Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Andrew Jenson's Church Chronology

My mother gave me a copy of Andrew Jenson's Church Chronology during a visit this summer. It belonged to her father and was published in 1914. The first edition was published in 1898, and according to the preface, only 15,000 of the 25,000 books printed were ever sold. So the publisher issued a second edition in 1914 to which were added two supplements; one covering 1899-1905 and another covering 1906-1913. I'm not sure why there were two supplements instead of just one, since this book represents only the second printing.

Going through each index, (the third is supposed to be comprehensive) was an interesting view into what was considered valid Church History. Not only was I surprised to find many I had written about many of the stories in the chronology, but also a few I had not even heard of before now.

[This is not a direct quote of Andrew Jenson's work. I have summarized for space and clarity and corrected some errors]

1806 Jan 18: William E Mclellin was born in Smith County, Tennessee.
1875 Jun 8: George W. Emery of Tennessee was appointed governor of Utah.
1884 Aug 8: James Roskelley was shot and wounded in Lee Valley, Tennessee.
1884 Aug 9: Hensen family was fired upon and forced to flee their home in Decatur County, Tennessee.
1884 Aug 10: Five people died at the Cane Creek Massacre in Lewis County, Tennessee.
1884 Aug 22: The remains of Elders Gibbs and Berry arrive in Salt Lake City.
1884 Sep 22: John Nicholson lectured in Salt Lake City on the causes of the Cane Creek Masaacre.
1884 Nov 13: Eighty LDS emigrants left Chattanooga, Tennessee for Utah and Colorado.
1885 Apr 9: Tennessee passed a law against teaching polygamy.
1885 Apr 13: Elders Gardner and Christensen arrested in Carter County, Tennessee for teaching polygamy.
1885 Nov 9: The case against Elder Christensen was dismissed.
1888 Jul 9: John W. Judd from Tennessee nominated to the supreme court of Utah.
1888 Aug 23: John W. Judd arrived in Utah.
1888 Sep 2: Several Elders were beaten in Bells Station, Tennessee.
1889 Aug 16: Elder Spry was arrested at Chattanooga, Tennessee, after being mistaken for another man.
1894 Mar 30: Elder W. W. Bean held a debate at Sparta, White County, Tennessee.
1898 Dec 1: The LDS Southern Star was first published at Chattanooga, Tennessee.
1900 Feb 27: Elder Brian Ward Peck died in Puntnam County, Tennessee.
1902 Jun 30: Tennessee became part of the new Middle States Mission.
1902 Jul 28: Oliver Workman died. He was born in Tennessee, and was in the Mormon Battalion.
1902 Dec 24: Shadrach Holdaway died. He was born in Tennessee.
1904 Apr 3: James A Allred died. He was born in Tennessee
1905 May 1: Elders Sorenson and Jensen were attacked by a mob in Tennessee.
1905 Aug 10: Elders Miller and Walton were attacked by a mob in Tennessee.

As I write this I'm starting to think about what I would have included, if I were writing a chronology of the LDS Church in Tennessee.


Amy said...

Wonderful resource, as is anything Andrew Jenson was involved in.

And nice to see that you've managed to cover most of the mentioned events!

Are you going to write a chronology of the church in Tennessee? How many other events do you think you would mention as highlights of the history? Any events between 1806 and 1875? :)

BruceCrow said...

Yes, I am going to put together an expanded chronology at least for my own purposes. When I do, I'll post it here. The biggest hole is definately 1806 to 1875 which would include everything for Wilford Woodruff, David Patten, Warren Parish, and the like.

Then, of course, there is a whole lot after 1905 too.

SteveR said...

The nice thing about the Church Chronology is that it allows us to see how one event in church history would lead to another, and people who are never mentioned in other LDS historical works may be mentioned in the Chronology.

You may already know this, but BYU has a searchable online edition of the Chronology at

BruceCrow said...

Thanks for the link Steve,

I knew I had seen it online but the other night when I was writing this I couldn't recall where.

breese1965 said...

Andrew was my Great, Great Grandfather - on my mother's side, (from his first wife). I was fortunate enough to have read his journal & was raised hearing stories about him and my great grandfather, Andrew Jr.
However, I was not raised in the church and am a fairly recent convert. I had no idea Andrew was such a prolific writer until I started researching him. Thank you.

David Roskelley said...

I just purchased a volume:
Church Chronology
Compiled by: Andrew Jenson
Title page says:
Second Edition, Revised and Enlarged
Date at bottom of page: 1899

Preface says 25,000 copies a thorough revision of the first edition . . down to the close of 1898.