President Brigham Young:Building a Refuge for the Kingdom of God

Doctrine and Covenants and Church History Student Study Guide, (2005), 165

When the pioneers first arrived in the Salt Lake Valley, it was largely uninhabited and very remote and isolated. Compared with the well-watered farms they left in the east, it was practically a desert. Settling there would require faith and effort, but the Saints believed that with God’s help they could succeed. By the end of 1847, over 2,000 Saints had arrived in the Salt Lake Valley and nearly 12,000 waited to join them from Winter Quarters, Nebraska, and other settlements in Iowa. Under President Brigham Young’s inspired leadership, the Latter-day Saints continued to gather in the Rocky Mountains, conquered the desert, established safe settlements, and courageously took the gospel of Jesus Christ to many nations of the earth.

His Life (1801–77)


Born on June 1 to John and Abigail Howe Young in Whitingham, Vermont


Age 23, married Miriam Works on October 8; she died in 1832


Age 30, baptized on April 14 in his own mill pond near Mendon, New York


Age 31–32, served a mission to Canada and led a small company of converts to Kirtland, Ohio


Age 32, married Mary Ann Angell on February 18; she died in 1882


Age 33, ordained on February 14 as one of the first members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles by the Three Witnesses to the Book of Mormon—Oliver Cowdery, David Whitmer, and Martin Harris


Age 38–40, served a mission to Great Britain


Age 38, sustained as President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles on April 14


Age 43, became leader of the Church as President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles after the Prophet Joseph Smith’s death on June 27


Age 44–46, led the exodus west to the Salt Lake Valley and then returned to Winter Quarters, Nebraska


Age 49–57, served as the first governor of Utah


Age 51, laid the cornerstone for the Salt Lake Temple


Age 76, died August 29 in Salt Lake City after presiding over the Church for 33 years

His Presidency (1844–77)



Led the Saints out of Nauvoo, Illinois


The Sunday School was organized


Sent missionaries to Scandinavia, France, Italy, Switzerland, and Hawaii


Church members started over 350 settlements in the western United States and in parts of Canada and Mexico. The Book of Mormon was first translated into Danish.


Construction began on the Salt Lake Temple


Salt Lake Tabernacle completed; Church general conferences held there


The young women’s organization was started


The young men’s organization was started


St. George Temple was dedicated

Establishing the Saints in Utah

1. “Having successfully brought the first company of Saints across the plains to Utah, President Brigham Young now turned his attention to establishing God’s kingdom in the desert. Through his vision and leadership, what was once an empty desert became a thriving civilization and a haven for the Saints. His plainspoken direction helped the Saints imagine the possibilities of their new home and led them forward in their quest to build God’s kingdom.

2. “Two days after the first company’s arrival, Brigham Young and several of the Twelve climbed a round bluff on the mountainside that President Young had n in vision before leaving Nauvoo. They looked out over the valley’s vast expanse and prophesied that all nations of the world would be welcome in this place and that here the Saints would enjoy prosperity and peace. They named the hill Ensign Peak after the scripture in Isaiah that promised, ‘He shall set up an ensign for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel’ (Isaiah 11:12). [Journal of Discourses,13:85–86.]

3. “President Young’s first public act, on 28 July 1847, was to select a central site for a temple and put men to work planning its design and construction. Placing his cane on the chosen spot he said,‘Here we shall build a temple to our God.’ This declaration must have comforted the Saints, who only a short time before had been forced to discontinue temple worship when they left Nauvoo.

4. “In August, Church leaders and most of the first pioneer company returned to Winter Quarters to prepare their families to come to the valley the next year. Shortly after they arrived, Brigham Young and the Quorum of the Twelve felt impressed that the time had come to reorganize the First Presidency. As President of the Quorum of the Twelve, Brigham Young was sustained as the President of the Church. He chose Heber C. Kimball and Willard Richards as his Counselors, and the Saints unanimously sustained their leaders” (Our Heritage,81–82).

