LDS Tithing History, October 7, 1897

LDS Tithing Chronology

-- October 7, 1897
[Franklin D. Richards] Priesthood meeting Assembly Hall Presidency Apostles, Patriarchs, Pres[iden]ts of Stakes, Bishops counselors, High Councilors, &c at 10 am ... Importance of Tithing & donations reviewed the erroneous policy that is tending to exhaust us & to run us out of the country financially instead of mobocratically . . . .
Assembly Hall Every Pres[iden]t of a Stake is expected to know about the tithing of his stake and be able to sign the tithing reports annually with intelligence knowledge This subject has been faithfully dwelt upon during this conference. Some complain the way tithing is expended for example Saltair stated about Garfield, Big Cottonwood, Warm and Hot Springs, and Saltaire has been great advertiser refered to Bar liquor selling, & to immoral practices. Referred to efforts to regain Garfield, and to build R Road to Ophir & then from Milford they will help extend He descanted on the departure of R. Roads, Lake shore properties &c out of our hands & prospectively uprooting of our whole people from this land Financially instead of mobacratically. He asked the kindly charitable consideration of the brethren our interests are your interests & your interests are our interests & we are doing the best we can & need your sympathies. (1)

-- Jan 4, 1898
[Heber J. Grant] President Lorenzo Snow . . . There are two things required of us as apostles, a perfect union among ourselves, and a perfect union with the First Presidency. If this [is brought about, may not need to die but be translated] . . . . In days gone by there were reports made to the saints and these were appreciated and it was calculated to inspire confidence. Today many men will not pay their tithings because they feel that the money is not used in the proper way. I have prayed that Pres[iden]t Woodruff might live to see the debts of the Church all paid. . . . (2)

-- Jan 5, 1898
[Heber J. Grant] ... Marriner W. Merrill had felt where ignorance was bliss it was folly to be wise. Personally I have never believed in the wisdom of going into debt, neither have I felt that it was wisest for the Church to run into debt. The Church was in easy circumstances financially in President Young's day and also in the days of Pres[iden]t John Taylor. I feel that the Church should be lending money and not borrowing. If there is any danger of the tithing of the Church being bonded in the plan for relief which is in the hands of Frank J. Cannon, I feel that when it comes to the knowledge of the saints that the tithing is bonded to pay interest and debts that the tithing will stop coming in to a great extent. I feel that the Church should stop going into debt and do all possible to get out of debt, and have money on hand to loan. I feel that Pres[iden]t Cannon is virtually at the head of the Church today, and is the responsible man, as Pres[iden]t Woodruff in his advanc
ed years leans on him in all matters . . . Pres[iden]t Snow explained that there was the very best of feelings existing between him and Prest. Woodruff, also Pres[iden]t Cannon and Pres[iden]t Smith, but Pres[iden]t Cannon knows that I do not approve of his methods of running into debt. Nearly all of his schemes where the Church has run into debt there has been a failure, and I have felt that the Lord did not approve of our running into debt personally or for the Church. The Prophet Joseph got into debt and the Lord told him that He did not approve of going into debt even to get the money with which to erect the Temple. I feel sure He does not want us to go into debt to build R. Roads, Power Plants, Saltair Resorts, etc. I feel that we should ask the Presidency to give us information on the finances of the Church. There was considerable informal chat at the meeting this afternoon and nearly all of us said something. We seemed pretty well united that the right thing was for u
s to ask for information on the financial condition of the Church. The fact that Frank J. Cannon had a large salary from the Power Co. at Ogden and that the Church had to pay the interest on the company’s bonds, that Pres[iden]t Cannon had said the Church was so deeply in debt that the apostles and others who are drawing from the tithings will have to stop were talked over, and the question came up as to whether the salaries that were coming to men in cases(?) where the Church was carrying the companies would not be stopped before those of the elders engaged in the work of the Church. We have had a good time in our meetings today and I rejoice to have been present. (2)

1 - Diary Excerpts of Franklin D. Richards, 1887-1897
2 - Diary Excerpts of Heber J. Grant,

Mormon Tithing Timeline /Chronology