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Emmeline B. Wells letter to Mary A. White, 1895 January 14

 Item — Folder: 3
Identifier: MSS SC 48 Item 15
Image of Emmeline B. Wells letter to Mary A. White
Image of Emmeline B. Wells letter to Mary A. White

Scope and Contents

Letter from Emmeline B. Wells, to Mary A. White, President of the Beaver County Woman's Suffrage Association. Letter is written on letterhead for the National Woman's Relief Society, for which Wells was secretary at the time. Contents of the letter include resolving an issue with dues, presumably for the Relief Society, and advice from Wells to White on current issues related to the suffrage movement, including the danger of siding with a specific political party and being wary of women who are extremists in their views and actions. Dated January 14, 1895.


  • 1895 January 14


Conditions Governing Access

Originals are restricted due to condition. Patrons are to use photocopies and photoduplications.

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

Emmeline Blanche Woodward Wells (1828-1921) was a women's rights advocate, the fifth president of the Relief Society of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and the chief editor of the journal Women's Exponent.

Emmeline B. Wells was born on February 29, 1828, at Petersham, Massachusetts to parents David Woodward and Deiadama Hare. When she was four years old her father died, which meant she and her siblings were raised mainly by their mother. In 1842, she joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. As a child, Wells was very well-educated and began teaching in her early teenage years. She married James Harris at age fifteen, they had one son who died shortly after his birth, but Harris deserted Wells. Wells then married Bishop Newel K. Whitney in 1849 and they had two children. When he died in 1850, Wells raised her children on her own in the Salt Lake Valley, where they had immigrated to in 1848.

In 1852, she married Daniel Wells and had three more children. She continued teaching while in Utah and she also became involved in civic affairs such as suffrage and women's rights. Wells was the chief editor of the women's rights journal Women's Exponent. She was also friends with famous suffragettes Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony and in 1899 she was invited by the International Council of Women to speak at its London meeting as a United States representative. Wells served as the general president of the Relief Society of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from 1910 to 1921.

She died on April 25, 1921 in Salt Lake City, Utah.


1 folder (0.01 linear ft.) : 3 p. ; 28 x 21 cm

Language of Materials


Existence and Location of Originals

Originals are located in Folder 2-3, and Oversize folder 4.

Existence and Location of Copies

Photocopies and photoduplications of the originals are also available in Folder 1.

Existence and Location of Copies

Transcription available in Folder 5.

Repository Details

Part of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Repository

1130 HBLL
Brigham Young University
Provo Utah 84602 United States