June 4th

June 4, 1834 - Joseph Smith, traveling through Illinois, writes to Emma that he and others had been "wandering over the plains of the Nephites, recounting occasionally the history of the Book of Mormon, roving over the mounds of that once beloved people of the Lord, picking up their skulls & their bones, as proof of its divine authenticity."

June 4, 1844 - Joseph Smith has himself appointed legal guardian for orphan girls Maria and Sarah Lawrence. Joseph has been secretly married to both of them for over a year. On this day he also decides to prosecute "Laws and Fosters for perjury, slander, &c.… in behalf of Maria Lawrence" William Law, former Second Counselor to Joseph, had accused Joseph of living with Maria Lawrence "in an open state of adultery"

June 4, 1845 - Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimball learn that Warren Snow and Dominicus Carter have been jailed in Quincy, Illinois, for passing counterfeit money. Bishop Joseph L. Heywood confirms that they are guilty. In Utah Snow would become a bishop and Carter a member of a stake presidency.

June 4, 1859 - U.S. army officer writes: "Saw two skulls today from the scene of the Mountain Meadows Massacre[--]One of them was shot though[,] the ball entering the back part of the head and coming out near the right temple. The other had two gashes on the top as if from a sharp knife. They were of young persons."

June 4, 1863 - Passenger ship AMAZON departs London with 882 Mormon emigrants aboard, British author Charles Dickens observes: "Now, I have seen emigrant ships before this day in june. And these people are so strikingly different from all other people in like circumstances whom I have ever seen." He explains: "Nobody is in an ill-temper, nobody is the worse for drink, nobody swears an oath or uses a coarse word, nobody appears depressed, nobody is weeping . . . they established their own police, made their own regulations, and set their own watches at all hatchways."

June 4, 1867 - Brigham Young gives "pass" for William A. Hickman to leave Salt Lake Valley and travel east though mountains out of Utah. Exit pass states in part that he "is intending to leave this Territory, and in view of his doing so he should be at liberty to. . . . I know of no reason why he should not be permitted to attend to his business and leave, when he gets ready, in peace and quietness."

June 4, 1879 - John Taylor and apostles decline to allow Elijah Abel to receive temple endowment because he is Negroid, even though Abel received Melchizedek priesthood with Joseph Smith's authorization in 1836. This African American regularly attends his Seventy's quorum meetings and serves proselytizing mission just before his death in 1888.

June 4, 1885 - First Presidency and Apostles meet while "a number of the brethren stood guard outside. . . . It was decided we would form a colony in Old Mexico by unanimous vote of those present . . " This is during time of severe prosecutions for violations of anti-polygamy laws by U.S. officials.

June 4, 1900 - Apostle John Henry Smith dreams "that I was standing in front of some building where some kind of a meeting was being held. A tall dark complexioned man Picked my pocket, taking my watch. I captured him and gave him a very severe choking and recovered what he had taken."

June 4, 1923 - SALT LAKE TRIBUNE article "Temple Garments Greatly Modified, Church Presidency Gives Permission, Style Change Optional With Wearer" reports " Encasing the lower limbs the old-style garment reaches to the ankles and is looked upon by young members as baggy, uncomfortable and ungainly. The young of the gentler sex complained that to wear the old style with the new and finer hosiery gave the limbs a knotty appearance. It was embarrassing in view of the generally accepted sanitary shorter skirt. Permission is therefore granted by the first presidency to shorten the lower garment. Also buttons are permitted to take the place of the tie-strings. Young men of the church, especially those who take exercise or play games at gymnasiums, favor the shorter garment. The permission granted is hailed by them as a most acceptable and progressive one. Altogether, and except in few instances, the permissive modification is welcomed as a sanitary move and a change looking to the comfort and health of those who wear temple garments. Instead of the old style, coarse, unbleached, irritating material of which temple garments were once made, the finer knitted goods, and even silks, are now used."

June 4, 1966 - Apostle Delbert L. Stapley writes to Raymond W. Taylor (son of excommunicated but recently, posthumously, reinstated apostle John W. Taylor): "It is a rule followed by the Genealogical Society that if a marriage took place after the manifesto, that such marriages are not recognized nor will permission be given to seal such women to the man she or they were supposedly sealed to. Regardless of the sincere purpose of the women, they, as well as your father, were in violation of both the civil law and the law of the Church"

June 4, 1976 - Announcement of new bishopric position of "Presiding Bishopric Area Supervisor." Later called "area director of temporal affairs," this calling represents decentralization of Presiding Bishopric administration in Presiding Bishopric International Offices (PBIO). Several areas, each with its own BPIO, are administered by "zone administrator of temporal affairs." Although implemented outside LDS population centers of U.S. and Canada, these are first intermediate offices in twentieth century between Presiding Bishopric and ward bishops.

June 4, 1978 - Five days before the historic announcement extending the priesthood to all worthy male members, the Salt Lake Tribune publishes a poll of 600 adult Utahns. Over three-fourths say they perceive "none at all" or only "a little" racial discrimination in Utah. Interestingly, 40% of the non-Mormons "criticize discriminatory practices" in the state, while only 14% of the Mormons perceived discrimination as a problem.

June 4, 1988 - Postage stamp by British Commonwealth government of Western Samoa commemorates one hundred years of Mormonism there.

4 June 1992. Eugene Kovalenko is tried by a high council court in Ventura, California, for apostasy. Part of the evidence against him is a transcription of a 1990 Sunstone presentation. During the question and answer period, Eugene said: "We have the right to sustain or not sustain our leaders. I believe that we have defaulted powerfully with that process. It's become a rubber stamp. . . . We deserve the leaders we have. If they are old, decrepit, and carrying on with stuff that's a hundred years old, that's our fault." Later at a stake conference, Kovalenko votes not to sustain general and stake leaders.
Rex Mitchell, a professional mediator, is allowed to accompany Eugene but not to supply information or ask clarifying questions. According to his notes of the almost-six-hour disciplinary council, "Pres. Bryce was the central player and asked at least 90% of the questions. . . . It seemed much like a professional police process, done skillfully--e.g., do extensive investigation; bring in the suspect into a tightly controlled situation in which he is at a numerical/logistical/emotional disadvantage; give a minimal description of the charges; interrogate the witness in great detail, going over the same material in several ways, gradually inferring by your questions that you have inside/intimate information from many sources that the suspect did not anticipate; do not go into detail about your sources and do not show any documentation; continue the interrogation long/late enough to produce fatigue and possibly mistakes from the suspect; assume that the suspect is not telling the truth and ask questions designed to demonstrate discrepancies between what the suspect tells you then and past actions (writings); alternate, as convenient, between extremely literal interpretation of the suspect's writings and stretched inferences from the writings--in each case asking the suspect to justify your interpretation; profess to be interested in the well-being of the suspect; conceal any reactions to what the suspect says (minimize verbal or nonverbal cues to the suspects); do not give the suspect any information before, during, or after the session re the process or what happens next." Three weeks after the trial, Kovalenko receives a letter from the stake president announcing his excommunication for "'not sustaining' the Mormon leaders, showing insufficient remorse, and disobeying his local leaders."

June 4, 1993 - SALT LAKE TRIBUNE reports that University of Utah study shows that 61 percent of Utahns "believe bad parenting is the primary cause of severe mental illness." also 29 percent of Utahns believe that mentally ill persons "would be helped if they repented."

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