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Cluff, Benjamin, Jr., 1858-1948

 Person

Dates

  • Existence: 1858-1948

Biographical History

Benjamin Cluff, Jr. (1858-1948) was an educator and businessman in Utah and California. He was principal of Brigham Young Academy and president of Brigham Young University from 1892 to 1903.

Benjamin Cluff, Jr. was born in Provo, Utah on February 7, 1958 to Benjamin Cluff and Mary Ellen Foster. In 1877, Cluff enrolled in Brigham Young Academy and began working as a janitor to pay for his tuition. However, soon after he received a call to serve a mission to the Sandwich Islands. Returning to Utah in 1882, Cluff was offered a teaching job as an instructor of mathematics at Brigham Young Academy by Karl G. Maeser. In 1886, he attended the University of Michigan and received his Bachelor of Science in 1890. Upon his return to Utah, he became the assistant principal of the Brigham Young Academy.

Cluff was married to Mary Jane John in 1883, and later entered into marriage with Harriet Cullimore in 1886, and Florence Mary Reynolds in 1898. He had twenty-one children with his three wives.

Under Cluff's direction, plans for a new building were begun and students selected white and blue as the school colors. Cluff returned to the University of Michigan for a master's degree in 1893, and became the principal of the academy when he returned to Utah. In 1895 Cluff's title was changed to president, and heads of departments were named principals. He led an expedition of students to South America in 1900 for the purpose of archaeological research. On October 3, 1903, the school became Brigham Young University. In December, Cluff resigned and took a position as superintendent of a rubber plantation in Mexico. The Cluffs returned to the United States in 1924 and opened a store in Southern California. Cluff died June 14, 1948, in Redondo Beach, California.

Citation

Harold B. Lee Library. Dept. of Archives and Manuscripts. Register of the Benjamin Cluff, Jr. diaries, 1986: p. 1 (b. Feb. 7, 1858; d. June 16, 1948; former Pres. of Brigham Young Univ.)

Ancestry.com, June 15, 2011 (Benjamin Cluff; Benjamin Cluff Jr.; b. Feb. 7, 1858 in Provo, Utah; d. June 14, 1948 in Los Angeles, Calif.)

Brigham Young University High School website, June 15, 2011: Benjamin Cluff Jr. page (teacher, third principal of Brigham Young Academy, first president of Brigham Young University, academic innovator and explorer; parents were Benjamin Cluff Sr. and Mary Ellen Foster Cluff; librarian of the Coalville City Library; mathematics instructor at Brigham Young Academy; became principal of the academy in 1892; led expedition to Central America from 1900 to 1902; resigned as president in 1903; later ran a rubber plantation in Mexico and a grocery business in Calif.)

Benjamin Cluff Jr. website, June 15, 2011 (earned bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of Michigan)

Mormon Missionary Diaries website, via WWW, Dec. 20, 2012: Benjamin Cluff, Jr. (1858-1948; b. Feb 7, 1858 in Provo, Utah; parents: Benjamin Cluff and Mary Ellen Foster; 1877, enrolled at Brigham Young Academy, worked as janitor; Sandwich Islands call, 1882; teaching job in mathematics, 1886; studied at University of Michigan, bachelor's degree 1890; assistant principal at Brigham Young Academy, m. Mary Jane John, 1883; m. Harriet Cullimore, 1886; m. Florence Mary Reynolds, 1898; twenty-one children; Academy moved to new building, adopted white and blue, Cluff earned master's degree, 1893; principal of Brigham Young Academy, 1895; president, left on South American expedition, 1900; October 3, 1903 had Academy name changed to Brigham Young University; superintendence rubber plantation in Mexico; 1924, store in Southern California; d. June 14, 1948 in Redondo Beach, Calif.)

Found in 37 Collections and/or Records:

Academy Fund Day letter

 File — Folder: 1
Identifier: UA 598
Scope and Contents Form letter created by George Q. Cannon and Benjamin Cluff announcing "Academy Fund Day," in order to solicit contributions for the Brigham Young Academy.
Dates: 1899

Annual report of the principal of the Brigham Young Academy : to the Board of Trustees and Stake Board of Education, for the sixteenth academic year

 Item — Folder: 1
Identifier: UA 326
Scope and Contents Report by Benjamin Cluff on the operations of Brigham Young Academy during the 1891-1892 school year. Includes information on the academy's administration, curriculum, and facilities.
Dates: 1991-1992

Benjamin Cluff Jr. Annual Lecture records

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: UA 1074
Scope and Contents Materials include a program from the inaugural Benjamin Cluff Jr. Annual Lecture, the featured essay for 2003 and a newspaper article about Chieko N. Okazaki's inaugural addressas well as programs and recordings of addresses given as part of the annual lecture. Dated 2003.
Dates: 2003

Brigham Young Academy student enrollment registers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: UA 219
Scope and Contents Collection includes registers of student enrollment containing information on home address, parents, Provo address, church membership and age. Also contains enrollment slips from Benjamin Cluff, Brigham Young Academy treasurer.
Dates: 1876-1892

Brigham Young Academy term record

 Collection — Folder: 1
Identifier: UA 220
Scope and Contents Collection includes term records of students enrolled at Brigham Young Academy.
Dates: 1884 January 28

George H. Brimhall professional papers

 Collection — Box: 1
Identifier: UA 72
Scope and Contents Contains speeches, literary compositions, an autobiography, class notes and notebooks on philosophy of education, notes from speeches, an 1879 account of student tuition to the Young Men's Academy at Spanish Fork, Utah, and records of tuition accounts when Brimhall served as district superintendent of Utah County schools.
Dates: 1872-1926

Benjamin Cluff diaries

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MSS 1667
Scope and Contents Contains four diaries and their respective transcripts covering the period from 1881-1909 and detailing Cluff's time as a student at Brigham Young Academy and the University of Michigan, as well as his subsequent appointment as President of the Academy. Also describes his activities and experiences as a plantation owner in Tabasco, Mexico.
Dates: 1881-1909

Benjamin Cluff diary

 Item — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MSS 3076
Abstract Contains the original 1901 diary of Benjamin Cluff kept during the Brigham Young Academy expedition to South America.
Dates: 1901

Benjamin Cluff letter

 Item — Folder: 1
Identifier: MSS 6070
Scope and Contents Letter from Benjamin Cluff, Jr. to John M. Cannon, concerning the selling of Cluff's interest in the Giles mine, 1902.
Dates: 1902

Benjamin Cluff letter to Ole H. Berg

 Item — Folder: 1
Identifier: MSS SC 2922
Scope and Contents Invitation to O. H. Berg, bishop of the Provo 1st Ward (Latter-day Saint), to attend groundbreaking ceremonies for a building to house preparatory and missionary schools on the Brigham Young University campus.
Dates: 1903