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Harvey L. Taylor papers

Identifier: MSS 1593

Scope and Contents

Contains personal journals, writings in personal and family history, tape and disc recordings, yearbooks, and scrapbooks. Materials relate to the educational institutions at which Taylor worked, including Weber Academy and Mesa [Arizona] Schools, the Church Educational System, Gila College, and Brigham Young University. Also contains a few letters and speeches. Materials date from between 1894 and 1983.


  • 1894-1983


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 use material from this collection must be obtained from Reference Services at

Biographical History

Mormon educator and former vice president of Brigham Young University.

"Dr. Harvey L. Taylor, 89, former vice president of Brigham Young University and educator for 52 years, died Tuesday, Nov. 15, 1983, at Utah Valley Hospital, Provo.

He was born Aug. 28, 1894, in Harrisville, to Harvey Daniel and Letty May Saunders Taylor. He married Lucelle Eliza Rhees, May 18, 1916, in the Salt Lake Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. She died April 4, 1977.

He graduated from the University of Utah and Columbia University and was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Law Degree by Arizona State University. He was both a teacher and administrator.

His first teaching positions were in Weber and Summit Counties. In 1928 he was invited to serve as president of Gila Junior College in Thatcher, Ariz. He accepted a position as superintendent of Mesa Union High School in 1933 and later was appointed superintendent of Mesa Union High School and later was appointed superintendent of Mesa Public Schools until 1953.

He was then appointed vice president of Brigham Young University and vice chancellor of the LDS Unified Church School System. Later, when the two organizations were separated, he was appointed to be the administrator of all LDS Church Schools as well as seminaries and institutes.

Dr. Taylor has received many honors including the Silver Beaver award from the Boy Scouts of America along with the 50 years BSA Service Award, Mesa's Most Valuable Citizen Award, BYU Alumni Distinguished Service Award, and the Ricks College Distinguished Service Award. Mesa City named a recreation field after him.

He also received the Arizona Governor's Award of Honor to a Distinguished Citizen for Meritorious Service; the Weber State College Alumni Meritorious Service Award; State of Utah Third Juvenile District Court Distinguished Service Award to Youth and the Honorary Master M-Men Award [from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints] for distinguished service to youth.

A member of the LDS Church, he served for 30 years as a Sunday School teacher and in many leadership positions. When he retired in 1971 after 52 years of service to education, he was commissioned by the LDS Church Board of Education to write the story of LDS Church Schools. He completed the work in 1972.

Survivors include three daughters: Molliemae Taylor Johnson Hatch of Taylor, Ariz.; Dr. Janyce L. Taylor of Provo; Mrs. Reed R. (Betty L.) Rosenberg of Bakersfield, Calif.; 12 grandchildren; 29 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by a son, Dr. Harvey Darrel Taylor."

[Statement excerpted from obituary in the Provo Daily Herald, 17 Nov., 1983]


5 boxes (2.5 linear ft.)

Language of Materials



Arranged in four series: 1. Harvey L. Taylor personal papers, 1894-1983. 2. Harvey L. Taylor education papers, 1915. 3. Harvey L. Taylor career papers, 1921-1972. 4. Harvey L. Taylor retirement papers, undated.

Other Finding Aids

While this finding aid provides only a series level description, a more detailed finding aid is available in print at the L. Tom Perry Special Collections reference desk.

Other Finding Aids

File-level inventory available online.

Custodial History

Collection was donated by the Taylor family to the Brigham Young University Archives after Harvey Taylor's death.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated; Taylor family; post-1983.


Collection provides information on the life and work of a prominent LDS educator and school administrator, thereby suppotying the collecting focus on the historical collections of leading LDS scholars, scientists, historians, etc.

Utah and American West and LDS cultural, social, and religious history (20th Century Western & Mormon Manuscripts collection development policy, 5.VII, 2007).

Related Materials

See also the Brigham Young University vice-presidential records (UA 913) and Harvey L. Taylor papers (MSS 8065).

Separated Materials

The following materials were separated from the collection.

Slide collection (see MSS 8065, approximately 500 slides): In 15 packets: Mesa Arizona High Schools, Provo and Indian Seminaries, Tuba City/Chapel, BYU Folkdancers, Europe, 1964, Mexico Schools, Church College of New Zealand, Hawaii, Western Samoa, Western Samoa, Tonga, Australia and Pacific.

The History of L.D.S. Church Schools, 2 vols. (1971) Compiled by Harvey L. Taylor. Cataloged in the Mss/Ref Collection.

One Hundred Years 1830-1930 Centennial Celebration of the Organization of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. (October 1930) Transferred to Special Collections.

Processing Information

Processed; Dennis Rowley; 1991.

Register of Harvey L. Taylor papers
Dennis Rowley and Susan Corrigan
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.
Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant, 2007-2008

Repository Details

Part of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Repository

1130 HBLL
Brigham Young University
Provo Utah 84602 United States