Understanding the Reading

Establishing the Saints in Utah

Haven(par. 1)Safe place 
Quest(par. 1)Search 
Bluff(par. 2)Hill 
Ensign(par. 2)Flag or banner to which people would gather 

The First Year in the Valley

5. “Two more companies of Saints arrived in the Salt Lake Valley before the summer of 1847 was over, and the almost 2,000 members were organized into the Salt Lake Stake. Late crops were planted but the harvest was marginal, and by spring many were suffering from lack of food. John R. Young, who was a boy at the time, wrote:

6. “‘By the time the grass began to grow the famine had waxed sore. For several months we had no bread. Beef, milk, pig-weeds, segoes [lily roots], and thistles formed our diet. I was the herd-boy, and while out watching the stock, I used to eat thistle stalks until my stomach would be as full as a cow’s. At last the hunger was so sharp that father took down the old bird-pecked ox-hide from the limb; and it was converted into most delicious soup’ [John R. Young,Memoirs of John R. Young(1920), 64]. The settlers freely cooperated and shared with each other and so were able to survive this difficult time.

7. “By June 1848, the settlers had planted between five and six thousand acres of land, and the valley began to look green and productive. But to the Saints’ dismay, huge hordes of black crickets descended upon the crops. The settlers did everything they could. They dug trenches and turned streams of water on the crickets. They clubbed the insects with sticks and brooms and tried to burn them, but their efforts were useless. The crickets continued to come in mingly endless numbers. Patriarch John Smith, president of the Salt Lake Stake, called for a day of fasting and prayer. Soon large flocks of seagulls appeared in the sky and descended on the crickets. Susan Noble Grant said of the experience: ‘To our astonishment, the gulls med almost ravenous while gobbling down the scrambling, hopping crickets’ [in Carter E. Grant,The Kingdom of God Restored(1955), 446]. The Saints watched in joy and wonderment. Their lives had been saved.

8. “The Saints worked with energy and faith despite their difficult circumstances, and soon they had made great progress. A traveler on his way to California passed through Salt Lake City in September 1849 and paid tribute to them in this way: ‘A more orderly, earnest, industrious and civil people, I have never been among than these, and it is incredible how much they have done here in the wilderness in so short a time. In this city which contains about from four to five thousand inhabitants, I have not met in a citizen a single idler, or any person who looks like a loafer. Their prospects for crops are fair, and there is a spirit and energy in all that you that cannot be equaled in any city of any size that I have ever been in’ [in B. H. Roberts,Life of John Taylor(1963), 202]” (Our Heritage,82–83).

Understanding the Reading

The First Year in the Valley

Marginal(par. 5)Just barely enough to live on 
Waxed sore(par. 6)Became worse 
Herd-boy(par. 6)Boy who cares for the cows in the field 
Ox-hide(par. 6)Ox’s skin 
Dismay(par. 7)Discouragement and sorrow 
Hordes(par. 7)Swarms 
Ravenous(par. 7)Extremely hungry 
Earnest, industrious and civil(par. 8)Diligent, hard-working and polite 
Idler(par. 8)Person not working 
Like a loafer(par. 8)Lazy 


9. “In the late summer of 1848, President Brigham Young again made the journey from Winter Quarters to the Salt Lake Valley. When he arrived, he realized that the Saints needed to learn what resources were available in their new environment. Much was gained from Indians who lived in the area, but President Young also sent Church members on explorations to discover the medicinal properties of plants and the natural resources available.

10. “He sent other exploring parties to find settlement sites. In their travels these members discovered mineral deposits, abundant timber, water sources, and grasslands, as well as suitable areas for settlement. To guard against land speculation, the prophet warned the Saints against cutting up their assigned property to sell to others. The land was their stewardship and was to be managed wisely and industriously, not for financial gain.

