Thursday, January 6, 2011

Samuel B Thatcher: President of the East Tennessee Conference

[The following article about Samuel Baugh Thatcher appeared in the Latter Day Saint Southern Sar February 25th, 1899.]
This week The Star presents, under "Our Conference Presidents" Elder Samuel B. Thatcher, who presides over the East Tennessee conference.
President Thatcher was born on the 11th day of January 1872 at the beautiful city of Logan where he acquired a good education, and at the time of his call to preach the gospel, held the position of deputy treasurer for Cache county, under the Hon. A. F. Farr.
Elder Thatcher has had a share of the gloom that seems to be the part and portion of mankind having had to part with his beloved wife in May of 1896. [Samuel married Vernie Isabel Lufkin of September 5, 1894. She died in the same month as their son Samuel Thatcher was born and died, which leads me to believe her death was a complication of childbirth].
He left home on March 15, 1895, and on his arrival in the south, was assigned to labor in the Virginia conference, where he remained until taken down with a severe attack of malarial fever, necessitating a return home [in late July 1895], where he remained until June 15, 1897, when he again left home for the mission field. [Samuel's illness allowed him to be at home with his wife when she died.]
Arriving here he was then sent to the East Tennessee conference where he has continued laboring in various capacities until the annual conference of Aug. 27, 1898, where he was selected to preside over the conference, which position he has filled with signal (sic) credit to himself and all with whom he comes in contact. His methods of business are excellent, showing great promptness in making reports or other matters pertaining to his conference. The reports from his conference also indicate good judgment in organizing his force to the best possible advantage. His faculty to make and hold friends is par excellence and in view of the time drawing near for his return home to loved ones his many friends are sorrowful. President Thatcher will leave for home about March 1 [1899] and will be succeeded by Elder W. E. Dawson, who, with F. B. Hammond, have labored in the capacity of counselors.
The conference reports as published weekly indicate that the East Tennessee conference is in the front ranks in every respect, and much credit is due the retiring president for this condition. May she so continue is the wish of The Star.
[After his return home he married Maud Bowen on June 28, 1899 in Logan, Utah, and the couple moved to Fanklin, Idaho. They had two children. Their first was a son they named Samuel Bowen Thatcher who was born on September 11, 1900 in Franklin ID, but died that same month. After moving back to Logan, they had a daughter they named Jayne Adeline Thatcher who was born December 14, 1902.
Having moved back to Logan, Utah Samuel secures a job as a railroad mail clerk in March 1903. He must have then gone to school, though I can't find which one, and eventually graduates with a degree in Dentistry in 1912.
In 1917, he shows up in the history of the Fortieth Division of the U. S. Army as a First Lieutenant in the Dental Corps.  And later he shows up as a member of Delta Sigma Delta, an international fraternity for Dentists, in 1920 living in Logan, Utah.
He also joined the American Legion where he serves a term as President ending in 1920. At the end of his term he won an election as a Logan city judge in November 1920. In 1922 he serves as the American Legion Chaplain.
Sometime after 1923 he and his family moved to Los Angeles where in 1930 he lived with his wife, daughter (who had married a man from California), and two grandchildren. He goes back and forth between Logan and LA so often that if it wasn't for his daughter living with him I would have thought I had two different people with the same name, age and married to women with the same name. Anyway, he doesn't stay in California long. In 1932, he is back in Logan where he was elected Vice President of the Utah State Dental Association.
Samuel died December 8, 1941 back in Los Angeles, California. He was buried in the Logan City Cemetery in Cache County, Utah.]

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