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Lewis E. Burnham papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MSS 9507

Scope and Contents

The majority of the collection consists of materials used by Lewis E. Burnham to learn the Navajo language for the Navajo Nation mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, including grammar practice, vocabulary lists, translated missionary lessons, scripture translations, and explanations of how gospel concepts differ in context between the languages and cultures. There is a booklet explaining the Navajo religion, as well as one explaining how to talk about baptism since there is no word for it in Navajo. There is also a collection of four fabric visual aids depicting each of the following: a world map, the apostasy and restoration, the plan of life and salvation, and the relationship between the Bible and the Book of Mormon. There is also a set of paper visual aids about various gospel principles. Materials are dated 1954 to 1958.


  • 1954-1958


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

Born August 8, 1932, Lewis E. Burnham served a mission to the Navajo Nations for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints around 1954 to 1956. Later in life, he served as a member of the Provo City Agricultural Commission for several years. As of 2020, he was a resident of Provo, Utah.


1 box (0.5 linear ft.)

1 oversize box (1.66 linear ft.)

Language of Materials



Retained in original order.

Custodial History

Donated by Lew and Gail Burnham in 2019.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated; Lew and Gail Burnham; 2019.


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

Processing Information

Processed: Tayla Boyer; October 15, 2021.

Register of Lewis E. Burnham papers
In Progress
Tayla Boyer
2021 October 15
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