11. “In the fall of 1849, the Perpetual Emigrating Fund was established under the direction of President Young. Its purpose was to assist the poor who did not have the means to travel to join the body of the Church. At great sacrifice, many Saints contributed to the fund, and as a result, thousands of members were able to travel to the Salt Lake Valley. As soon as they were able, those who received help were expected to repay the amount of assistance they had received. These funds were used to help still others. Through this cooperative effort, the Saints blessed the lives of those in need” (Our Heritage,83–84).

Understanding the Reading


Medicinal(par. 9)Healing 
Abundant timber(par. 10)Many trees 
Land speculation(par. 10)Buying up land to resell it for a lot of money 
Stewardship(par. 10)Managing property for another 
Perpetual(par. 11)Continual 
Emigrating(par. 11)Moving from one place to settle in another 

Handcart Pioneers

12. “In the 1850s Church leaders decided to form handcart companies as a way to reduce expenses so that financial aid could be extended to the greatest number of emigrants. Saints who traveled this way put only 100 pounds of flour and a limited quantity of provisions and belongings into a cart and then pulled the cart across the plains. Between 1856 and 1860, ten handcart companies traveled to Utah. Eight of the companies reached the Salt Lake Valley successfully, but two of them, the Martin and Willie handcart companies, were caught in an early winter and many Saints among them perished.

13. “Nellie Pucell, a pioneer in one of these ill-fated companies, turned ten years old on the plains. Both her parents died during the journey. As the group neared the mountains, the weather was bitter cold, the rations were depleted, and the Saints were too weak from hunger to continue on. Nellie and her sister collapsed. When they had almost given up hope, the leader of the company came to them in a wagon. He placed Nellie in the wagon and told Maggie to walk along beside it, holding on to steady herself. Maggie was fortunate because the forced movement saved her from frostbite.

14. “When they reached Salt Lake City and Nellie’s shoes and stockings, which she had worn across the plains, were removed, the skin came off with them as a result of frostbite. This brave girl’s feet were painfully amputated and she walked on her knees the rest of her life. She later married and gave birth to six children, keeping up her own house and raising a fine posterity. [ “Story of Nellie Pucell Unthank,”Heart Throbs of the West,comp. Kate B. Carter, 12 vols. (1939–51), 9:418–20.] Her determination in spite of her situation and the kindness of those who cared for her exemplify the faith and willingness to sacrifice of these early Church members. Their example is a legacy of faith to all Saints who follow them.

Hardships crossing the plains

15. “A man who crossed the plains in the Martin handcart company lived in Utah for many years. One day he was in a group of people who began sharply criticizing the Church leaders for ever allowing the Saints to cross the plains with no more supplies or protection than a handcart company provided. The old man listened until he could stand no more; then he arose and said with great emotion:

16. “‘I was in that company and my wife was in it. … We suffered beyond anything you can imagine and many died of exposure and starvation, but did you ever hear a survivor of that company utter a word of criticism?… [We] came through with the absolute knowledge that God lives for we became acquainted with him in our extremities.

17. “‘I have pulled my handcart when I was so weak and weary from illness and lack of food that I could hardly put one foot ahead of the other. I have looked ahead and n a patch of sand or a hill slope and I have said, I can go only that far and there I must give up, for I cannot pull the load through it. … I have gone on to that sand and when I reached it, the cart began pushing me. I have looked back many times to who was pushing my cart, but my eyes saw no one. I knew then that the angels of God were there.

18. “‘Was I sorry that I chose to come by handcart? No. Neither then nor any minute of my life since.The price we paid to become acquainted with God was a privilege to pay, and I am thankful that I was privileged to come in the Martin Handcart Company’[William Palmer, quoted in David O. McKay, “Pioneer Women,”Relief Society Magazine,Jan. 1948, 8].

19. “Our hymnbook contains a song about the early Church members who courageously accepted the gospel and traveled far to live on the outposts of civilization:

20. “They, the builders of the nation,

Blazing trails along the way;

Stepping-stones for generations

Were their deeds of ev’ry day.

