Presidents of the Church

The Latter-day Saint Woman: Basic Manual for Women, Part A, (2000), 277–80


1. Joseph Smith

Born 23 December 1805 in Sharon, Windsor County, Vermont, the son of Joseph Smith Sr. and Lucy Mack Smith. Received the Melchizedek Priesthood (ordained an Apostle) in the spring of 1829 by the Apostles Peter, James, and John (see D&C 20:2, 27:12); called of God to be first elder of the Church 6 April 1830; ordained a high priest 3 June 1831 by Lyman Wight; sustained as President of the high priesthood 25 January 1832 at a conference at Amherst, Lorain County, Ohio; martyred 27 June 1844 at Carthage Jail, Carthage, Hancock County, Illinois, at age 38.

2. Brigham Young

Born 1 June 1801 in Whitingham, Windham County, Vermont, the son of John Young and Abigail Howe Young. Ordained an Apostle 14 February 1835 by the Three Witnesses of the Book of Mormon: Oliver Cowdery, David Whitmer, and Martin Harris; sustained as President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 14 April 1840; First Presidency organized with Brigham Young as President of the Church 27 December 1847; died 29 August 1877 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, at age 76.

3. John Taylor

Born 1 November 1808 in Milnthorpe, Westmoreland County, England, the son of James Taylor and Agnes Taylor Taylor. Ordained an Apostle 19 December 1838 by Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimball; sustained as President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 6 October 1877; sustained as President of the Church 10 October 1880; died 25 July 1887 in Kaysville, Davis County, Utah, at age 78.

4. Wilford Woodruff

Born 1 March 1807 in Avon (Farmington), Hartford County, Connecticut, the son of Aphek Woodruff and Beulah Thompson Woodruff. Ordained an Apostle 26 April 1839 by Brigham Young; sustained as President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 10 October 1880; sustained as President of the Church 7 April 1889; died 2 September 1898 in San Francisco, San Francisco County, California, at age 91.

5. Lorenzo Snow

Born 3 April 1814 in Mantua, Portage County, Ohio, the son of Oliver Snow and Rosetta Leonora Pettibone Snow. Ordained an Apostle 12 February 1849 by Heber C. Kimball; sustained as Counselor to President Brigham Young 8 April 1873; sustained as Assistant Counselor to President Brigham Young 9 May 1874; sustained as President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 7 April 1889; First Presidency organized with Lorenzo Snow as President of the Church 13 September 1898; died 10 October 1901 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, at age 87.

6. Joseph F. Smith

Born 13 November 1838 in Far West, Caldwell County, Missouri, the son of Hyrum Smith and Mary Fielding Smith. Ordained an Apostle and named Counselor to the First Presidency 1 July 1866 by Brigham Young; became a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 8 October 1867; released as Counselor to the First Presidency at the death of President Young 29 August 1877; sustained as Second Counselor to President John Taylor 10 October 1880; released at the death of President Taylor 25 July 1887; sustained as Second Counselor to President Wilford Woodruff 7 April 1889; sustained as Second Counselor to President Lorenzo Snow 13 September 1898; sustained as First Counselor to President Lorenzo Snow 6 October 1901 (not set apart to this calling); released at the death of President Snow 10 October 1901; First Presidency organized with Joseph F. Smith as President of the Church 17 October 1901; died 19 November 1918 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, at age 80.

7. Heber Jeddy Grant

Born 22 November 1856 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, the son of Jedediah Morgan Grant and Rachel Ridgeway Ivins Grant. Ordained an Apostle 16 October 1882 by George Q. Cannon; set apart as President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 23 November 1916; blessed and set apart as President of the Church 23 November 1918; died 14 May 1945 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, at age 88.

8. George Albert Smith

Born 4 April 1870 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, the son of John Henry Smith and Sarah Farr Smith. Ordained an Apostle 8 October 1903 by Joseph F. Smith; set apart as President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 8 July 1943; ordained and set apart as President of the Church 21 May 1945 at 75; died 4 April 1951 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, at age 81.

9. David Oman McKay

Born 8 September 1873 in Huntsville, Weber County, Utah, the son of David McKay and Jennette Eveline Evans McKay. Ordained an Apostle 9 April 1906 by Joseph F. Smith; sustained as Second Counselor to President Heber J. Grant 6 October 1934; sustained as Second Counselor to President George Albert Smith 21 May 1945; sustained as President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 30 September 1950; sustained as President of the Church 9 April 1951; died 18 January 1970 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, at age 96.

10. Joseph Fielding Smith

Born 19 July 1876 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, the son of Joseph F. Smith and Julina Lambson Smith. Ordained an Apostle 7 April 1910 by Joseph F. Smith; sustained as Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 30 September 1950; sustained as President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 9 April 1951; sustained as Counselor in the First Presidency 29 October 1965; ordained and set apart as President of the Church 23 January 1970; died 2 July 1972 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, at age 95.

11. Harold Bingham Lee

Born 28 March 1899 in Clifton, Oneida County, Idaho, the son of Samuel M. Lee and Louisa Bingham Lee. Ordained an Apostle 10 April 1941 by Heber J. Grant; set apart as President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 23 January 1970; sustained as First Counselor to President Joseph Fielding Smith 23 January 1970; ordained and set apart as President of the Church 7 July 1972; died 26 December 1973, in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, at age 74.

12. Spencer Woolley Kimball

Born 28 March 1895 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, the son of Andrew Kimball and Olive Woolley Kimball. Ordained an Apostle 7 October 1943 by Heber J. Grant; set apart as Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 23 January 1970; became President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 7 July 1972; ordained and set apart as President of the Church 30 December 1973; died 5 November 1985 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, at age 90.

13. Ezra Taft Benson

Born 4 August 1899 in Whitney, Franklin County, Idaho, the son of George T. Benson and Sarah Dunkley Benson. Ordained an Apostle 7 October 1943 by Heber J. Grant; set apart as President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 30 December 1973; ordained and set apart as President of the Church 10 November 1985; died 30 May 1994 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, at age 94.

14. Howard William Hunter

Born 14 November 1907 in Boise, Ada County, Idaho, the son of John William Hunter and Nellie Marie Rasmussen Hunter. Ordained an Apostle 15 October 1959 by David O. McKay; set apart as Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 10 November 1985; set apart as President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 2 June 1988; ordained and set apart as President of the Church 5 June 1994; died 3 March 1995 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, at age 87.

15. Gordon Bitner Hinckley

Born 23 June 1910 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, the son of Bryant S. Hinckley and Ada Bitner Hinckley. Sustained an Assistant to the Twelve 6 April 1958; ordained an Apostle 5 October 1961 by David O. McKay; set apart as Counselor to President Spencer W. Kimball 23 July 1981; set apart as Second Counselor to President Kimball 2 December 1982; served as First Counselor to President Ezra Taft Benson 10 November 1985; set apart as President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 5 June 1994; called as First Counselor to President Howard W. Hunter 5 June 1994; ordained and set apart as President of the Church 12 March 1995.