William Jasper Harris Jr. and Jessie Lena Freckleton. See biographical register, “Harris, Reuel Smith.”

[126] The other children of William Jasper Harris Jr. and Jessie Lena Freckleton were Ada Fern, Viola Myrtle, Alice Bernice, and Legrande Smith Harris.

[127] William Jasper Harris Jr.

[128] A nineteenth-century term for hemorrhoids.

[129] Probably a misspelling of “Artie,” a nickname for Martha Ann’s daughter Martha Artimissa Harris. The baby she refers to is probably Elbert Harris Startup, who was eight months old at this time. See biographical register, “Startup, Elbert Harris.”

[130] Sarah Lovina Harris had three children at this time: Lee Roy (four years old), Verna (two), and Alene (nine months). See biographical register, “Passey, Lee Roy,” “Passey, Verna” and “Passey, Alene.”

[131] John Fielding Harris, Martha Ann’s son.

[132] La grippe was a French term for influenza.

[133] “[P. 3, 3 MAR 1913]” is written in the top margin in an unknown hand.

[134] Julina Lambson.

[135] The 83rd Annual General Conference was held on 4–6 April 1913.

[136] Riffle has several meanings; none of them seem to fit Martha Ann’s usage here.

[137] See Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 28 February 1913, herein.

[138] Renting the house had generated income for Martha Ann, so the fire was an unfortunate financial setback.

[139] Franklin Hill Harris, son of William Jasper Harris and Martha Ann.

[140] “[POSTSCRIPT, 3 MAR 1913]” is written in the top right margin in an unknown hand.

[141] Ina Coolbrith (née Josephine Donna Smith).

[142] See Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 23 December 1912, herein.

[143] Possibly refers to Martha Ann’s granddaughter Sarah Rachel Furner, daughter of Zina Christine Harris and George Thomas Furner. George Furner died on 3 June 1902, and it is likely that Martha Ann helped care for Sarah, who was a newborn baby at that time. See biographical register, “Furner, Sarah Rachel.”

[144] Written on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the First Presidency. Joseph F. was seventy-four, and Martha Ann was seventy-two.

[145] Julina Lambson.

[146] In 1914 Joseph F. built a home in Santa Monica, Los Angeles County, California, as a retreat for his family, friends, and other Church leaders. The home became known as “Deseret.”

[147] Mamie is a nickname for Mary Sophronia Smith, and Donnie is Donnette Smith.

[148] Josephine Smith, daughter of Emily Louie Shurtliff and Joseph Fielding Smith, was ten years old at this time. See biographical register, “Smith, Josephine.”

[149] Emma Smith, Joseph F. and Edna Lambson’s daughter.

[150] Margaret West Smith, daughter of George Albert Smith and Susan Elizabeth West, was second cousin to Joseph F. and Martha Ann. She died in her home on 18 June 1913. Funeral services were held in the Sixteenth Ward meetinghouse on 20 June. Her obituary was published in the Deseret News on 18 June 1913.

[151] Ina Coolbrith (née Josephine Donna Smith).

[152] Written on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the First Presidency.

[153] Joseph Smith Jr.

[154] Edna Lambson.

[155] Food poisoning. It was once believed that food poisoning was caused by chemicals called ptomaines, found in spoiled food. Oxford English Dictionary, s.v. “ptomaine.”

[156] Julina Lambson.

[157] Written on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the First Presidency. Joseph F. was seventy-five, and Martha Ann was seventy-three.

[158] Smith home in Santa Monica.

[159] The average elevation for Salt Lake City is 4,327 feet above sea level.

[160] En route to Hawai‘i for his first mission.

[161] Stamped with blue ink in the top margin of page 1.

[162] Written sideways in the top left margin of page 1.

[163] Martha Artimissa Harris, Martha Ann’s daughter. She and her husband, Harry W. Startup, lived at 345 South First West Street in Provo.

[164] See Martha Ann to Joseph F., 26 December 1911, herein, note 62.

[165] “[P.3, 7 JUL 1914]” is written in the top right margin in an unknown hand.