Building new and firm foundations,

Pushing on the wild frontier,

Forging onward, ever onward,

Blessed, honored Pioneer!

21. “Their example teaches us how to live with more faith and courage in our own countries:

22. “Service ever was their watchcry;

Love became their guiding star;

Courage, their unfailing beacon,

Radiating near and far.

Ev’ry day some burden lifted,

Ev’ry day some heart to cheer,

Ev’ry day some hope the brighter,

Blessed, honored Pioneer! [“They, the Builders of the Nation,”no.36]” (77–78, 80).

Understanding the Reading

Handcart Pioneers

Perished(par. 12)Died 
Depleted(par. 13)Used up 
Legacy(par. 14)Something of great value that is handed down from the past 
In our extremities(par. 16)During the most difficult times of our lives 
On the outposts of civilization(par. 19)At the farthest settlements of the frontier 
Forging(par. 20)Progressing through concentrated effort 
Beacon(par. 22)Light for guidance 
Radiating(par. 22)Shining 

Missionaries Answer the Call

23. “With the hum of labor and domestic life filling the air, President Brigham Young turned to the concerns of the Church. At the general conference held on 6 October 1849, he assigned several members of the Twelve, along with newly called missionaries, to serve foreign missions. They accepted these calls even though they would leave behind their families, their new homes, and many unfinished tasks. Erastus Snow and several elders opened missionary work in Scandinavia, while Lorenzo Snow and Joseph Toronto traveled to Italy. Addison and Louisa Barnes Pratt returned to Addison’s former field of labor in the Society Islands. John Taylor was called to France and Germany. As the missionaries traveled east, they passed Saints headed to the new Zion in the Rocky Mountains.

24. “In their fields of labor, the missionaries witnessed miracles and baptized many people into the Church. When Lorenzo Snow, who later became President of the Church, was preaching in Italy, he saw a three-year-old boy on the verge of death. He recognized an opportunity to heal the child and open the hearts of the people in the area. That night he prayed long and earnestly for God’s direction, and the following day he and his companion fasted and prayed for the boy. That afternoon they administered to him and offered a silent prayer for help in their labors. The boy slept peacefully all night and was miraculously healed. Word of this healing spread across the valleys of the Piedmont in Italy. The doors were opened to the missionaries, and the first baptisms in the area took place. [ Francis M. Gibbons,Lorenzo Snow: Spiritual Giant, Prophet of God(1982), 64.]

25. “In August 1852, at a special conference held in Salt Lake City, 106 elders were called to go on missions to countries throughout the world. These missionaries, as well as those who were called later, preached the gospel in South America, China, India, Spain, Australia, Hawaii, and the South Pacific. In most of these areas, the missionaries had little initial success. However, they sowed ds that resulted in many coming into the Church in later missionary efforts.

26. “Elder Edward Stevenson was called to the Gibraltar Mission in Spain. This call meant a return to the place of his birth, where he boldly proclaimed the restored gospel to his countrymen. He was arrested for preaching and spent some time in jail until authorities found he was teaching the guards, almost converting one of them. After his release he baptized two people into the Church and by January 1854 a branch of ten members had been organized. In July, even though six members had left to serve with the British army in Asia, the branch had eighteen members, including one seventy, one elder, one priest, and one teacher, giving the branch the leadership it needed to continue to grow. [ “The Church in Spain and Gibraltar,”Friend,May 1975, 33.]

27. “Local governments in French Polynesia drove the missionaries out in 1852. But the converted Saints kept the Church alive until further proselyting efforts in 1892. Elders Tihoni and Maihea were especially valiant as they endured imprisonment and other ordeals rather than deny their faith. Each of them tried to keep the Saints active and faithful to the gospel. [ R. Lanier Britsch,Unto the Islands of the Sea: A History of the Latter-day Saints in the Pacific(1986), 21–22.]

