Best Penmanship
April 2004

“Best Penmanship,” Liahona, Apr. 2004, F12–F13

Best Penmanship

Adapted from Bryant S. Hinckley, Heber J. Grant: Highlights in the Life of a Great Leader (1951), 39–42.

President Heber J. Grant
Events in the life of President Grant

Illustrated by Mike Eagle

One day Heber J. Grant was playing marbles with some friends when a bookkeeper from the bank walked by.

Friend 1: That man makes a lot of money.

Heber: How much?

Friend 1: As much as you would earn polishing 120 pairs of boots every single day.

Heber knew he wanted to be able to make a living when he was older.

Heber: Someday I’ll be a bookkeeper at the bank too!

Friend 2: You’d better learn how to write. Your writing looks like lightning struck the ink bottle.

Friend 1: It’s worse than hen tracks!

Heber worked on his handwriting until it was beautiful.

To earn money, he wrote greeting cards, wedding cards, and legal documents. He was offered a large amount of money to be a professional penman in the state of California, but he didn’t take the job.

Eventually, Heber reached his goal of working at the bank. He also became a penmanship teacher at a university.

Once during the fair, a penmanship contest was held. Heber spoke to the man in charge.

Heber: I wrote better samples than any of these before I was 17 years old.

Man: I don’t know if I believe that. Show me.

Heber fetched his writing sample, paid the contest entry fee, and won the contest. Throughout his life, he encouraged children to learn to write well.