Charting the Course in Education

by Richard O. Cowan

Latter-day Saints have always been interested in education, believing that knowledge has eternal significance. During President Heber J. Grant’s administration, however, serious questions were raised concerning the nature of the Church’s educational program and what direction it should take. These concerns arose because of the economic burden of operating a system of schools and because of worries of the possible adverse effect of purely secular scholarship on the faith of young Latter-day Saints.

The Saints have turned to revelations received through the Prophet Joseph Smith in order to support their commitment to education. Frequently cited passages include: “The glory of God is intelligence, or in other words, light and truth.” “It is impossible for a man to be saved in ignorance.” (D&C 93:36; 131:6; see also 130:18-19.) Although the foregoing passages refer primarily to spiritual knowledge and attainment, the following injunction refers more clearly to the importance of gaining a broad education: “And I give unto you a commandment that you shall teach one another the doctrine of the kingdom …. [And] of things both in heaven and in the earth, and under the earth; things which have been, things which are, things which must shortly come to pass; things which are at home, things which are abroad; the wars and the perplexities of the nations, and the judgments which are on the land; and a knowledge also of countries and of kingdoms ….

Yea, seek ye out of the best books words of wisdom; seek learning, even by study and also by faith.” (D&C 88:77, 79, 118; see also 90:15 and 93:53.)

1888 Church Board of Education organized
1890 Religion Classes founded for elementary school students
1912 First seminary established near Salt Lake City
1920 Church decided to close its academies
1926 First Institute of Religion at University of Idaho
1931-33 Church’s junior colleges, except Ricks, closed
1932 Deseret Club organized in Los Angeles
1938 President J. Reuben Clark, Jr., delivered address on “The Charted Course of the Church in Education”; boards of Church schools consolidated
Consequently the Saints organized the School of the Prophets in Kirtland, one of the earliest programs for adult education in the United States. Upon arriving in the Great Basin they quickly established local elementary schools and a territorial university. In the 1870s Brigham Young inaugurated a system of “academies” or Church high schools, which grew to more than two dozen schools from Canada to Mexico during the following decade. To promote and give direction to these schools, the Church organized its board of education in 1888.

By the end of the nineteenth century, forces were at work that would drastically change the character of the Latter-day Saints’ educational system. The increasing number of non-Mormons in Utah led in 1890 to the passage of a territorial law forbidding religious instruction in public schools and providing for the establishment of public high schools. Therefore, during that same year the Church founded Religion Classes to provide weekday religious instruction that would supplement the secular learning children were receiving in public elementary schools. These classes convened in ward buildings after school, generally one afternoon each week. Thus, this new auxiliary functioned side by side with the Primary, which had been organized twelve years earlier. While the Primary emphasized religious activity, the Religion Class concentrated on instruction. Then, as religious instruction was eliminated from the University of Deseret (which was renamed the University of Utah in 1892), several of the Church’s academies began to add college-level courses, particularly in the field of teacher education.

With the growth of the free tax-supported high schools, enrollment declined in the LDS academies, where students were required to pay tuition. President Joseph F. Smith was quite concerned over this trend. He explained why the Church continued to spend a substantial share of its tithing funds to support the academies:

The object, I may say, almost the only purpose, for the maintenance of church schools is that true religion undefiled before God the Father may be inculcated in the minds and hearts of our children while they are getting an education, to enable the heart, the soul, and the spirit of our children to develop with proper teaching in connection with the secular training that they receive in schools. 1

Nevertheless, the trend continued, and by 1911 there were more Latter-day Saint youth attending the public than the Church schools. The Church therefore inaugurated a part-time religious education program similar to the Religion Classes, but for high school students. The first of these “seminaries” was opened in 1912 at Granite High School near Salt Lake City. This was done on recommendation by the Granite Stake Presidency. The new program quickly proved to be an effective way to supplement the secular education students were receiving in public high schools, and within a few years several more seminaries were opened, primarily in Utah. Thus, in the early twentieth century, the Church was conducting two distinct types of educational programs: (1) full-time schools providing secular as well as religious instruction; and (2) part-time religious education, the Religion Classes and seminaries, which supplemented secular instruction in public schools.

