Posts Tagged ‘Norway’

Genealogy Quote of the Week ~ John A. Widtsoe

Our genealogy quote today is by John A. Widtsoe, a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) from 1921 until his death in November 1952.

John A. Widtsoe

John A. WidtsoeJohn Andreas Widtsoe was a general authority in the LDS Church. He was also an educator who served as the director of the Department of Agriculture at Brigham Young University, president of the Utah Agricultural College (Utah State University), and became president of the University of Utah in 1916. He was also a noted author, scientist, and academician. His wife was Leah Dunford, a granddaughter of Brigham Young.

To quote from Wikipedia: “John A.Widtsoe was born on the island of Frøya in Sør-Trøndelag, Norway. At birth his hand was attached to the side of his head but he survived the operation to fix this problem. When Widtsoe was two his family moved to the Norwegian mainland city of Namsos. His father, also named John, died in February 1878. This left his mother Anna as a widow with two young sons to take care of: Widtsoe, who was then five, and his little brother Osborne Widtsoe. After this, the family moved to Trondheim. Here his mother was introduced to the LDS Church by a shoemaker.  In 1883, Widtsoe immigrated to the United States with his mother and brother. They made it to Utah Territory in mid-November.”

After graduating from Brigham Young College in Logan, Utah, John A. Widtsoe later also graduated from Harvard University with honors in 1894. He then became head of the Agricultural Experiment Station at Utah State Agricultural College where he taught farmers better farming skills. In 1898, Widtsoe was ordained to the office of a Seventy and set apart to do missionary work in connection with his studies in Europe. He attended the University of Göttingen, Germany, where he graduated with A. M. Ph.D. degrees in 1899. For two years in the 1920s John A. Widtsoe lived in Washington, D. C. where he supervised the reorganization of the Federal Bureau of Reclamation.

Genealogy quote from John A. Widtsoe

These are trying days, in which Satan rages, at home and abroad, hard days, evil and ugly days. We stand helpless as it seems before them. We need help. We need strength. We need guidance. Perhaps if we would do our work in behalf of those of the unseen world who hunger and pray for the work we can do for them, the unseen world would in return give us help in this day of our urgent need. There are more in the other world than there are here. There is more power and strength there than we have here upon this earth. We have but a trifle, and that trifle is taken from the immeasurable power of God. We shall make no mistake in becoming collaborators in the Lord’s mighty work for human redemption. (From Conference Report, Apr. 1943, 39).

Genealogy Quote of the Week – Nephi Anderson

This week’s genealogy quote is by Nephi Anderson, librarian of the Genealogical Society of Utah and editor of the Utah Genealogical and Historical Magazine from 1910–1923.

 Nephi Anderson

Nephi Anderson

From Wikipedia: “Nephi Anderson (1865 – 1923) was a prolific LDS author . . . His most successful work was his first novel, Added Upon (1898), but his writing career also included short stories, poetry, and non-fiction.”

Nephi Anderson was born in Christiania (modern Oslo), Norway, and at the age of six years immigrated with his parents to Utah. He later taught school in Ogden and Brigham City eventually becoming Superintendent of schools in Box Elder County. He served as editor of the Millennial Star during his mission in Great Britain. In later years, he traveled widely speaking about genealogy. The quote below was given when the Genealogical Library in Salt Lake City was still small.

Genealogy quote from Nephi Anderson

I see the records of the dead and their histories gathered from every nation under heaven to one great central library in Zion — the largest and best equipped in the nations, but in Zion will be the records of the last resort and authority. Trained genealogists will find constant work in all nations having unpublished records, searching among the archives for families and family connections. Then, as temples multiply, and the work enlarges to its ultimate proportions, this Society, or some organization growing out of this Society, will have in its care some elaborate, but perfect system of exact registration and checking, so that the work in the temples may be conducted without confusion or duplication.

And so throughout the years, reaching into the Millennium of peace, this work of salvation will go on, until every worthy soul that can be found from early records will have been searched out and officiated for; and then the unseen world will come to our aid, the broken links will be joined, the tangled threads will be placed in order, and the purposes of God in placing salvation within the reach of all will have been consummated. (“Genealogy’s Place in the Plan Salvation,” Utah Genealogical and Historical Quarterly, January 1912, pp. 21-22.)


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