Brigham Young: A Visual Journey


A collection of photographs, artwork, and artifacts spanning the life and ministry of the Church’s second President.

On page 1 of Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Brigham Young, we read: “Brigham Young was the second President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the colonizer and builder of a great commonwealth of Latter-day Saints in the American West, and a devoted husband and father. He was a faithful disciple and Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ. ‘Jesus is our captain and leader,’ he testified ([Deseret News Weekly], 24 May 1871, 5). ‘My faith is placed upon the Lord Jesus Christ, and my knowledge I have received from him,’ he affirmed ([Deseret News Weekly], 21 November 1855, 2). His life was centered in building up and sustaining the kingdom of the Lord Jesus Christ on the earth.”

The following photographs, artwork, and artifacts provide some insight into the life and character of President Brigham Young.

The birthplace of Brigham Young

The birthplace of Brigham Young—Whitingham, Windham County, Vermont—as it appeared in January 1913; photograph by George Edward Anderson.

Lion House and Beehive House

Lion House and Beehive House, serving respectively as office and residence of President Young, 1860; photograph by Charles W. Carter.

President Brigham Young

President Brigham Young, age 51, about 1852.

The compass used by President Brigham Young

The compass used by President Brigham Young on the trek west to the Salt Lake Valley in 1847; courtesy of Museum of Church History and Art.

President Young’s winter home

President Young’s winter home in St. George, Utah, as it appeared about 1935.

President Young, age 71

President Young, age 71, about 1872.

Young Brigham Young

Newly married and not yet a member of the Church, Brigham Young lived in this house in Port Byron, New York.

President Young’s grave

President Young’s grave in Salt Lake City, about 1882; photograph by Charles W. Carter.

[photos] Photography courtesy of LDS Church Archives, except as noted

[photos] Opposite page: Glasses worn by Brigham Young; courtesy of Museum of Church History and Art. Left: Brigham Young, age 44, about 1845; copy of a daguerreotype taken in Nauvoo, Illinois.

[illustration] Background: Brigham Young Party at the Water Hole, by Minerva K. Teichert.

[photos] Top, center: Chair made by Brigham Young in Mendon, New York, sometime before 1832; courtesy of Museum of Church History and Art. In a promissory note signed by Brigham Young on 16 March 1830, he agreed to help repay a loan by making “good kitchen chairs at fifty cents a piece.” Below, left: Beaver fur and silk hat and custom-made dress boots worn by Brigham Young; courtesy of Museum of Church History and Art. Below: President Brigham Young with his brothers, about 1870; photograph by C. R. Savage (from left): Lorenzo, Brigham, Phineas, Joseph, and John. Background: President Brigham Young and his party camped near the Colorado River during a trip to southern Utah, March 1870; photograph by C. R. Savage. President Young is seated in the front row, second from the right, wearing his easily recognizable top hat.

[illustration] Red Cliffs, by Al Rounds. President Young selected the site for the St. George Temple and presided over the temple’s dedication.

[photos] Opposite page, below: Letter from President Brigham Young in 1866 reflecting a renewed resolve to move forward on construction of the Salt Lake Temple; courtesy of Gregory P. Christofferson. This page, top left: Stereoscopic photographs of the Salt Lake Temple foundation. This page, below: Gold and mother-of-pearl umbrella head with Brigham Young’s monogram; courtesy of Museum of Church History and Art. Background: Early stages of the construction of the Salt Lake Temple; photograph by C. R. Savage. The Salt Lake Tabernacle, dedicated in 1875, is in the background, with the “old tabernacle,” the original sloped-roof meeting place built by the pioneers in 1851 and 1852, at left.

[illustration] Top, right: Portrait of President Brigham Young, by John Willard Clawson.

[photos] Below, center: Brigham Young’s home in Nauvoo, Illinois, photographed in 1907. Below, right: The brass bell President Young rang to call his family to dinner and prayer; courtesy of Museum of Church History and Art. Background: President Young’s Forest Farm home, completed in 1863 and originally located six kilometers outside of Salt Lake City. Although President Young never lived in the home, the farm supported his large family and he visited often—particularly for holidays and to showcase his experimental farming techniques for visiting guests and dignitaries. The home has since been moved to This Is the Place State Park, where it is used for tours and depictions of pioneer life.