A Decade of Decision

The Church needed to decide whether to emphasize its full-time schools or its part-time religious education programs. In 1919 three members of the Twelve were called to give direction to the education work. Elder David O. McKay, formerly principal of one of the Church’s academies, and recently appointed general superintendent of the Sunday School, became commissioner; Elders Stephen L Richards and Richard R. Lyman became assistant commissioners. Adam S. Bennion became the new superintendent of Church schools the same year.

The first step toward the Church’s discontinuing its full-time schools came in 1920. The Board of Education adopted the following recommendations of Commissioner McKay: (1) Most of the academies should be closed because they were supported by funds from all over the Church while benefiting a relatively limited area. (2) A few of the academies, where college-level courses had already been incorporated-Dixie Academy in St. George, Brigham Young College in Logan, Weber Academy in Ogden, Snow Academy in Ephraim, all in Utah; and Ricks Academy in Rexburg, Idaho-would become Church junior colleges stressing “normal” or teacher-education programs. (3) Courses leading to a four-year degree would be concentrated at Brigham Young University. 2By 1923 nine academies had been closed and their buildings made available to the state at nominal cost. High school courses were also eliminated from the junior colleges.

The next major step in reshaping the Church’s educational program came following a series of key Board of Education meetings during February and March 1926. President Heber J. Grant identified the underlying cause for this reappraisal of the Church’s activities in education when he declared: “I am free to confess that nothing has worried me more since I became president than the expansion of the appropriation for the Church School system. With the idea of cutting down the expense, we appointed three of the Apostles as Commissioners; but instead of cutting down, we have increased and increased …. “In 1925 the Church had spent $958,440.67 for education, which amounted to 25.9 percent of its total tithing expenditures. 3

To guide the board in its deliberations, Superintendent Adam S. Bennion in 1926 formulated some specific questions (some of which are still being asked a half-century later): “1. Does the Church receive benefit in return from an eight to one investment in Church schools as against Seminaries? 2. Do these returns equal the returns possible in other fields from the same investment? 3. Does there lie ahead in the field of the Junior College the same competition with State institutions that has been encountered in the high school field? 4. Can the Church afford to operate a university which will be able creditably to carry on against the richly endowed universities of our land?”

At the conclusion of these discussions the board decided to continue establishing seminaries wherever they were needed and wanted, and to “withdraw from the field of the junior colleges” as the state made provisions to operate its own schools. Brigham Young University was to concentrate on upper division work, especially the preparation of teachers, and to work toward becoming a superior, though not necessarily large, Church university. 4

The first school to be closed was the Latter-day Saints College in Salt Lake City. After 1931 only two departments continued, as the LDS Business College and the McCune School of Music. The college’s campus, located just behind the Hotel Utah on the block east of Temple Square, provided badly needed space for the Genealogical Society library and for administrative offices of the auxiliaries and other Church organizations.

The board offered the facilities of other Church junior colleges to the respective local governments at nominal cost, with the understanding that these schools would be kept open. Under such an agreement Snow College in Ephraim was transferred to the state of Utah in 1932, as were Weber College in Ogden and Dixie College in St. George the following year . Gila College in Thatcher, Arizona, was transferred to the county in 1933. When Ricks College property was offered to Idaho, however, the state declined to assume this added economic burden. The Church therefore appropriated its own funds to keep Ricks College going. 5

The board decided to retain Brigham Young University as part of the Church’s educational program. Commissioner Joseph F. Merrill explained three reasons for this decision:

1 a university [is] an essential unit in our seminary system. For our seminary teachers must be specially trained for their work. The Brigham Young University is our training school.

2. We are living in a “scientific age,” many are pleased to call it an age in which the methods of science have permeated to a greater or lesser extent into all the activities of the human mind. And do we not need in the Church a group of scholars, learned in history, science and philosophy, scholars of standing and ability who can interpret for us and make plain to us the results of research and the reasoning of the human mind? When men find that we are learned in their science and philosophy they have respect for us, one that ignorance could never command. How can we be assured a group of scholars, familiar and sympathetic with our doctrines and ideals, scholars able and ready to be our advocates and defenders, unless we have a university?

