[Apostle Rudger Clawson Diary] Salt Lake City. Cloudy and cool. In order that the Presidency might have the facts before them, I have been working assiduously all day and into the night (to 11 p.m.) to obtain what would be the closing entries in the trustee-in-trust's books. My guide was the trial balance taken Nov. 1, 1901. Taking all the accounts as scattered through the ledger showing enormous balances, I closed one into another and obtained the following results:
Loss and gain
Nevada ranch acct.
Bills rec. sundry notes
Deseret News building acct.
Utah Sugar cap. stock
Carrington lot acct.
Monroe ranch acct.
Inland Crystal Salt Co. cap. stock
Mons Peterson's ranch
Revenue acct. (including and comprehending cash and produce tithing, dividends, rents, interest recd., &c.
Bills payable, sundry notes
Amt. due sundry persons
Jackson County Temple donation
Liverpool office, acct. drafts
I then closed loss and gain, and expense accts. into revenue acct., and obtained as the final closing entries, the following results:
Assets (as above)
Liabilities (as above)
It will be seen from the above showing, as set forth in the books of the trustee-in-trust, that if the assets were turned into cash and the liabilities paid off, the church would have a surplus of $27,741.90, whereas the report furnished by the auditing committee shows that the assets of the church exceed the liabilities by $881,791.82. The above statement will be submitted to the First Presidency at the earliest possible moment for their consideration, and I hope favorable action, looking to the closing up of the present books and the opening of a new set. (1)
-- Wednesday, Jan 8, 1902
[Apostle Rudger Clawson Diary] Salt Lake City. Foggy and cool; regular London weather. 11:30 a.m. Apostle M. W. Merrill was speaking when I came in from a meeting of the board of directors of the Utah Light and Power Co. (Apostle Teasdale had spoken.) Had been speaking of tithes and offerings. Said he was not in favor, as a rule, in going to the saints for donations. Some people, when crowded in this way, made a deduction from their tithing. Within recent years $20,000 had been solicited from the people of Cache Valley to build an addition to the B. Y. College, Logan, and there is still some eleven or twelve thousand dollars due and unpaid, and it is difficult to reach. He thought that a good way to get in large donations would be to encourage the saints to pay individually a small amount each month with regularity and precisionâ""Little drops of water constantly falling wear away the stone." Spoke of the evil of going to law as between members of the church and said that s
ome of the brethren were trying
to force him into the courts over a water difficulty; he was trying to avert trouble in this way; didn't think the brethren ought to go to law; the gentiles used to be willing to submit their grievances to the church courts. Recess taken until 2 p.m.
2 p.m. Continuation of conference. Apostle Cowley was the first speaker. Topics treated. Dwelt upon the moral conditions among our young people. The spirit actuating them seems in a great measure to be antagonistic to the gospel. Feared that the influence of the district school was hurtful to our children. Spoke against secret combinations; referred to a young man, member of a secret benefit society, who had it in for Brother [Brigham H.] Roberts, because he had spoken in condemnatory terms of secret orders. Brother Cowley thought we ought to use our utmost influence against them. Spoke of Freemasonry as being a counterfeit of the true masonry of the Latter-day Saints. Said he thought great care ought to be exercised in calling men to positions in the priesthood, being sure in every case that they accept fully in their hearts all the principles of the gospel. Felt pleased that for the present elders going on missions were not ordained seventies. Speaking of the tendency amon
people to go to law, he did not think a case should be kept out of the high council unless it could be adjudicated to the satisfaction of all parties concerned; sometimes forced compromises are effected to the injury of those who are in the right. Felt interested in the preaching of the gospel to the Lamanites and thought it would be well for our young men to study the Spanish language with a view of carrying the gospel to them.