[166] See Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 24 June 1914, herein.

[167] Israel “Happy” and Melinda Lucretia “Lula” Hodson. They were living at 430 North 2nd West, Provo, in 1910. By 1915 they were living at 160 West 2nd North, Provo, a distance of about half a mile from Martha Ann’s home.

[168] Edna Lambson.

[169] Likely refers to Sarah Lovina Harris, who gave birth to Richard Smith Passey on 14 July 1914.

[170] “[P.5, 7 JUL 1914]” is written in the top right margin in an unknown hand.

[171] Franklin Hill Harris was apparently working as a railroad contractor in New Mexico. See Martha Ann to Joseph F., 26 December 1911, herein.

[172] Likely refers to Andrew Kimball Smith, son of Joseph F. and Alice Ann Kimball.

[173] Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 24 June 1914, herein.

[174] Stamped with blue ink in the top left margin of page 1.

[175] Written sideways in the top left margin of page 1.

[176] Martha Ann seems to have suffered from several falls at this time in her life. See Martha Ann to Joseph F., 26 December 1911, herein, note 62.

[177] Martha Ann was staying with her daughter Martha Artimissa Harris. See Martha Ann to Joseph F., 7 July 1914, herein.

[178] “[P.3 9 JUL 1914]” is written in the top right margin in an unknown hand.

[179] Edna Mae Simmons. See Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 2 April 1905 and 10 April 1907, herein.

[180] Likely refers to Sarah Lovina Harris, daughter of Martha Ann.

[181] Julina Lambson.

[182] Mary Taylor Schwartz.

[183] The initials are handwritten and not part of the stamp.

[184] Stamped sideways with blue ink in the bottom margin of page 4.

[185] Written on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the First Presidency.

[186] Julina Lambson.

[187] Martha Ann made temple clothing, including aprons, for individuals and for the Church’s National Relief Society Burial Clothes Department. Julina was her connection for work in Salt Lake City, where Julina served as supervisor of the Wedding and Burial Clothes Department, overseeing the production and sale of temple and burial clothing to members of the Church.

[188] Martha Ann and Joseph F.’s distant cousin Adele Terrill Jones. She was the great-granddaughter of Stephen Mack Jr., first cousin of Joseph Smith. See biographical register, “Terrill, Mary Adele.” See Martha Ann to Joseph F., 17 July 1915, herein.

[189] Reno, Washoe County, Nevada, is located in the high desert valley at the foot of the Sierra Nevada and officially came into existence when a railroad station was built there in 1868 while the transcontinental railway was being constructed.

[190] Tonopah, Nye County, Nevada, is located midway between Reno and Las Vegas and was settled about 1910 after the discovery of gold and silver.

[191] Berkeley, Alameda County, California, is the home of the University of California, established in 1868.

[192] Joseph F. was aware of his past struggle in this regard. In 1905 he counseled his missionary son, “Your disposition is very much like my own. My greatest difficulty has been to guard my temper—to keep cool in the moment of excitement or trail. I have always been too quick to resent a wrong, too impatient, or hasty. I hope you will be very careful, my son, on these points. He who can govern himself is greater than he who ruleth a city.” Joseph F. to Alvin F. Smith, 8 June 1905. See Smith and Kenney, From Prophet to Son, 84.

[193] Joseph F.’s Santa Monica home, nicknamed Deseret. Over the next few years, he visited Southern California by train to relax, which included golfing, swimming, and taking long automobile drives. See Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 24 June 1914, herein.

[194] Elias Wesley Smith, Emily Jane Smith, and Marjorie Virginia Smith are children of Joseph F. and Julina Lambson. See biographical register, “Smith, Marjorie Virginia.”

[195] Written upside down in the top margin of page 1.

[196] Written on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the Trustee-in-Trust. Joseph F. was seventy-six, and Martha Ann was seventy-three.

[197] See biographical register, “Stringham, Henry.”

[198] Previously known as the Provo Woolen Mills Company, the mill changed names when Jesse Knight and associates purchased it in 1910.