3. I offer as a third reason why we need a university the fact that Latter-day Saint ideals are in many respects different from, and higher than, those of the average non-Latter-day Saint. Do we not need a university that shall hold up Latter-day Saint ideals so high in the educational world that all students in all schools of all grades may see the beauty thereof, and perhaps be influenced by them? 6

Thus by 1930 the Church had definitely placed its emphasis on part-time religious education. Only a few Church schools remained. These included Brigham Young University, Ricks College, LDS Business College, and McCune School of Music. The Church continued to operate the Juarez Academy and elementary schools in its northern Mexican colonies. Missions also operated several small schools in the South Pacific; one of the largest of these, the Maori Agricultural College in New Zealand, however, closed following a disastrous earthquake in 1931.

Payson, Utah, Seminary in 1926, at a time when the Church was expanding its part-time programs for religious education. (Church Archives)

Emphasis on Seminaries and Institutes

While the Church was taking steps to close most of its full-time schools, its part-time programs of religious instruction were expanding. For example, seminary enrollment grew from about five thousand in 1922 to nearly thirty thousand a decade later. The relative economy of these part-time programs would become increasingly attractive as the Great Depression of the 1930s tightened restrictions on Church funds. By 1938 seminary enrollment had reached 38,939. Typically these classes were offered in Latter-day Saint communities, mostly in Utah and southern Idaho, but a few scattered classes were also offered in Colorado, Nevada, and Wyoming. 7

Seminary classes were conducted on a “released-time” basis. This meant that students would take seminary instruction much the same as any other class during their regular

Development of Latter-day Saint Education

Elementary Education Secondary Education Higher Education
Schools founded in Ohio, Missouri and Illinois Provided in Ohio, Missouri and Illinois beginning with the School of the Prophets in 1833 University of Nauvoo chartered 1840
Sunday School founded in 1849
Tax-supported schools established immediately in pioneer settlements in the Rocky Mts. Gap existed between elementary and secondary education University of Deseret chartered 1850
Primary Association organized in 1878 Protestant groups founded schools in Utah to convert the Mormons
Increasing non-Mormon population lessened Church influence over schools Brigham Young Academy founded in 1875-first of 22 Church academies
Church Board of Education founded 1888 Increasing non-Mormon population lessened L.D.S. influence
Public School Law 1890 prohibited religious instruction in the public school
Religion Classes established 1890 First public high school-1890 University of Deseret became University of Utah 1892
In 1911 public high schools exceeded declining academies’ enrollment Church stressed “normal” work to provide public school teachers
First Seminary established at Granite High School in S.L.C. 1912 B.Y. Academy added college level courses and name changed to Brigham Young University 1903
Church academies abandoned(except Juarez) 1920s-some became junior colleges, others became public high schools B.Y. College, Logan, Weber, Dixie, Gila, Snow and Ricks became Church junior colleges 1920s
First Institute of Religion at University of Idaho 1926
Junior Seminaries established 1929
Religion Classes merged into Primary 1929 Church junior colleges (except Ricks) transferred to states 1930s
The Church has expanded school systems in the Southern Pacific and in Latin America

Early-morning seminaries expand during 1950s

Unified Church School System Organized 1953

Church College of Hawaii opened 1955

Home Study Seminary 1967

Church Commissioner Appointed 1970

CCH became BYU Hawaii Campus 1974

school day. Over the years there have been several inconclusive challenges to this system. One of these came in 1930 when the state high school inspector charged that the principle of separation between church and state was being violated because high school credit was granted for religion classes and because public funds helped bus students who spent one hour of their clay in seminary. In response, Commissioner Joseph F. Merrill pointed out that giving credit for Bible courses taught in private schools was an accepted practice, and that seminaries actually reduced public educational costs by providing classes for many students one hour each day.