28. “For those who joined the Church outside the United States, this was a time for gathering to Zion, which meant traveling by boat to America. Elizabeth and Charles Wood sailed in 1860 from South Africa, where they had labored several years to acquire money for their travel. Elizabeth kept house for a wealthy man, and her husband made bricks until they obtained the needed funds. Elizabeth was carried aboard the ship on a bed 24 hours after delivering a son and was given the captain’s berth so she could be more comfortable. She was very ill during the journey, almost dying twice, but lived to settle in Fillmore, Utah.

29. “Missionaries became very dear to the Saints in the countries where they served. Joseph F. Smith, near the end of his mission to Hawaii in 1857, became ill with a high fever that prevented him from working for three months. He was blessed to come under the care of Ma Mahuhii, a faithful Hawaiian Saint. She nursed Joseph as if he were her own son, and a strong bond of love developed between the two. Years later, when he was President of the Church, Joseph F. Smith visited Honolulu and just after his arrival saw an old blind woman being led in with a few choice bananas in her hand as an offering. He heard her call, ‘Iosepa, Iosepa’ (Joseph, Joseph). Immediately he ran to her and hugged and kissed her many times, patting her on the head and saying, ‘Mama, Mama, my dear old Mama.’ [ Charles W. Nibley, “Reminiscences of President Joseph F. Smith,”Improvement Era,Jan. 1919, 193–94.]” (Our Heritage,84–86).

Understanding the Reading

Missionaries Answer the Call

Domestic(par. 23)Home 
Initial(par. 25)Beginning 
Proselyting efforts(par. 27)Efforts to convert others to the Savior, the gospel, and the Church 
Berth(par. 28)Sleeping-place on a ship 

Callings to Colonize

30. “Many communities in Utah and southern Idaho and later in parts of Arizona, Wyoming, Nevada, and California were founded by individuals and families called at general conferences. President Brigham Young directed the establishment of these communities, where thousands of new settlers could live and farm.

Colonies in the west

31. “During his lifetime, all of the Salt Lake Valley and many surrounding areas were colonized. By 1877, when Brigham Young died, more than 350 colonies had been established, and by 1900 there were almost 500. Early Church authority Brigham Henry Roberts noted that the success of Mormon colonization stemmed from ‘the loyalty of the people to their leaders and [their] unselfish and devoted personal sacrifice’ in carrying out their calls from President Young [quoted in Russell R. Rich,Ensign to the Nations(1972), 349]. The colonists sacrificed material comforts, the associations of friends, and sometimes their lives to follow a prophet of the Lord.

32. “At general conference meetings, President Young read the names of those brethren and their families who were being called to move to outlying areas. These colonizers considered that they were being called on missions and knew that they would remain in their assigned locales until they were released. They traveled to their new areas at their own expense and with their own supplies. Their success depended on how well they used the resources at hand. They surveyed and cleared fields, built gristmills, dug irrigation ditches to bring water to the land, fenced pastures for their stock, and built roads. They planted crops and gardens, built churches and schools, and tried to maintain friendly relations with the Indians. They helped each other in sickness, as well as in births, deaths, and weddings.

33. “In 1862 Charles Lowell Walker received a call to settle in southern Utah. He attended a meeting for those who had been called and recorded: ‘Here I learned a principle that I shall not forget in awhile. It showed to me that obedience was a great principle in heaven and on earth. Well, here I have worked for the last seven years through heat and cold, hunger and adverse circumstances, and at last have got me a home, a lot with fruit trees just beginning to bear and look pretty. Well, I must leave it and go and do the will of my Father in Heaven, who overrules all for the good of them that love and fear him. I pray God to give me strength to accomplish that which is required of me in an acceptable manner before him’ [Diary of Charles Lowell Walker,ed. A. Karl Larson and Katharine Miles Larson, 2 vols. (1980), 1:239; spelling and punctuation modernized].

