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Berrett, William E. (William Edwin) (1902-1993)



  • Existence: 1902 - 1993

Biographical History

William E. Berrett (1902-1993) was an attorney, professor and administrator, author and patriarch for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Utah.

William Edwin Berrett was born to Heber H. Berrett and Ellen E. Walker in Midvale, Utah on June 2, 1902. After graduating from Jordan High School, he received his bachelor's degree from the University of Utah in 1924 and worked as a principal of the LDS Seminary in Roosevelt, Utah. In 1926, while working on his law degree at the University of Utah, he married Eleanore Louise Callister in the Salt Lake Temple.

After graduating with a law degree, Berrett worked in a variety of positions between 1935-1947. This included being an editor for the Church Education System's curriculum development department, an author of two books ("The Restored Church" and "Readings in LDS Church History"), a special prosecutor for Utah's Office of Price Administration, an assistant U.S. Attorney in Alaska, opening a private practice in Salt Lake City, and serving as a member of the Deseret Sunday School Union's General Board. In 1947, he was hired by Brigham Young University to serve as a faculty member in two departments (Church History and the ROTC) and was shortly after appointed to serve as the Vice President of BYU and the CES in 1953. He continued to serve in the Seminary and Institute programs of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints until they were separated from BYU in 1965, and after serving as the head of Seminaries, Institutes, and all the non-BYU Church-run colleges, he finally retired in 1972 to work on a three-volume history of the Church Educational System which was later published in 1988 as the one-volume history "A Miracle in Week-day Education." This all happened while he and his wife raised their four children.

After retirement, Berrett finished his life serving as a patriarch in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. December 2, 1993, he passed away in Utah.

Wikipedia, via WWW March 24, 2017 (William E. Berrett; b. June 2, 1902; d. Dec. 2, 1993; Graduated from Jordan High and University of Utah; Worked as an assistant U.S. Attorney in Alaska; Had private practice in Salt Lake City; Worked developing the CES's curriculum, serving as a special prosecutor in the Office of Price Administration, etc.; Served as VP of BYU and CES starting in 1953 working in the Church history and ROTC departments; retired in 1972; authored "A Miracle in Week-day Education" and three-volume history of CES; finished his life serving as a Patriarch of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints), via WWW March 24, 2017 (William Edwin Berrett; parents were Heber H. Berrett and Ellen E. Walker; wife's maiden name was Elanor Louise Callister; had four children)

His The Latter-day Saints, c1985:CIP t.p. (William E. Berrett)

LC data base, 11/9/84(hdg.: Berrett, William Edwin; usage: William E. Berrett)

William E. Berrett papers, 1836-1993(William E. Berrett; William Edwin; born June 2, 1902 in Midvale, Utah; practiced law in Alaska and Utah; was a faculty professor at Brigham Young University from 1947 until 1972; authored and edited various publications; served as Vice President of BYU and worked in various administrative roles in the Church Education System from 1953 to 1972; served as a patriarch in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; died December 2, 1993 in Utah)

Found in 6 Collections and/or Records:

William E. Berrett correspondence

Identifier: MSS SC 2785
Scope and Contents

Approximately 50 items of handwritten and typewritten correspondence. The materials deal with his work with the Mormon Church educational system, his research on various Mormon Church topics, and with personal matters.

Dates: 1953-1957

William E. Berrett papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MSS 1955
Scope and Contents Contains correspondence, speeches, a biography, and an autobiography. The materials relate to Berrett's work with the Utah Committee on Children and Youth, his research on The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' relationships with African-Americans, and various documents pertaining to his career as a professor at Brigham Young University, his time in Fairbanks, Alaska. Also included is Berett's autobiography and a biography of B. H. Roberts, the Mormon historian. Materials dated...
Dates: 1836-1993

William E. Berrett papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: UA 889
Scope and Contents Contains minutes, correspondence, reports, course outlines, newsletters, speeches, pamphlets, lists, recommendations, and Division of Religion faculty applications collected by William Berrett in his role as the Vice President of Religion and CES administrator. Correspondence concerns the Student Military Relations Committee, faculty, LDS Institute assistant administrators Alma P. Burton, Boyd K. Packer, and Dale T. Tingey, and other Church Educational System matters. Materials dated 1938 to...
Dates: 1938-1968

Richards Durham letter, Thomas Jerold Stirland statement, and symposium transcript

 File — Folder 1: [Barcode: 31197230342609]
Identifier: MSS 807
Scope and Contents

Typewritten letter, statement, and a transcript. Durham writes to William E. Berrett, "administrator of L.D.S. Seminaries and Institutes," accusing Berrett of destroying his career because Durham was critical of the educators in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Thomas Jerold Stirland, of the "Ogden L.D.S. Institute," defends himself against charges that he was disloyal to the Church educators. The symposium was held in Logan, Utah, and dealt with Church education.

Dates: 1950-1969

My story

 File — Folder 1: [Barcode: 31197230324482]
Identifier: MSS SC 2517
Scope and Contents

Typewritten autobiography. Berrett tells about his life, about his career, and about the books he wrote. Also included are photocopies of letters received by Berrett from many prominent Mormon Church leaders.

Dates: 1924-1971

Oral history interview with William E. Berrett

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: UA OH 69
Scope and Contents Interview by Thomas E. Cheney with William E. Berrett concerning the history of the Church Education System, particularily the Seminary and Institutes program. Also speaks on the development of religious instruction at BYU, his experiences with Ernest Wilkinson, and the development of Brigham Young University from 1948-1971. Also discusses the discontinuance of social units at BYU, the organization of BYU wards, and the establishment of the ROTC program. Includes transcript and sound...
Dates: 1982

Additional filters:

Letters 5
Colleges and Universities 3
Education 3
Latter Day Saint authors -- Correspondence 3
Autobiographies 2