Finally, the state board of education ordered the seminaries be operated as completely separate units but approved granting high school credit for some seminary classes. 8Most local school boards supported the LDS seminary program. Ironically, only in Salt Lake City did the board reject the re-leased-time concept, resulting in seminary classes being held early in the morning before school hours. Consequently, seminary enrollment was only 10 percent in Salt Lake City, while the average in released-time areas was 70 percent.

A similar part-time religious education program, originally called Collegiate Seminary, had developed on the university level. It began in 1926 when the First Presidency personally appointed J. Wylie Sessions to go to the University of Idaho in Moscow “to take care of our boys and girls” there, and “to see what the Church ought to do for our students attending state universities.” Sessions, who had a background in education but not in religious instruction, analyzed any information he could find about what other groups were doing to get religion onto college campuses. He particularly patterned his program after the religious “foundations” at the University of Illinois. The name “Institute of Religion” was suggested by a non-Mormon friend in Idaho. Sessions believed that classes with solid academic content, along with well-planned social activities and an attractive, well-equipped building, were all essential to his program for competing successfully for the students’ time. 9

By 1929 similar programs had been established on two other campuses, and during the 1930s institutes spread to a total of seventeen locations, including all major schools in the Intermountain states as well as the University of Wyoming and several locations in California. Sessions personally supervised the inauguration of the program and the erection of facilities at several of these locations.

Unusual circumstances led to the establishing of institutes in southern California. In 1935 the University of Southern California invited the Church to send a representative to instruct academic classes on Mormonism in its school of religion. Elder John A. Widtsoe of the Council of the Twelve, a former university president, received this assignment. Following the 1935-36 school year, G. Byron Done was appointed to succeed Elder Widtsoe and to become director of the institute in Los Angeles. In order to promote the institute programs and to provide additional social contacts for students, Done inaugurated “fireside chats,” informal gatherings on Sunday evenings that treated topics of current interest.

The institutes provided an opportunity to integrate religious instruction with the secular university studies. By 1938 there were approximately four thousand students enrolled.

A companion program, the Deseret Club, had its beginning in southern California. A group of leading Latter-day Saints felt the need to bring students together for intellectual and social activities within the influence of Latter-day Saint ideals and standards. The Deseret Club was formally organized in 1932 at the campus of the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA). The clubs soon spread to other Los Angeles college campuses. When Elder Widtsoe was in the area, he recognized the value of the Deseret Club activity in the lives of LDS students, and in 1936 he was instrumental in bringing it under the official sponsorship of the Church Board of Education. Eventually, Deseret clubs came to be organized on campuses where there were not enough Latter-day Saint students to justify establishing an institute of religion. 10

Worldly Scholarship and the Gospel

LDS educational leaders during the twentieth century have stressed the importance of scholarly preparation for faculty members, especially in the Church’s schools. This training, however, made some Church authorities and even members fear that the classes of certain teachers were becoming increasingly tainted by the false notions of the world.

President George H. Brimhall of Brigham Young University was eager to strengthen the school’s faculty and to expand its curriculum. Between 1907 and 1909, therefore, he hired four new teachers who had advanced degrees from leading universities of the nation; one of these was the first Ph.D. to teach at BYU. These teachers, however, enthusiastically presented their speculative theories as the product of the most current scientific research. Students were confused when these ideas came into conflict with traditional gospel teachings. Following a careful investigation, the Church’s superintendent of schools concluded that these professors treated the Bible as only “a collection of myths [and] folklore” with “some inspiration,” that they rejected the idea of miracles, and presented “the theory of evolution… as demonstrated law.” 11Just two years earlier, the First Presidency had affirmed that Adam was “the primal parent of our race” who “Began life as a human Being, in the likeness of our heavenly Father,” and that the notion that “the original human being was a development from lower forms of the animal creation” is just one of “the theories of men.” 12When these teachers were dismissed in 1911, many predicted that this action would lead to the demise of BYU. In response, President Brimhall asserted, “… if the life of the college depends on any number of men out of harmony with the brethren who preside over the Church, then it is time for the college to die.” He believed that he could have sided with the professors and received much popular acclaim, but added, “I would rather be a Moses on the Mount with all of Israel against me, than Aaron at the altar of the golden calf with all of Israel dancing around and praising me.” 13

