Moses Thatcher Sr. papers, 1866-1923  PDF

Overview of the Collection

Thatcher, Moses, 1842-1909.
Moses Thatcher Sr. papers
1866-1923 (inclusive)
4 boxes, (1.6 linear ft. )
Collection Number
Primarily diaries, including those kept as a Mormon missionary in Great Britain (1866-1868); during his presidency of the Cache Stake (1878-1881); his ordination as an L.D.S. Apostle (1879); and his work opening the Mexican Mission for the L.D.S. Church (1880-1881). The other major items are two letterbooks (1888-1890 and 1902-1903). The former is a prime source for background on the Mormon Church's colonization of Mexico. Miscellaneous items include scrapbooks detailing his release as an L.D.S. Apostle for opposing the Church's GOP orientation. In addition, the collection includes some family papers, including an autobiography of Lucy W. Kimball, biographies of several members of the Thatcher family, the missionary journals of Aaron F. Farr (1852-1853), and diaries of Moses Thatcher, Jr.
Utah State University, Merrill-Cazier Library, Special Collections and Archives Division
Special Collections & Archives
Merrill-Cazier Library
Utah State University
Logan, UT
Telephone: 435-797-8248
Fax: 435-797-2880
Access Restrictions

Open to public research.

Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant, 2007-2008

Biographical NoteReturn to Top

Moses Thatcher was born February 2, 1842 in Sangamon County, Illinois the tenth child of Hezekiah Thatcher and Alley Kitchen Thatcher. As members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (often referred to as Mormons), in 1847 Thatcher's family traveled westward across the plains until arrival in Salt Lake City, Utah Territory. In 1849 the Thatcher family moved to California in connection with the Gold Rush. Six years later Thatcher and some of his family returned to Utah. By 1860 Thatcher had taken up residence in the newly settled community of Logan, Utah Territory and began a career as a businessman. During the 1860/1861 year Thatcher attended the University of Deseret (now University of Utah).

From 1866 to 1868 Thatcher served as a missionary in England for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Upon completion of his missionary labors, Thatcher returned to Logan and renewed his business ventures. Some of his business endeavors and positions included; serving as the Director and Secretary of Utah Northern Railroad Company (1870-77), Superintendent of the Logan ZCMI (1870-79), co-founder of Cache County's first bank; the Thatcher Brothers Banking Company in 1883, and Trustee of the Brigham Young College in Logan (1877-97).

Thatcher was also highly involved with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In 1879 he was ordained as a Member of the Council of the Twelve Apostles. Some of his duties as an Apostle included overseeing the church's interests in northern Mexico. During the 1880s he organized, supervised, and purchased land for the Mormon colonization of northern Mexico. During the 1890s Thatcher returned to Logan and became active with the Utah Democratic Party. In 1896 Thatcher was expelled from the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles because of a ‘difference in opinions' and 'misunderstanding' between quorum members concerning his political and religious views. Thatcher died in Logan in 1909.

For further information on Moses Thatcher, Sr. see: Godfrey, Kenneth W., "Moses Thatcher in the Dock: His Trials, The Aftermath, and His Last Days," Journal of Mormon History, Vol. 24 # 1 (Spring 1998), pp. 54-88.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

This collection contains the papers of Moses Thatcher, Sr. and his family spanning the period of 1866 to 1923. This collection contains Moses Thatcher, Sr.'s diaries (in photocopy form, original diaries are in the possession of Brigham Young University), correspondence, papers concerning his family, and other papers. His diaries document his missionary service in Great Britain from 1866 to 1868, his Presidency of the Cache Stake from 1878 to 1881, his ordination as an L.D.S. Apostle in 1879, and his work concerning the opening of the Mexican Mission for the L.D.S. Church and the beginnings of Mormon colonization in northern Mexico. Other items included are Thatcher's two correspondence letter-books (1888-1890 and 1902-1903), a Memoranda Book (1879-1880) which contains information about his work in Mexico, and a family scrapbook. This collection also contains the missionary diaries of Moses Thatcher, Jr. (in photocopy form) spanning the period of 1891-1892, Moses Thatcher, Jr.'s papers concerning his studies at the Logan Brigham Young College, various biographical sketches, and other papers concerning family affairs. The Moses Thatcher Sr. family photo album, was removed and has been reassigned as part of the Thatcher Family Photograph Collection (P0036).

Laurel Thatcher Ulrich later donated a letter from Moses Thatcher in September 2011.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use


It is the responsibility of the user to obtain permission to publish from the owner of the copyright (the institution, the creator of the record, the author or his/her transferees, heirs, legates, or literary executors). The user agrees to indemnify and hold harmless the Utah State University Libraries, its officers, employees, and agents from and against all claims made by any person asserting that he or she is an owner of copyright.

Permission to publish material from the Moses Thatcher Sr. papers must be obtained from the Special Collections Manuscript Curator and/or the Special Collections Department Head.