[199] Edna Mae Simmons and John Arthur Simmons. See Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 2 April 1905, herein, note 84.

[200] A thick double-breasted plaid wool coat known in Canada as a “Mac.”

[201] David Asael Smith, son of Joseph F. and Julina. David was a counselor in the Presiding Bishopric at the time.

[202] Sarah Ellen Richards.

[203] Zina Smith was Joseph F. and Edna Lambson’s daughter. She died eight months later on 25 October 1915.

[204] Franklin Richards Smith, son of Joseph F. and Sarah Ellen Richards.

[205] Written on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the First Presidency.

[206] Except for the signature, the entire letter is typewritten in blue ink.

[207] Sarah Ellen Richards. See Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 5 February 1915, herein.

[208] Zina Smith.

[209] Edna Lambson.

[210] Ambrose John Greenwell. See biographical register, “Greenwell, Ambrose John.”

[211] Franklin Richards Smith. See Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 5 February 1915, herein.

[212] Signed by hand.

[213] Written on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the First Presidency.

[214] Julina Lambson.

[215] See Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 10 September 1914, herein. Edna Mae Headquest, Martha Ann’s granddaughter, recalled, “Grandmother would sit in her chair and embroider temple aprons to send to Salt Lake for sale in the temple store. Some of the aprons had each green leaf embroidered and appliquéd on white satin. . . [she] made beautiful temple robes, too. She worked very hard pleating the robes in fine linen.” Ruth Mae Harris, Martha Ann, 135–36.

[216] Written sideways in the top left margin of page 1.

[217] Edna Mae Simmons.

[218] The Startup Candy Factory was established by William B. Startup in Provo in 1875. Following William’s death, the business was run by his wife and three sons. One of those sons was Harry Walter Startup, the “Uncle Walter Startup” mentioned in the letter. He was married to Martha Artimissa Harris, Martha Ann’s daughter and Joseph F.’s niece.

[219] John Arthur Simmons.

[220] Franklin Hill Harris.

[221] “[P.3, 17 JUL 1915]” is written in the top margin of page 3 in an unknown hand.

[222] Josephine Parkes Robinson.

[223] Joseph Robinson, died on 26 June 1915. See biographical register, “Robinson, Josephine Parkes” and “Robinson, Joseph.”

[224] Delia Sarah Rebekah Twede.

[225] Springville, Utah County, Utah, is located five miles south of Provo.

[226] Hyrum Smith Harris.

[227] Provo experienced a minor earthquake on 29 May 1915; see “Earthquake Shock Felt,” Deseret Evening News, 29 May 1915, 8. A month and a half later, Provo was hit with a 5.0 magnitude earthquake at 3:00 p.m. that was felt throughout Bear River, Utah, and Salt Lake Valleys, Tooele, Park City, and Parley’s and Provo Canyons—an area measuring about five thousand square miles. In Provo, as Martha Ann mentioned, people ran out of doors. According to newspaper reports, Provo residents waited nearly an hour before returning to their activities after buildings swayed, clocks stopped, chimneys fell, dishes rattled, and walls cracked. The quake caused a rockslide that blocked the road in Provo Canyon. Some witnesses saw an upheaval of water, like a small tidal wave, at Utah Lake. See “Quake Sways Houses,” Salt Lake Herald-Republican, 16 July 1915, 6.

[228] Joseph F. often noted the purchase of stamps, envelopes, and stationery in his journals. See, for example, Joseph F., journal, 2 May, 30 July, 5 August, and 10 August 1912.

[229] Julina Lambson.

[230] Written upside down in the top margin of page 4.

[231] “[P.S. 17 JUL 1915]” is written in the top right margin in an unknown hand.

[232] Martha Ann and Joseph F.’s distant cousin, Adele T. Jones. See Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 10 September 1914, herein.

[233] Sarah Ellen Richards died on 22 March 1915. See “Wife of President Joseph Smith Dies,” Salt Lake Telegram, 22 March 1915, 9.