President Joseph F. Smith was concerned that inexperienced students were not always equipped to determine whether or not a given theory was true, and that discussions of such topics only leave the young people “in an unsettled frame of mind.” He explained that “the conclusion that evolution would be best left out of discussion in our Church schools” was not any indication of how much of this theory may be true or false. While the Lord has not revealed the “modus operandi” employed in creating the world, President Smith declared, he has revealed the “simple way we may serve him” and there need be no speculation about this. President Smith was concerned that speculation on modern theories would only lead to the formation of a “scholarly aristocracy” which would undermine the unity that should exist among members of the Church. 14

Academic scholarship, particularly in the field of religion, received increasing emphasis in the later 1920s and 1930s. With the expansion of the seminaries and the inauguration of the institutes, Church educational leaders felt the need to provide more adequate training and curriculum materials for the teachers in these programs. Instruction in theology was expanded at Brigham Young University. In 1930 Guy C. Wilson, who had opened the first seminary nearly two decades earlier, now became the first full-time religion teacher at BYU. Special summer courses were offered for seminary and institute teachers, and from 1930 to 1933 noted scholars in biblical and religious studies came to BYU as guest lecturers. At the same time, several promising graduate students were encouraged to seek advanced degrees at such noted centers as the Chicago Divinity School. By the mid-1930s, however, an increasing number of Church members and leaders were concerned over teachers of religion being trained by non-Latter-day Saint scholars, and were worried that “higher criticism of the scriptures” and other “humanistic” ideas were creeping into what was being taught. These concerns led the General Authorities to give much closer supervision to the Church’s educational system, especially to religious instruction. Two members of the Twelve were assigned to interview all faculty members at Brigham Young University to determine their loyalty to the Church and its teachings. As a result of this attention, several teachers felt uncomfortable and left BYU to accept positions elsewhere. 15

Two new counselors called to the First Presidency during the 1930s played a key role in giving important direction to education as well as to other Church programs. J. Reuben Clark, Jr., and David O. McKay became counselors to President Heber J. Grant in 1933 and 1934 respectively. Following a quarter-century’s distinguished diplomatic career, President Clark had become under-secretary of state and was serving as the United States ambassador to Mexico at the time of his call to the First Presidency. Perhaps none have come into the Presidency with a richer background in Church service than did David O. McKay; his name has appeared in earlier pages of this work in connection with his significant priesthood, Sunday School, correlation, education, and missionary assignments.

The First Presidency from 1934 to 1945: (from left) J. Reuben Clark, Jr., Heber J. Grant, and David O. McKay. (Utah State Historical Society)

In 1938 President Clark was assigned to set forth the mission of the Church’s education program and to outline the duties of those employed to teach in the Church’s schools, institutes, and seminaries. His address, “The Charted Course for the Church in Education,” was delivered at a special summer gathering of teachers at Aspen Grove in Provo Canyon near the BYU campus and has become an oft-quoted classic. President Clark began by citing “some of the more outstanding and essential fundamentals underlying our Church school education”:

The following are to me those fundamentals.

The Church is the organized Priesthood of God, the priesthood can exist without the Church, but the Church cannot exist without the Priesthood. The mission of the Church is… to teach, encourage, assist, and protect the individual member [and] the membership as a group in its living of the Gospel …. The Church is militantly to proclaim the truth, calling upon all men to repent, and to live in obedience to the Gospel, “for every knee must bow and every tongue confess.”

In all this there are for the Church and for each and all of its members, two prime things which may not be overlooked, forgotten, blinked, shaded, or discarded:

First: That Jesus Christ is the Son of God, the Only Begotten of the Father in the flesh, the Creator of the world, the Lamb of God, the sacrifice for the sins of the world, the atoner for Adam’s transgression; that He was crucified, that His spirit left His body, that he died; that He was laid away in the tomb; that on the third day His spirit was reunited with His body, which again became a living being; that He was raised from the tomb a resurrected being, a perfect being, the First Fruits of the Resurrection; that He later ascended to the Father; and that because of His death and by and through His resurrection every man born into the world since the beginning will be likewise literally resurrected.