Apostle Woodruff. Topics treated. Rejoiced in the fellowship of his brethren and felt grateful to the Lord for all blessings. Desired a spirit of willingness to go forth and preach the gospel, when called, or to labor in the stakes of Zion. Felt that the Lord is watching over his church. Took breakfast with Senator [Thomas] Kearns the other day, who said that if the proposed constitutional amendment were loaded down with other features, such as fornication and adultery, as contemplated by him, it would never get through the committee room. Referred briefly to the colonization of the Big Horn country and said that the people there had been greatly blessed of the Lord, through railroad contracts taken. Steps should be taken to furnish employment to newcomers in our midst.
Apostle Clawson. Topics treated. Rejoiced in his testimony of the gospel and in the priesthood and apostleship. Felt that all the meetings thus far had been intensely interesting and instructive; every word spoken was timely and appropriate and like a costly jewel set in a crown. Was in strict harmony with the sentiments expressed. Felt that some plan should be instituted looking to improved conditions in the quorums of the priesthood. We are not in such perfect and absolute touch with them as are the authorities with the M[utual] I[mprovement] Associationsâ"they work to a definite plan; we do not, except in the case of the Seven Presidents of Seventies. While he rejoiced in the good work being accomplished by the Mutual Improvement organizations, he did not feel that they should be fostered to the hurt and neglect of the priesthood. One often hears of special meetings, conferences, and conventions of our auxiliary associations, but seldom of a conference of the high priest
elders or lesser priesthood in any of the stakes of Zion. He conceded the point that the obligation to look after these matters rested upon presidents of stakes, but they were not doing itâ"at least in many instances. There was no uniformity of action; some plan should be adopted that would bring about better results.
[Apostle Clawson] Said that he was now busily engaged in making preparations to close the books of the trustee-in-trust [as of] Dec. 31, 1901, and to open a new set for Jan. 1, 1902, which would involve a good deal of labor. Spoke of conditions that existed some three years ago when the First Presidency were totally unacquainted with the financial status of the church through lack of correct and full reports. He had sought to supply this want and had been enabled through the blessing of the Lord not only to put Pres. Snow and President Smith with their counselors in absolute touch with financial conditions but also the quorum of apostles. In speaking of this matter the other day to the Presidency, he gave a simple example to show the present deplorable condition of the books of the trustee-in-trust, about as follows: suppose, said he, that President Smith as president of Z.C.M.I. should instruct Thos. G. Webber, supt., and A. W. Carlson, sec., to close the books of the
institution and report at the next meeting, and suppose further that they had carried out the wish so expressed, and in submitting their report casually observed that the books were out over $800,000, or, in other words, showed a deficit in assets to that amount. Would there not be consternation among the stockholders and directory, if not a panic? He further remarked that it is just as necessary for the church to have its books in correct form as Z.C.M.I. or, in fact, any mercantile house or business concern, and yet the trustee-in-trust's books today show a shortage in assets to the extent of $882,000. Alluded to some remarks that had been made and rejoiced that he, like his brethren, had been wellborn and was deeply impressed by the fact that the brother who had been born into the world through a pure parentage, by marrying a woman who was tainted with the blood of Cain, brought a curse upon his posterity in shutting them out from the blessings of the house of God.
Hyrum M. Smith. Topics treated. Felt that his selection as an apostle might properly be taken as a compliment to his father, or perhaps to his grandfather, and was not due to any worthiness in himself. He desired the spirit of discernment and faith that he might have wisdom in choosing brethren and sisters for office and in healing the sick. Referred to secret orders and said that a large number of the employees of Z.C.M.I. belonged to that class of organizations. Spoke of the lack of interest and faithfulness in the quorums of the priesthood. He differed a little, he said, with Brother Teasdale, who in speaking of Brother Grant and his companions, said they ought not to separate as they might be killed. Well, what if they were killed, they would not be the first and doubtless would not be the last; we lack faithâ"at least he did.
Minutes were read and approved. Benediction by Apostle Teasdale. (1)
1 - Stan Larson (editor), A Ministry of Meetings: The Apostolic diaries of Rudger Clawson, Signature Books in association with Smith Research Associates, Salt Lake City, 1993
LDS History Chronology: Z.C.M.I
Mormon Timeline: Z.C.M.I