[234] Sarah Ellen Richards’s death was widely reported in regional newspapers, including in Reno, Nevada, where Adele T. Jones lived at the time. See “Wife of President of Mormon Church Passes,” Nevada State Journal, 23 March 1915, 1.

[235] Ina Coolbrith (née Josephine Donna Smith).

[236] From Joseph F.’s letterpress copybooks; original not extant.

[237] Written by Johnson Oatman Jr., “Count Your Blessings” became a popular hymn when it was first published in 1897.

[238] Written on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the First Presidency.

[239] Shad is a type of herring but is also a term often used for other fish. “Planked shad” refers to a method of preparing and baking fillets in which several fillets are nailed to an oak plank and smoked alongside an open fire. Sometimes many planks would be laid in a row next to several fires at a social gathering. Oxford English Dictionary, s.v. “planked,” “shad.”

[240] Written upside down in the top margin of page 1.

[241] Written on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the First Presidency. Joseph F. was seventy-seven, and Martha Ann was seventy-four.

[242] Jesse Kimball Smith and Lucy Mack Smith, children of Joseph F. and Alice Ann Kimball, and Martha Smith, daughter of Joseph F. and Edna Lambson.

[243] Ina Coolbrith (née Josephine Donna Smith).

[244] See Joseph F. to Ina D. Coolbrith, 17 February 1916.

[245] Ina D. Coolbrith to Joseph F., 20 January 1916.

[246] La grippe was a French term for influenza.

[247] Julina Lambson.

[248] Julina Lambson.

[249] Temple aprons; see Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 15 July 1915, herein, note 208.

[250] Likely Franklin Hill Harris.

[251] Emily Jenkins, wife of David Asael Smith, gave birth to Louise Smith on 23 March 1916. See biographical register, “Jenkins, Emily.”

[252] Leileth Nelson, wife of Heber Chase Rich Smith, gave birth to Heber Chase Smith on 24 March 1916. See biographical register, “Nelson, Leileth.”

[253] “Casting their shadows before” is an idiom for pregnancy. Lucy Mack Smith gave birth to Helen Mar Carter on 21 April 1916; and Louise May Anderson, wife of Jesse Kimball Smith, gave birth to Jesse Kimball Smith Jr. on 3 October 1916. See biographical register, “Anderson, Louise May.”

[254] Edna Melissa Smith did not give birth to any more children after 1914. There may have been a stillbirth.

[255] Joseph Fielding Smith’s wife, Ethel Georgina Reynolds, gave birth to Amelia Smith on 21 June 1916. See biographical register, “Reynolds, Ethel Georgina.”

[256] George Carlos Smith’s wife, Lillian Emery, gave birth to Wilford Emery Smith on 16 May 1916. See biographical register, “Emery, Lillian.”

[257] Stamped with blue ink in the top left margin.

[258] Joseph F. left Utah on 20 February to lay the cornerstones for the recently announced Hawaiian Temple in Lā‘ie, O‘ahu. However, heavy rains prevented this event, and Church leaders returned home on 20 March 1916. See “President Smith and Bishop Nibley to Go to Hawaii,” Deseret News, 19 February 1916, 2; and “Hawaiian Temple Is Being Built,” Deseret Evening News, 16 March 1916, 2.

[259] Julina Smith.

[260] Likely refers to Zina Christine Harris, who gave birth to William Henry Dennis on 4 February 1916. See biographical register, “Dennis, William Henry.”

[261] Unknown individuals.

[262] Sterling Patten Harris’s daughter Florence Ann Harris was born to Ann Lloyd on 29 February 1916. See biographical register, “Harris, Sterling Patten” and “Harris, Florence Ann.”

[263] Alva Robert Harris’s daughter Virginia Louise was born to Anna Louise Herman on 10 March 1916. See biographical register, “Harris, Alva Robert” and “Harris, Virginia Louise.”

[264] Wilford Leroy Harris, Martha Ann’s grandson, married Margery Ellen Sumner. Their daughter Ruth Harris was born on 20 March 1916. See biographical register, “Harris, Ruth.”