These positive facts, and all other facts necessarily implied therein, must all be honestly believed in full faith, by every member of the Church.

The second of the two things to which we must all give full faith is: That the Father and the Son actually and in truth and very deed appeared to the Prophet Joseph in a vision in the woods; that other heavenly visions followed to Joseph and to others; that the Gospel and the holy Priesthood after the Order of the Son of God were in truth and fact restored to the earth from which they were lost by the apostasy of the Primitive Church; that the Lord again set up His Church, through the agency of Joseph Smith; that the Book of Mormon is just what it professes to be; that to the Prophet came numerous revelations for the guidance, upbuilding, organization, and encouragement of the Church and its members; that the Prophet’s successors, likewise called of God, have received revelations as the needs of the Church have required and that they will continue to receive revelations as the Church and its members, living the truth they already have, shall stand in need of more; that this is in truth The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; and that its foundation beliefs are the laws and principles laid down in the Articles of Faith. These facts also, and each of them, together with all things necessarily implied therein or flowing therefrom, must stand, unchanged, unmodified, without dilution, excuse, apology, or avoidance; they may not be explained away or submerged. Without these two great beliefs the Church would cease to be the Church.

Any individual who does not accept the fulness of these doctrines as to Jesus of Nazareth or as to the restoration of the Gospel and Holy Priesthood, is not a Latter-day Saint; the hundreds of thousands of faithful, God-fearing men and women who compose the great body of the Church membership do believe these things fully and completely; and they support the Church and its institutions because of this belief.

Then, speaking more directly to teachers, President Clark continued:

The youth of the Church, your students, are in great majority sound in thought and in spirit. The problem primarily is to keep them sound, not to convert them.

The youth of the Church are hungry for things of the spirit; they are eager to learn the Gospel, and they want it straight, undiluted …. Doubt must not be planted in their hearts. Great is the burden and the condemnation of any teacher who sows doubt in a trusting soul ….

May I not say now a few words to you teachers?

In the first place, there is neither reason nor is there excuse for our Church religious teaching and training facilities and institutions, unless the youth are to be taught and trained in the principles of the Gospel, embracing therein the two great elements that Jesus is the Christ and that Joseph was God’s prophet. The teaching of a system of ethics to the students is not a sufficient reason for running our seminaries and institutes. The great public school system teaches ethics ….

The first requisite of a teacher for teaching these principles is a personal testimony of their truthfulness. No amount of learning, no amount of study, and no number of scholastic degrees, can take the place of this testimony, which is the sine qua non of the teacher in our Church school system. No teacher who does not have a real testimony of the truthfulness of the Gospel as revealed to and believed by the Latter-day Saints, and a testimony of the Sonship and Messiahship of Jesus, and of the divine mission of Joseph Smith-including in all its reality the First Vision-has any place in the Church system ….

You do have an interest in matters purely cultural and in matters of purely secular knowledge; but, I repeat again for emphasis, your chief interest, your essential and all but sole duty, is to teach the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ as that has been revealed in these latter days. You are to teach this Gospel using as your sources and authorities the Standard Works of the Church, and the words of those whom God has called to lead His people in these last days. You are not, whether high or low, to intrude into your work your own peculiar philosophy, no matter what its source or how pleasing or rational it seems to you to be. To do so would be to have as many different churches as we have seminaries-and that is chaos. 16

Organizational developments also reflected the General Authorities’ continuing interest in education and their desire to have more direct supervision of Church schools. Brigham Young University, Ricks College, and the LDS Business College each had been under a separate board of trustees. To achieve “a more centralized control,” these local boards were released in 1938, and all units were brought under the direct supervision of the General Church Board of Education. This board consisted of General Authorities and a few others. 17This increased supervision helped keep the educational system a powerful spiritual force in the Church. Unlike many other universities that started as church-related schools but gradually became merely secular institutions, Brigham Young University continued to relate the learning of the world to the revealed truths of the gospel.

