LDS Scene

“LDS Scene,” Ensign, Oct. 1986, 80

LDS Scene

President Ezra Taft Benson was presented the 1985 Service to American Agriculture Award by the National Association of County Agricultural Agents (NACAA) at the association’s national convention July 28 in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

President Benson’s service as the secretary of agriculture for eight years under U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower was cited by the association when presenting the award. President Benson became the second recipient of the award, which is presented to “a U.S. citizen who has made a major contribution to American/world agriculture and is so recognized by peers and the general public.”

President Ezra Taft Benson and his wife, Flora, both descendants of early Mormon pioneers, rode in the Days of ’47 Parade on July 24 in Salt Lake City, Utah. The annual parade commemorates the arrival of the Latter-day Saint pioneers in the Salt Lake Valley in 1847. The theme for this year’s parade was “Honoring Pioneer Dreams and Progress.” President and Sister Benson waved to spectators as they were driven along the six-mile parade route. Said to be the third largest parade in the United States, the procession had 179 bands, floats, and other entries.

Ground was broken in Salt Lake City on July 23 for the construction of a new printing center for the Church. President Thomas S. Monson, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, together with Presiding Bishop Robert D. Hales and his counselors, Bishops Henry B. Eyring and Glenn L. Pace, dug the first shovels of dirt to begin construction of the 200,000-square-foot facility. The new printing center will house seven presses, including a new web press capable of printing a million impressions a day. President Monson, who began working as a printer’s helper at the age of fourteen, said that he felt the new facility “will be the finest printing plant anywhere in the world.”

Dale G. Johnson, chairman of the Department of Pediatric Surgery at Primary Children’s Medical Center in Salt Lake City, was installed as president of the American Pediatric Surgical Association. The association represents pediatric surgeons throughout the United States and Canada. Brother Johnson is a member of the Ensign Sixth Ward in Salt Lake City.

Last year, members of the South Carolina Columbia Mission placed more than ten thousand copies of the Book of Mormon in nonmember’s homes. This represents a 200 percent increase over a similar effort last year. The members purchase the books, inscribe their testimonies in them, and then give them to families interested in learning about the Church. A record of where the books were placed is stored on computers, and printouts are given to the missionaries.

The bones of twenty-two pioneer children and nine adults have been recovered from a Salt Lake City building site. The burial ground, which provided the resting places for some of the first pioneers interred in the Salt Lake Valley, was uncovered July 6 during a construction project.

Construction was halted at the site to allow a team of archaeologists from Brigham Young University to excavate the pioneer cemetery. By August 6, the remains of thirty-one early settlers had been found, with more expected to be discovered. Historical records have made tentative identification of some of the remains, but all remains will be sent to a forensic anthropologist at the University of Wyoming, where they will be tested to determine age, sex, and cause of death. Then they will be interred in Utah.

The same site has also revealed the remains of at least one Fremont Indian, indicating for the first time that the ancient Fremont culture extended as far north as the Great Salt Lake.