34. “Charles C. Rich, a member of the Quorum of Twelve Apostles, also received a call to colonize. Brigham Young called him and a few other brethren to take their families and settle in the Bear Lake Valley, about 150 miles north of Salt Lake City. The valley was at a high altitude and was very cold with deep snows in the winter. Brother Rich had recently returned from a mission in Europe and was not anxious to move his family and start over again in difficult circumstances. But he accepted the call and in June 1864 arrived in the Bear Lake Valley. The next winter was unusually severe and by spring, some of the other brethren had decided to leave. Brother Rich realized that life would not be easy in this cold climate but said:

35. “‘There have been many hardships. That I admit … and these we have shared together. But if you want to go somewhere else, that is your right, and I do not want to deprive you of it. … But I must stay here, even if I stay alone. President Young called me here, and here I will remain till he releases me and gives me leave to go.’ Brother Rich and his family did stay, and he became the leader of a thriving community for the next several decades. [ Leonard J. Arrington,Charles C. Rich(1974), 264.] Like thousands of others, he willingly obeyed his leaders in order to help build the kingdom of the Lord” (Our Heritage,86, 88–89).

Understanding the Reading

Callings to Colonize

Colonize(subtitle)Establish new towns 
Stemmed from(par. 31)Happened as a result of 
Material comforts(par. 31)Possessions that enhance joy and happiness 
Locales(par. 32)Places 
Gristmills(par. 32)Mills to grind grain into flour 
Adverse(par. 33)Difficult 

Relations with the Indians

36. “As colonists moved further into the frontier, they often had dealings with the Indians. Unlike some settlers of the West, President Brigham Young taught the Saints to feed their native brothers and sisters and try to bring them into the Church. Proselyting efforts among the Indians were tried at Fort Lemhi in the Salmon River region of Idaho Territory and in the Elk Mountain settlement on the upper Colorado in the Utah Territory. President Young also instituted Relief Societies whose members sewed clothing for their Indian brothers and sisters and raised money to help feed them.

37. “When Elizabeth Kane, who was the wife of Thomas L. Kane, a great nonmember friend of the Saints, traveled through Utah, she stayed at the home of a weary Mormon woman. Elizabeth did not think much of the woman until she saw how she treated the Indians. When the woman called her guests to supper, she also spoke a few words to the Indians who were waiting. Elizabeth asked what the woman had said to the Indians and a son in the family told her, ‘These strangers came first, and I have only cooked enough for them; but your meal is on the fire cooking now, and I will call you as soon as it is ready.’ Elizabeth was unbelieving and asked if she really would feed the Indians. The son told her, ‘Mother will serve them just as she does you, and give them a place at her table.’ She did serve them, waiting on them while they ate. [ Elizabeth Wood Kane,Twelve Mormon Homes Visited in Succession on a Journey through Utah to Arizona(1974), 65–66.]” (Our Heritage,89–90).

Understanding the Reading

Relations with the Indians

Frontier(par. 36)Wilderness 
Instituted(par. 36)Organized 
Weary(par. 37)Tired, fatigued 

Organization of Priesthood and Auxiliary Functions

38. “In his later years, President Young clarified and established some important priesthood responsibilities. He directed the Twelve to hold conferences in every stake. As a result, seven new stakes and 140 new wards were created throughout Utah. The duties of stake presidencies, high councils, bishoprics, and quorum presidencies were clearly defined, and hundreds of men were called to fill these positions. He counseled Church members to put their lives in order and pay their tithing, fast offerings, and other donations.

39. “In 1867 the prophet appointed George Q. Cannon as general superintendent of the Sunday School, and within a few years, the Sunday School was a permanent part of the Church organization. In 1869 President Young began giving formal instruction in modest living to his daughters. He expanded this counsel to all young women in 1870 with the formation of the Retrenchment Association (retrenchmeans to cut back excesses). This was the beginning of the Young Women organization. In July 1877 he traveled to Ogden, Utah, to organize the first stake Relief Society” (Our Heritage,90).