A tangible vote of confidence in Brigham Young University’s future came in the Church’s decision to erect the Joseph Smith Building. Construction commenced in 1939 and became a project of the Church’s welfare plan, local wards helping to supply needed labor. The new building would house Church, social, and cultural activities, as well as classes in religious instruction. As he dedicated the Joseph Smith Building in 1941, President David O. McKay described the edifice as “a place of worship, a temple of learning, and a place of spiritual communion” which stood for the “complete education of youth-the truest and the best in life.” 18

Joseph Smith Memorial Building dedicated in 1941, represented the Church’s continuing commitment to Brigham Young University.(Harold B. Lee Library, BYU)

Attainments in Education

Latter-day Saints understandably pointed with pride to their educational attainments. Census data in 1940 indicated that Utah, where the majority of the population were Church members, had the highest level of educational attainment of any state in the Union: young adults in Utah had completed an average of 11.7 years of school compared to 11.3 in the next two highest states and a national median of 10.3 years. 19The Improvement Era reported with interest the results of studies conducted by E. L. Thorndike of Columbia University. He found that Utah had the highest proportionate number of persons listed in Who’s Who and American Men of Science. Thorndike concluded that “the production of superior men is surely not an accident, but is closely related to the kind of persons living in the area.” 20


Chapter 6. Charting the Course in Education

1. Conference Report, October 1915, p. 4.

2. Board of Education minutes, March 15, 1920, MS, Church Archives.

3. Board of Education minutes, February 3, 1926; Conference Report, April 1926, p. 4.

4. Board of Education minutes, February 3 and March 18, 1926.

5. Jerry C. Roundy, Ricks College: A Struggle for Survival (Rexburg, Idaho: Ricks College Press, 1976), pp. 113-51.

6. Joseph F. Merrill, “Brigham Young University, Past, Present and Future,” Deseret News, December 20, 1930, D&C 2, p. 3.

7. Enrollment Resume 1963-64 (Provo, Utah: Brigham Young University, 1965), p. 2.

8. I. L. Williamson, “On the Existing Relationship Between Religious Seminaries and Public High Schools in the State of Utah,” report to the Utah State Board of Education, January 8, 1930; Journal History of the Church, May 3, 1930, p. 4, and September 24, 1931, p. 3, MS, Church Archives; Board of Education minures, November 4, 1931.

9. J. Wylie Sessions, interview with author, July 29, 1965.

10. G. Homer Durham, “University Religious Training and the LDS Deseret Clubs, Weekday Religious Education 1 (March 1937): 1-2.

11. Ernest L. Wilkinson and W. Cleon Skousen, Brigham Young University: A School of Destiny (Provo, Utah: Brigham Young University Press, 1976), pp. 196-209.

12. James R. Clark, comp., Messages of the First Presidency, 6 vols. (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1965-75), 4:205; see the discussion in chapter 3 herein.

13. Ernest L. Wilkinson and W. Cleon Skousen, Brigham Young University: A School of Destiny (Provo, Utah: Brigham Young University Press, 1976), pp. 211-12.

14. Joseph F. Smith, editorial, Juvenile Instructor 46 (April 1911): 209.

15. Ernest L. Wilkinson, ed., Brigham Young University: The First One Hundred Years, 4 vols. (Provo, Utah: Brigham Young University Press, 1975), 2:262-69.

16. James R. Clark, comp., Messages of the First Presidency, 6 vols. (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1965-75), 6:47-58; Improvement Era 41 (September 1938): 520.

17. Ernest L. Wilkinson, ed., Brigham Young University: The First One Hundred Years, 4 vols. (Provo, Utah: Brigham Young University Press, 1975), 2:360.

18. Souvenir of the Dedication of the Joseph Smith Building, Brigham Young University Quarterly 28 (November 1, 1941): 1; Proceedings of the Dedicatory Service in Founders’ Day Report, October 16, 1941, MS, BYU Archives.

19. Utah Economic and Business Review, December 1974, p. 58, citing 1940 U.S. Government census data.

20. E. L. Thorndike, “The Origin of Superior Men,” Scientific Monthly 56 (May 1943): 424-33; “Utah as Birthplace of Scientists,” Improvement Era 43 (October 1940): 606.

© 2005 Deseret Book Company.