[265] “[3]” and “[27 MAR 1916]” are written in the top margin of page 3 in an unknown hand.

[266] The 86th Annual General Conference was held on 6–7, 9 April 1916.

[267] Franklin Hill Harris.

[268] Likely El Paso.

[269] The last word is written sideways in the right margin of page 4.

[270] Written on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the Trustee-in-Trust.

[271] Julina Lambson.

[272] Alfred Boaz Lambson Jr. and his family were living in Idaho at this time.

[273] The 87th Semiannual General Conference was held on 6–8 October 1916 in Salt Lake City.

[274] Living wives of Joseph F. at this time were Julina Lambson, Edna Lambson, and Mary Taylor Schwartz. Alice Ann Kimball was also living, though not included in this list.

[275] The official residence of the President of the Church in 1916.

[276] Joseph F. celebrated his seventy-eighth birthday on 13 November 1916.

[277] Martha Artimissa Harris.

[278] The Bishop’s Building, located in Salt Lake City, was dedicated in 1910.

[279] Joseph Smith Nelson, son of Joseph Nelson and Joseph F.’s daughter Leonora Smith. See biographical register, “Nelson, Joseph Smith.”

[280] Julina Lambson.

[281] Written in the top left corner of the paper.

[282] Written on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the First Presidency.

[283] Julina Lambson was likely visiting her daughter Julina Clarissa Smith.

[284] An affectionate nickname for Joseph F.’s wives.

[285] Stamped with blue ink in the top left margin.

[286] Joseph F. supplied Martha Ann with stamps and envelopes from time to time, beginning in the 1850s. In this case the envelope has a US two-cent George Washington preprinted stamp with the postal mark “PROVO UTAH DEC 30 3-30 p 1916.” Additionally, Joseph F. preaddressed the envelope in his own hand, “Mr. Joseph F. Smith 67 East South Temple St. Salt Lake City Utah” and added the word Personal to the front cover.

[287] Julina Lambson.

[288] “[P.3, 13 DEC 1916]” is written in the top right margin in an unknown hand.

[289] Likely refers to Luacine Peery, daughter of Julina Clarissa Smith. Julina had two children at this time; the youngest, Luacine, was four years old. See biographical register, “Peery, Luacine.”

[290] Zina Christine Harris.

[291] Likely John Fielding Harris.

[292] Hyrum Smith Harris and Franklin Hill Harris. See Martha Ann to Joseph F., 26 December 1911, herein.

[293] Likely Ina Coolbrith (née Josephine Donna Smith).

[294] Possibly refers to Joseph F. and Martha Ann’s cousin Thalia Grant Smith. See Joseph F. to Martha Ann, 19 December 1916, herein. See also biographical register, “Smith, Thalia Grant.”

[295] Written sideways in the right margin of page 4.

[296] Written upside down in the top margin of page 2.

[297] Typewritten in black ink on official letterhead of the Church from the Office of the Trustee-in-Trust. Martha Ann was seventy-five and Joseph F. was seventy-eight.

[298] Ina Coolbrith (née Josephine Donna Smith).

[299] Julina Clarissa Smith.

[300] San Diego, San Diego County, California. Ina may have attended the San Diego 1916 Exposition, also known as the Panama-California International Exposition. Dedicated on 18 March 1916, the “New International Exposition” was held in Balboa Park in honor of the opening of the Panama Canal. See Richard W. Amero, Balboa Park and the 1915 Exposition (Charleston: History Press, 2013).

[301] Julina Clarissa Smith, Ina, and her husband, Joseph Stras Peery, had three children at the time: Joseph Smith Perry (born on 6 February 1911), Luacine Perry (born on 2 December 1912), and Julina Perry (born on 19 February 1916).

[302] Edna Melissa Smith.

[303] Willard Richards Smith’s son Briant Grant Smith was born to Florence Grant on 15 December 1916. See biographical register, “Smith, Briant Grant.”

[304] Signed by hand.

[305] Thalia Grant Smith.

[306] Written in the bottom left margin of the page.