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David J. Evans letter to David John

 Item — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MSS 3995

Scope and Contents

Materials include a letter from David J. Evans to David John, counselor in the Utah Stake presidency, dated August 27, 1879. In it, Evans resigns as bishop in Lehi, Utah, because of health concerns.


  • 1879 August 27


Conditions Governing Access

Original restricted. Digital copy available online for public use. Transcription of original also available for public use.

Conditions Governing Use

It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances. Permission to publish material from David J. Evans letter to David John must be obtained from the Supervisor of Reference Services and/or the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Board of Curators.

Biographical History

David J. Evans (1804-1883) was a member of the Quorum of the Seventy and served for twenty-eight years as a bishop for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

David J. Evans was born on October 27, 1804, in Cecil, Maryland, to parents Israel Evans and Abigail Alexander. As a young boy he moved to Pennsylvannia with his parents and lived there until 1826. There he married Mary Beck on July 25, 1826. They had seven children together, five of whom lived to maturity. Evans also eventually married six other wives: Margaret Christine Holm, Rebecca Coleman, Edna Hinchcliff, Clymenia Shaw, Sarah Thornton, and Barbara Ann Ewell. After marrying, David and Abigail purchased a farm in Richland County, Ohio, and moved there to live and work. In Ohio, on April 6, 1833, Evans was baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and in that same month Evans sold the farm to fund his missionary work.

In 1834, Evans joined Zion's Camp and was ordained to the First Quorum of the Seventy by Joseph Smith and Sidney Rigdon. On May 20, 1836, he left Ohio with a company of Church members to go to Missouri. He settled in Shoal Creek, Missouri with his family, but in December, he left Missouri because of the mob violence. After resettling in Payson, Illinois, Evan's wife Abigail, died. Evans then moved to Nauvoo where he married Barbara Ann Ewell on November 23, 1841. After emmigrating to Salt Lake Valley, Evans was called as a bishop in Lehi, Utah, on February 15, 1851. Evans was bishop for twenty-eight years until he requested to be released because of his failing health. During this time he was a member of the first Utah legislature, the Colonel of the Militia, and the Major of the Lehi Military District.

Evans died on June 23, 1883, in Lehi, Utah.

Biographical History

David John (1833-1908) was the stake president of the Utah Stake for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and a member of Brigham Young University's Board of Trustees.

David John was born on January 29, 1833, in Puncheston, Wales, to parents Mary Williams and Daniel John. He was raised in a Baptist family and was studying for the ministry when he joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1847. His parents were adamantly opposed to his joining the Church, so following the advice of Orson Pratt (an Apostle in the Church) he stopped associating with the Church until 1856. In the June of 1856, he served a mission in Wales and became the president of the Flintshire Conference in December. From 1857 to 1858 he served as a counselor in the presidency of the Welsh Mission.

He married Mary Wride on February 8, 1860 in Cardiff, Wales, and they had nine children together. In 1861, John and his wife emigrated to Utah with their family and in 1862 John was called as a counselor in the Provo 3rd Ward. He served in this bishopric for fifteen years. From 1877 to 1901, John was a counselor in the Utah Stake, which covered all of Utah County at the time. In 1883, he became the presiding bishop of Utah Stake as well. John also served as the Utah Stake Sunday School Superintendent from 1865 to 1893. In addition to his work for the Church, John worked as a school teacher and trustee of the Provo district schools for fifteen years. He was also a partner of the lumber business Smoot and John. John also married Jane Cree in 1865 and in 1887 was imprisoned temporarily for his beliefs about and participation in polygamy. From 1901 to 1908 John served as the president of Utah Stake and he was also a member of the Brigham Young University Board of Trustees during that time.

John died on December 24, 1908, in Provo, Utah.


2 folders (0.02 linear ft.)



Custodial History

L. Tom Perry Special Collections purchased the letter from Lyndon Cook in 2001.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Purchased; Lyndon Cook; 2001.


Utah and the American West and LDS cultural, social, and religious history (19th Century Mormon and Western Manuscripts collection development policy 1.V, November 2013).

Existence and Location of Copies

Digital copy available online. Transcription available in Folder 2.

Processing Information

Processed; Rose Frank; 2011.


Register of David Evans letter to David John
Rose Frank
2011 June 18
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English in Latin script.

Repository Details

Part of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Repository

1130 HBLL
Brigham Young University
Provo Utah 84602 United States