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John Milton Bernhisel III was born in Lewiston, Utah; March 2, 1878 to John Milton and Henrietta Harris Bernhisel. Although John M. Bernhisel III was the third member of his family by this name (his grandfather was the Utah Territory's first congressional representative and his father was one of the original settlers of Lewiston), he was commonly known as John Milton Bernhisel, Jr. In 1898 Bernhisel enrolled in the Brigham Young College at Logan, Utah and graduated with a B.A. in 1902. On March 2, 1902 Bernhisel married Ruey Pond in the Logan LDS Temple, and they later had six children together. From 1905-1908 Bernhisel served as the principle of the Lewiston School. In 1908 Bernhisel was called to serve as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Later-day Saints in Liverpool, England, and served a total of two years. Upon returning to the United States, Bernhisel enrolled in the Northwestern University School of Dentistry in Evanston, Illinois. After graduating, Bernhisel returned to Lewiston and practiced dentistry for the remainder of his life as a partner in the dental firm Jamison & Bernhisel. During the course of Bernhisel's life in Lewiston he served three terms as mayor and served as the town's postmaster for fourteen years. He was also involved with the Cache Valley Historical Society and was a member of the Lion's Club. He died on February 11, 1957 in Lewiston.
Source: The Herald Journal, February 12, 1957.
This collection contains two missionary diaries of John M. Bernhisel III while he labored in Liverpool, England for the Church of Jesus Christ of Later-day Saints from 1908-1910. Bernhisel's diaries contain a daily log of his proselyting efforts in England, such as tracting, holding ‘street meetings', managing his missionary finances, visiting fellow members of the LDS church, and attending meetings with other missionaries. With colorful insight, Bernhisel's diaries also contain sporadic entries reflecting on life as a missionary and his understanding of Mormon theology. Bernhisel's diaries further record what he did in his spare time, such as attend tea parties, visit museums, and go to theatrical performances.
These two diaries have been placed in separate custom-made boxes and have been labeled as Book 1 and Book 2. Book 1 contains Bernhisel's diary dated June 18, 1908 to February 7, 1909. This full 172 page diary begins with Bernhisel's departure from Cache Valley and ends in the middle of his proselyting efforts in England. Book 2 contains Bernhisel's' diary dated February 8, 1909 to August 1, 1909. This unnumbered diary contains roughly one-hundred full pages of entries documenting his proselyting efforts in England. The diary ends abruptly while Bernhisel was still engaged in his missionary work, and with numerous blank pages left in the diary.
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Permission to publish material from the John Milton Bernhisel III missionary diaries must be obtained from the Special Collections Manuscript Curator and/or the Special Collections Department Head.
John Milton Bernhisel III missionary diaries, 1908-1909. (COLL MSS 292). Utah State University. Special Collections and Archives Department.
|Book 1 : J. M. Bernhisel III missionary diary, Liverpool England||1908-1909|
|Book 2 : J. M. Bernhisel III missionary diary, Liverpool England||1909|