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Wilford Woodruff family letters

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MSS 8173

Scope and Contents

Letters written between Wilford Woodruff and members of his family. Letters are to his wife Emma S. Woodruff and to his children Clara and Blanch. Also included are letters from Emma Woodruff to Mr. and Mrs. O. C. Beebe as well as letters between Emma Woodruff and her daughter Clara. Letters talk about family activities and contain advice from Wilford Woodruff to his family. One letter is written shortly before Woodruff died in San Francisco. Another is written while Wilford Woodruff was in hiding during the polygamy raids of the 1880s. The letters date from 1877 to 1909. Also included are photocopies of the letters which include handwritten transcriptions of them. A handwritten index of the letters is also included.


  • 1877-1909


Conditions Governing Access

Originals restricted. Photocopies and transcriptions available for public use.

Conditions Governing Use

It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances. Permission to use material from this collection must be obtained from Reference Services at

Biographical / Historical

Wilford Woodruff was born March 1, 1807. He was raised in Connecticut. Woodruff was a miller by trade. He joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1833 and served two missions before being ordained an Apostle in 1839. As a member of the Quorum of the Twelve, he completed four additional missions, presided over the temple in St. George, Utah, and served six years as Church Historian. He was sustained as Church President on April 7, 1889. As President of the Church, he dedicated temples in Salt Lake City and Manti, Utah, oversaw the organization of the Genealogical Society, and reemphasized the value of historical record keeping. He also received a revelation that the Latter-day Saints should cease the practice of plural marriage. In 1890, he wrote the Manifesto, testifying that the Church had ceased teaching the practice of plural marriage. Woodruff died in San Francisco on September 2, 1898.


3 folders (0.11 linear ft.)

Language of Materials



Arranged chronologically. Photocopies and handwritten transcriptions are also arranged chronologically.

Custodial History

The letters were passed down through the Woodruff family to George E. Maycock Jr. George E. Maycock Jr .left them to his son George E. Maycock III. George E. Maycock's wife received the letters upon his death. She donated the letters to the L. Tom Perry Special Collections in March 2013.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated; Maycock family; March 2013.


19th Century Western and Mormon Manuscripts.

Existence and Location of Copies

Photocopies and handwritten transcriptions by the donor available in folder 2. Typed transcriptions created in-house available in folder 3.

Processing Information

Processed; J. Gordon Daines III; March 2013.

Processing Information

Processed; Megan Hall; April 2, 2021; Transcription added.

Register of the Wilford Woodruff family letters
J. Gordon Daines III
2013 March 19
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