Cannon, George Q. (George Quayle), 1827-1901
- Existence: 1827 - 1901
George Q. Cannon (1827-1901) worked as the Utah Territory Delegate to the United States House of Representative for several years. He also served as a missionary, mission president, and apostle for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
George Q. Cannon was born in Liverpool, England, on January 11, 1827. He was the oldest child of George and Ann Quayle Cannon. The Cannon family sailed to the United States in 1842 after being converted to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and baptized by John Taylor, the husband of George's aunt, Leonora Cannon. Shortly after arriving in Nauvoo, Illinois, George Cannon lost both of his parents. He was raised in John and Leonora Taylor's home and worked as a printer's apprentice.
George Cannon moved west to Utah with the Taylor family, arriving in 1847. Soon after their arrival, George served a mission first in California, and then to the Sandwich Islands, where he mastered the Hawaiian language. He later served as mission president over the California/Oregon, Eastern States, and European missions. He was also commissioned by the church to do work on several different newspapers. In addition, George Cannon was ordained an apostle for the Church in 1859.
In 1862, George Cannon was elected to represent the Utah Territory in the United States Congress. He only served one term in this capacity but in 1872 returned to Washington, D.C., as the Utah Delegate to Congress. He remained a prominent figure in Utah's plea for statehood and as a representative for the church to the federal government for ten years. He left his seat in Congress following the Edmunds Act, which limited the rights of Utah's polygamists. George Cannon was forced into seclusion until 1888 when he surrendered himself and consequently served nearly six months imprisonment in the Utah State Penitentiary for cohabitation.
George Cannon's first (and only legal) marriage was to Elizabeth Hoagland Cannon just following his first mission for the church. She bore him eleven children, six of whom reached adulthood. In 1858, George Cannon took his second wife, Sarah Jane Jenne Cannon, who raised seven children, one of which was adopted. His third wife, Eliza L. Tenney Cannon, had three sons. George Cannon married Martha Telle Cannon in 1868, and eventually nine children came of their union. George Cannon's fifth wife, Emily Hoagland Little Cannon, was sister to Elizabeth Hoagland Cannon. Emily was a widow, and Elizabeth encouraged the match due to concern over her sister's welfare. George Cannon and Emily Hoagland had no children together. Caroline Young Croxall Cannon became George Cannon's sixth and last wife nearly three years after Elizabeth's death. She was a daughter of Brigham Young, and George Cannon's only legal wife during the time they were married. George Cannon adopted her five children from a previous marriage, and together they raised four more children. In all, George Cannon reared thirty-five children (seven of which were adopted), but forty-three are sealed to him eternally.
In 1880, George Cannon became the first counselor in the first presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints under John Taylor. He also served as first counselor under the presidencies of Wilford Woodruff and Lorenzo Snow before his death in 1901, at age seventy-four.
Found in 64 Collections and/or Records:
One folder containing thirty-seven photographic prints from the Utah territorial penitentiary from the 1880s and 1890s, including prisoners incarcerated for practicing polygamy.
Collection contains papers and photographs from the lives of Emmeline B. Wells and Annie Wells Cannon. The papers mostly include biographies, though a pedigree chart and a medal of service are also of note. Most of the photographs are connected to Cannon, with several coming from a large scrapbook. Dated approximately 1877 to 1963.