Preferred Citation

Moses Thatcher Sr. papers, 1866-1923 (COLL MSS 22). Utah State University. Special Collections and Archives Department.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Diaries of Moses Thatcher, Sr., , 1866-1881.Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
1 1
Diary of Moses Thatcher, Sr.,
Original at Brigham Young University, English Mission.
April 9, 1866-April 12, 1867
1 2
Diary of Moses Thatcher, Sr.,
Original at Brigham Young University.
April 13, 1867-July 14, 1868
1 3
Diary of Moses Thatcher, Sr.,
Original at Brigham Young University. Contains diaries "No. 1" (August 1, 1878- May 1879) and "No. 2" (July 20, 1879- December 31, 1879). "No. 1" is largely devoted to church matters, organization of various branches of the Board of Trade, YMMIA, work of Thatcher as Stake President. After April 1879 when Thatcher is ordained to the apostolate, diary is full of central church concerns. Much on the death of his father. "No. 2" deals with the opening of his Mexican Mission. First pages record blessings on him and (p. 73) a "revelation" to his first wife regarding plural marriage.
August 1, 1878-December 31, 1879
1 4
Diary of Moses Thatcher, Sr.,
Original at Brigham Young University. Journal "No. 3". Mexican Mission. Pages in the back of the journal contain lists of letters sent, mission funds, baptisms, etc.
Jan. 1, 1880-June 29, 1881

Thatcher's correspondence letter-books, a memoranda book, a family scrapbook, and other, , 1879-1903.Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
2 1
Memoranda Book, Moses Thatcher, Sr.,
Mexican mission, description, antiquities, Spanish language, LDS translations, etc.
2 2
Correspondence letter-book, Moses Thatcher, Sr.,
Mexican colonies, Council of Twelve Apostles, Thatcher's business interests, especially Oneida Mercantile Union. Much on internal Mormon matters.
Sept. 3, 1888-April 11, 1890
2 3
Correspondence letter-book, Moses Thatcher, Sr.,
Business affairs, major correspondence re: Mexico, Democratic party, family. Church matters almost wholly absent.
May 2, 1902-April 2, 1903
2 4
Scrapbook. "Press Clippings. Personal Mention of Moses Thatcher,"
removal of Moses Thatcher, Sr., from the Apostolate.
Oct. 5, 1896 to Dec. 27, 1896
2 5
Steel Plate for engraved portrait of Moses Thatcher
Probably made when Thatcher was ordained an LDS Apostle. Smaller copy appears in Whitney's History of Utah, II:277.
2 6
Correspondence, Letter from Moses Thatcher to nephew Gilbert Thatcher at camp in Logan Canyon
1909 June 2

Moses and Hezekiah Thatcher Temple Ledger, 1884, 1890Return to Top

Container(s): Box 3

Lists the sealings of Moses Thatcher to his wives and Hezekiah Thatcher to his children.

Papers of the Moses Thatcher Family, , 1885-1971.Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
4 1
Resolution of Sympathy from Deseret National Bank and Deseret Savings Bank, Salt Take City, Utah to the Thatcher Family on the death of Moses Thatcher, Sr.,
August 21, 1901
4 2
Incomplete typescript (pp. 3-9) by Lucy W. Kimball
A life sketch with considerable elaboration on the circumstances of her plural marriages to Joseph Smith and Heber C. Kimball. Possibly the ms from which Andrew Jenson published her testimony regarding plural marriage in Historical Record, VI (May 1887), pp. 229-230.
4 3
"The Joseph of Cache Valley: A History of Hezekiah Thatcher."
Largely copied from the biography in Tullidge's Histories, v. II.
4 4
"Biography of William T. Hopkins, 1845- "by David R. Roberts
4 5
Hezekiah Thatcher Family Organization Newsletter, no. 1,2,3
4 6
Patriarchal Blessing of Sarah Catherine Thatcher,
April 2, 1923
4 7
Missionary Experiences of Aaron F. Farr in Jamaica and England Mission, 1852-1853
Brigham Young University, 1958.
4 8
Diary of Moses Thatcher, Jr.,
Original in possession of Leora Thatcher. English Mission.
April 4, 1891-December 31, 1891
4 9
Diary of Moses Thatcher, Jr.,
Original in possession of Leora Thatcher. English Mission.
January 1, 1892-July 28, 1892
4 10
Diary of Moses Thatcher, Jr., July 29, 1892-October 31, 1892 "My Trip to Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Germany and France in company with S.J. Jeppsen."
Original at Brigham Young University.
4 11
Forms and supporting data regarding the Moses Thatcher, Jr. House, Logan, Utah
Submitted to the Governor's Review Committee, Utah Historic Sites Survey, by A..J. Simmonds, July 29, 1971.
4 12
Class Notes, Brigham Young College,
Sarah Catherine Hopkins (Thatcher). 7 3/3 x 12 1/4" hd. vol.
December 1885-April 1887,
4 13
Class Notes, Brigham Young College, General History,
Probably Moses Thatcher Jr.
November 1887 & February-March 1890
4 14
Newspaper clippings concerning Moses Thatcher, Sr

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

  • Subject Terms :
  • Mormon Church--Missions--Mexico.
  • Mormon missionaries--Diaries.
  • Mormon women--Utah--Biography.
  • Mormons--Utah--Biography.
  • Mormons--Utah--Cache County--Social life and customs--19th century.
  • Personal Names :
  • Farr, Aaron Freeman, 1818-1903.
  • Farr, Aaron Freeman, 1818-1903. Missionary journals. (contributor)
  • Kimball, Lucy Walker, 1826-1910.
  • Kimball, Lucy Walker, 1826-1910. Autobiography. (contributor)
  • Preston, William Bowker, b. 1830.
  • Thatcher, Celestia Ann Farr, 1845-1921.
  • Thatcher, Hezekiah, 1809-1879.
  • Thatcher, Moses, 1842-1909.
  • Thatcher, Moses, 1869-1944. Diaries. (contributor)
  • Thatcher, Moses, 1869-1944--Diaries.
  • Thatcher, Sarah Catherine Hopkins (Caddie), 1868-1953.
  • Corporate Names :
  • Thatcher Brothers Banking Co. (Utah)
  • Thatcher Milling Company (Utah)
  • Thatcher Opera House (Logan, Utah)
  • Zion's Co-operative Mercantile Institution
  • Family Names :
  • Thatcher family.
  • Geographical Names :
  • Logan (Utah)--History.