March 15th

Mar 15, 1806 - In Sharon, Vermont school teacher Joseph Smith Sr. writes a note: "This May Certify that Polley Beckworth By her good attention to her Study and the Rules and Discipline of the School this winter that She excelleth the rest of her [class] in reading and Spelling and has stood at the head the most of the winter and likewise She Stands at the head this Day it being the last day of the school Attest Jos[eph] Smith, Teacher Sharon March the 15th 1806"

Mar 15, 1831 - The GEAUGA GAZETTE, of Painesville, Ohio, states that "the Mormon Bible is Anti-masonick," and that "every one of its followers... are anti-masons." It quotes Martin Harris as saying the Book of Mormon was an "Anti-masonick Bible."

Mar 15, 1842 - Joseph Smith is initiated into Freemasonry and organizes the Masonic Lodge of Nauvoo. On the following day he becomes a Master Mason.

Mar 15, 1843 - One week after Joseph Smith is sealed to his 20th plural wife TIMES AND SEASONS states: "We are charged with advocating a plurality of wives, and common property. Now this is as false as the many other ridiculous charges which are brought against us. No sect has a greater reverence for the laws of matrimony or the rights of private property; and we do what others do not, we practice what we preach."

Mar 15, 1844 - Hyrum Smith, in TIMES AND SEASONS, publicly rebukes the Saints in China Creek, Hancock County: "some of your elders say, that a man having a certain priesthood, may have as many wives as he pleases, and that doctrine is taught here: I say unto you that that man teaches false doctrine, for there is no such doctrine taught here; neither is there any such thing practiced here. And any man that is found teaching privately or publicly any such doctrine, is culpable, and will stand a chance to be brought before the High Council, and lose his license and membership also: therefore he had better beware what he is about."

Mar 15, 1846 - Orson Hyde reads his own revelation against James J. Strang to a Sunday congregation in Nauvoo temple. That evening some see an unearthly light illuminating the temple, "as the brightness of fire," while others see angels. Hyde publishes his revelation as a broadside, but it is not canonized.

Mar 15, 1857 - Brigham Young preaches: " Joseph [Smith] is not resurrected; and if you will visit the graves you will find the bodies of Joseph and Hyrum yet in their resting place. Do not be mistaken about that; they will be resurrected in due time."
Heber C. Kimball preaches: "How much would you give for even a cane that Father Abraham had used? or a coat or ring that the Saviour had worn? The rough oak boxes in which the bodies of Joseph and Hyrum were brought from Carthage, were made into canes and other articles. I have a cane made from the plank of one of those boxes, so as brother Brigham and a great many others, and we prize them highly, and esteem them a great blessing. I want to carefully preserve my cane, and when I am done with it here, I shall hand it down to my heir, with instructions to him to do the same. And the day will come when there will be multitudes who will be healed and blessed through the instrumentality of those canes, and the devil cannot overcome those who have them, in consequence of their faith and confidence in the virtues connected with them."

Mar 15, 1861 - Brigham Young's office journal states: "The President remarked that Abel Lincoln had expressed a determination to Keep the Union in as good condition as he received it. He remarked that Abel Lincoln was no friend to Christ, particularly, he had never raised his voice in our favor when he was aware that we were being persecuted. He was acquainted with Joseph & Hyrum, and had been a master freemason, and that time would show what course he would pursue Abel Lincoln is in the hands of the Lord and he would control him to carry out his designs. He further remarked that Pres. Buchanan had been raised up as much as Pharaoh [sic] was. Buchanan was raised up to split up the Union."

Mar 15, 1877 - Romania Bunnell Pratt is first Mormon woman to obtain M.D. degree (from Women's Medical College in Philadelphia). On Nov. 1 she opens school of obstetrics in Salt Lake Citywhere she trains Mormon midwives and nurses for twenty-two years.

Mar 15, 1892 - Depositions in Salt Lake City about Nauvoo polygamy and other matters for so-called "Temple Lot case." Depositions begin on Apr. 18 at Independence, Missouri.
At Z.C.M.I. director's meeting Apostle Moses Thatcher offers to resign as a director but backs out when his offer is accepted.

Mar 15, 1922 - B. H. Roberts writes a letter to President Heber J. Grant and the Twelve Apostles: "You will perhaps remember that during the hearing on 'Problems of the Book of Mormon' reported to your Council January, 1922, I stated in my remarks that there were other problems which I thought should be considered in addition to those submitted in my report. Brother Richard R. Lyman asked if they would help solve the problems already presented, or if they would increase our difficulties. My answer was that they would very greatly increase our difficulties, on which he replied, 'Then I do not know why we should consider them.' . . . It is not necessary for me to suggest that maintenance of the truth of the Book of Mormon is absolutely essential to the integrity of the whole Mormon movement, for it is inconceivable that the Book of Mormon should be untrue in its origin or character and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints be a true Church." However he does not send the letter.

Mar 15, 1947 - CHURCH NEWS reports that Charles Davidson, now full-time missionary, has received contract from International Business Machines (IBM) to purchase invention for $5 million, payable over several years. Before his mission Davidson attended Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) on Westinghouse science scholarship.

Mar 15, 1949 - Thirty-one-year-old Harold Brown arrives in Buenos Aires as new president of Argentina Mission. He is former FBI agent with experience as U.S. Vice-Consul in Uruguay. Suspicious Argentine authorities arrest him temporarily on Sept. 9. This is beginning of strategic church assignments given to Mormons with training in U.S. intelligence and security services.

Mar 15, 1954 - O. Meredith Wilson is president, University of Oregon. Other Mormons appointed as university presidents outside intermountain states are Vern O. Knudsen (UCLA, 1959), G. Homer Durham (Arizona State University, 1960), O. Meredith Wilson (University of Minnesota, 1960), Stanford Cazier (California State University at Chico, 1971) E. Gordon Gee (West Virginia University, 1981), David P. Gardner (University of California system, 1984), E. Gordon Gee (University of Colorado, 1985; Ohio State University, 1990), V. Lane Rawlins (Memphis State University, 1990).

Mar 15, 1956 - First Presidency letter about large number of converts "to be absorbed in the existing stake and mission organizations of the Church. Their assimilation into these organizations has come to be a matter of grave concern." This statement refers to 21,669 convert baptisms in 1955. In 1995 there are 304,330 convert baptisms.

Mar 15, 1966 - In special meeting President David O. McKay, second counselor N. Eldon Tanner, and apostles Joseph Fielding Smith and Mark E. Petersen agree to counter Apostle Ezra Taft Benson's preaching of "John Birchism at stake conferences" and his efforts to align LDS church with John Birch Society during upcoming conference. As result CHURCH NEWS publishes Petersen's unsigned editorial on Mar. 26 that LDS church has "nothing to do with Birchers. . . .avoid extremes and extremists." Apostle Harold B. Lee's conference talk also attacks Birch Society and indicates that unnamed Benson is not in "harmony" with his quorum.

Mar 15, 1970 - First stake in Asia (Tokyo, Japan).

Mar 15, 2009 - HBO TV program "Big Love," about a Mormon Fundamentalist plural family, shows a dramatization of LDS temple Endowment ceremony. Photos of actors in Temple robes are printed in TV guide concerning the program. "Tokens" and veil ceremony are shown in detail.

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