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Horace G. Whitney letter to Orson F. Whitney, 1914-1917

 File — Box: 3, Folder: 20
Identifier: MSS 15 Series 1 Sub-Series 2
Image of Horace G. Whitney letter to Orson F. Whitney
Image of Horace G. Whitney letter to Orson F. Whitney

Scope and Contents

Materials include correspondence from Orson F. Whitney to his brother Horace G. Whitney, who, at the time, was the business manager of "The Deseret News". In the letters, Horace tells Orson that he needs to condense his manuscript to six hundred pages before they can publish it. Dated 1914-1917.


  • 1914-1917


Conditions Governing Access

Open for public research.

Conditions Governing Use

It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances. Permission to publish material from Orson F. Whitney papers must be obtained from the Supervisor of Reference Services and/or the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Board of Curators.

Biographical / Historical

Orson F. Whitney (1855-1931) was an apostle in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, a writer, poet, and editor.

Orson F. Whitney was born on July 1, 1855, in Salt Lake City, Utah, to Horace K. Whitney and Helen Mar Kimball Whitney. As a young man, Whitney wanted to be an actor and he spent many hours preparing for the stage by studying elocution, fencing, and grammar. However, during General Conference in 1876, Whitney was called to serve in the Eastern States Mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. His mother sold her land and used the money to fund Whitney's mission. While on his mission, Whitney discovered his interest in the Gospel as well as in writing and speaking. He started a regular column of his missionary experiences in the "Salt Lake Herald" under the pen name Iago. In 1878, twenty-three-year-old Whitney was called to serve as the bishop of the Eighteenth Ward, a calling he held for 28 years. In 1906, Whitney was called to be an Apostle in the Church. He also completed three more missions for the Church, including being the president of the European Mission in 1921.

In 1879, Whitney married Zina Beal Smoot and they had 9 children together. Whitney also had two more wives: Mary Minerva Wells and Emma Whitney Wells. During his life, Whitney edited the "Salt Lake Herald," served on the city council, participated in the Home Dramatic Club, engaged in politics, and wrote poetry and books. In 1890, he published his first book, a biography of his grandfather Heber C. Kimball. That same year, Wildford Woodruff and John O. Williams commissioned Whitney to write "History of Utah"; he produced two volumes of the work by 1894 and the third in 1898. He also published a biography of Lorenzo Snow, an autobiography, and several books of poetry including his lengthy epic poem "Elias: An Epic of the Ages."

Whitney died on May 16, 1931, in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Biographical / Historical

Horace Gibson Whitney (1858-1920) was an esteemed member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and a supporter of music and art in his Salt Lake City community.

Horace G. Whitney was born on January 6, 1858 in Salt Lake City, Utah, to parents Horace Kimball Whitney and Mary Cravath. As a child and teenager, Whitney benefitted from a good education and particularly enjoyed reading and writing. He attended college at the University of Deseret (now University of Utah) and graduated in 1873. A couple years after graduating, he began working at the local bank, White & McCornick, where he remained for ten years. He married Marion Mumford Beatie on January 10, 1884 and together they had three children.

Outside of his work and family obligations, Whitney was a member of his community’s debating societies, drama clubs, and literary associations. In fact, in 1880 he and some friends organized the Home Dramatic Club, which he managed. The club produced plays and supported stars who visited Salt Lake City. After this, he managed the Salt Lake Opera Company. In 1887, Lorenzo Snow appointed Whitney as the business manager of Deseret News, a position he held until 1920 when he resigned because of poor health.

Whitney died on October 25, 1920, in Salt Lake City, Utah.


1 folder

Language of Materials


Other Finding Aids

File-level inventory also available at:

Existence and Location of Copies

Transcription available in Box 5.

Repository Details

Part of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Repository

1130 HBLL
Brigham Young University
Provo Utah 84602 United States