Understanding the Reading

Organization of Priesthood and Auxiliary Functions

Auxiliary(subtitle)An organization under the priesthood, such as Sunday School and Relief Society 
Clarified(par. 38)Gave more information about 
Superintendent(par. 39)Leader 
Modest(par. 39)Humble, simple 

What Effect Did the California Gold Rush Have on the Saints in the Salt Lake Valley?

In 1848 when gold was discovered in California, it was a blessing to the faithful but a temptation to the weak in faith. A flood of gold kers crossed the plains from the east and passed through the Salt Lake Valley. Some Church members who were unhappy with the harsh conditions in the valley loaded their wagons and prepared to leave. President Brigham Young counseled: “God has appointed this place for the gathering of His Saints, and you will do better right here than you will by going to the gold mines. … As for gold and silver, and the rich minerals of the earth, there is no other country that equals this; but let them alone; let others k them, and we will cultivate the soil” (in Brown,Giant of the Lord,132–33). Some left for California, but most remained loyal and enjoyed a bountiful harvest that year.

The famous gold rush of 1849 directly blessed the Saints living in the Salt Lake Valley. Merchants hauling goods to California, upon reaching Salt Lake City, learned that food, clothing, and tools sent by ship had already reached that market, so they sold their goods to the Saints at greatly reduced prices. Also, gold kers hired the Saints to repair their wagons. In addition, parties with empty wagons were sent out from Salt Lake to collect goods discarded along the trail by those wanting to lighten their loads for faster travel to the goldfields.

Studying the Reading

Do three of the following activities (A–D) as you study “President Brigham Young.”

Activity A iconA New Homeland

  1. 1.

    Imagine leading a group of people to establish a new homeland. In your notebook, under the title “My Order,” list the following events in the order in which you would do them:

    1. a.

      Divide the land among the people

    2. b.

      Fast and pray to overcome special problems

    3. c.

      Plant crops

    4. d.

      Work hard to make progress

    5. e.

      Identify a place for a temple

    6. f.

      Organize the Church

    7. g.

      Establish an inspired plan for the future

  2. 2.

    Review paragraphs 1–11. Then, under the title “The Pioneers’ Order,” list those same events in the order in which President Brigham Young and the Saints did them during their first several months in the Salt Lake Valley.

  3. 3.

    What impressed you about the order in which they were done?

  4. 4.

    How can you apply this example to the priorities you set in your life?

Activity B iconFind Stories that Relate to the Hymn

  1. 1.

    Carefully read the words of the hymn “They, the Builders of the Nation” in paragraphs 20 and 22.

  2. 2.

    Write the following words and phrases in your notebook. Then find a story from the readings in “President Brigham Young” that is an example of each word or phrase and write a one-sentence summary of the story next to the entry on your list.

    1. a.

      Blazing trails

    2. b.

      Pushing on the wild frontier

    3. c.

      Forging onward

    4. d.


    5. e.


    6. f.


    7. g.


Activity C iconDraw a Map

  1. 1.

    In your notebook, draw or trace the world map from map 7 in the “Church History Chronology, Maps, and Photographs” section of your scriptures. On your map, mark all of the countries where President Brigham Young sent missionaries ( paragraphs 23–29).

  2. 2.

    Answer the following questions:

    1. a.

      In which of these countries would you most like to serve a mission? Why?

    2. b.

      How do you think life changed for the children of those called to serve missions to distant countries?

    3. c.

      What has been the hardest work the Lord has called you to do? How did your experience help you to grow?

Activity D iconWrite a Story

President Brigham Young called many Church members to colonize areas in what is now Utah and its surrounding states. Read paragraphs 30–35 and do the following:

  1. 1.

    List the name of each person who was called to colonize a new community. List a character trait next to the name that you feel best exemplifies that person’s ability to endure a challenging assignment.

  2. 2.

    Look at the picture on page 169 of the family in front of the log home. Imagine you were a member of that family and write a short story describing your feelings when President Brigham Young called you to colonize that area.