Major events for the Church, 1900-1909

  • Jan. 1, 1900: Church in the 20th Century began with 271,681 members in 40 stakes.

  • Jan. 25, 1900: Elder Brigham H. Roberts denied seat in U.S. House of Representatives. In January 1903, the election of Elder Reed Smoot as a U.S. senator sparked anti-Mormon sentiment that began a three-year investigation of the Church.

  • Jan. 28, 1900: The Salt Lake Stake, comprised of 55 wards throughout the valley, was divided and the Granite and Jordan stakes created. In 1904, the Ensign, Liberty and Pioneer stakes were also created in the Salt Lake Valley.

  • Aug. 12, 1901: Elder Heber J. Grant dedicated Japan for the preaching of the gospel and started the Japan Mission.

  • Oct. 10, 1901: President Lorenzo Snow, the last Church president to serve with the Prophet Joseph Smith, died after serving three years. President Joseph F. Smith became president Oct. 17.

  • Jan. 1, 1902: The first Children's Friend was published, the official organ of the Primary. Earlier, the Juvenile Instructor became the publication of the Deseret Sunday School Union.

  • 1902: A number of developments in preserving Church history began with the publication of the first volume of documentary History of the Church by Elder Roberts. Carthage Jail was purchased by the Church in 1903; 25 acres in Independence, Mo., in 1904; the Joseph Smith birthplace in Vermont in 1905; the Joseph Smith Sr. farm and Sacred Grove in 1907; and property in Far West, Mo., in 1909.

  • Dec. 23, 1905: President Joseph F. Smith dedicated a 38 1/2-foot granite shaft at the birthplace of Joseph Smith on the centennial of his birth.

  • January 1907: The first Churchwide curriculum for seventies quorums was introduced by the First Council of the Seventy. On April 8, 1908, a uniform curriculum was established for all priesthood quorums.

  • 1908: A standard age for ordinations to Aaronic Priesthood offices and elder were recommended: deacons, at age 12; teachers, 15; priests, 18; and elders, 21. These ages were later modified.

  • 1907: President Joseph F. Smith announced that the Church was entirely free of debt. A year later the Church moved to an all-cash basis and stopped issuing tithing scrip.

  • November 1909: The First Presidency issued a statement on the origin of man that remains an important doctrinal position for the Church.

  • Dec. 31, 1909: Church ended decade with a membership of 377,279 in 60 stakes.

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