Teachings of Presidents
Historical Summary

“Historical Summary,” Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Harold B. Lee (2011), viii–x

“Historical Summary,” Teachings: Harold B. Lee, viii–x

Historical Summary

This book is not a history, but rather a compilation of gospel principles as taught by President Harold B. Lee. However, in order to put the teachings in a historical framework, the following list is provided to summarize some of the milestones in his life that have most immediate relationship to his teachings.

1899, March 28:

Harold Bingham Lee born to Samuel Marion and Louisa Emeline Bingham Lee, Clifton, Oneida County, Idaho.

1907, June 9:

Baptized by Lester Bybee, Clifton, Idaho (8; numbers in parentheses show Harold B. Lee’s age).

1912, fall:

Enters the Oneida Stake Academy, Preston, Idaho, with schoolmate Ezra Taft Benson (13).

1916, summer:

Enters Albion State Normal School, Albion, Idaho (17).

1916–17, winter:

Teaches at the Silver Star School, near Weston, Idaho (17).


Principal of the district school at Oxford, Idaho (18–21).


Missionary, Western States Mission, Denver, Colorado (21–23).

1923, summer:

Attends the University of Utah. He later finishes his degree by correspondence courses and extension classes (24).

1923, November 14:

Marries Fern Lucinda Tanner in the Salt Lake Temple (24).


Principal of the Whittier and Woodrow Wilson Schools, Salt Lake City (24–29).

1930, October 26:

Set apart as president of the Pioneer Stake, 1930–37 (31).

1933, November 7:

Elected to the Salt Lake City Commission; serves from 1933–37 (34).

1935, April 20:

First Presidency assigns Harold B. Lee to work out a program of relief for the needy (36).

1936, April 18:

Called as managing director of the Church security plan (later changed to Church welfare program) (37).

1939, April 16:

First storehouse on Welfare Square is completed in Salt Lake City (40).

1941, April 6:

Sustained a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles (42). Ordained on April 10, 1941.


Holds servicemen’s conferences in Japan, Korea, Okinawa, Philippines, and Guam (55).

1958, August:

Tours South Africa and the Holy Land (59).

1960, March 27:

Organizes the first stake in Europe at Manchester, England (60).

1961, September 30:

At the direction of the First Presidency, announces plan for correlating all Church programs (62).

1962, September 24:

Death of Fern Lucinda Tanner, wife of Harold B. Lee (63).

1963, June 17:

Marries Freda Joan Jensen in the Salt Lake Temple (64).

1965, August 27:

Death of Maurine Lee Wilkins, daughter of Harold B. Lee (66).

1970, January 23:

Sustained as President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and First Counselor to President Joseph Fielding Smith (70).

1972, July 2:

Death of President Joseph Fielding Smith (73).

1972, July 7:

Ordained and set apart as President of the Church (73).

1972, August 25–27:

Presides over area general conference in Mexico City (73).

1972, September 20:

Organizes the Jerusalem Branch at the Garden Tomb (73).

1972, October 5:

Worldwide welfare services program announced (73).

1972, October 6:

Sustained as President of the Church in a solemn assembly (73).

1972, December 14:

International Mission of the Church organized (73).

1973, March 8:

Organizes first stake on Asian mainland at Seoul, Korea (73).

1973, August 24–26:

Presides at the area general conference in Munich, Germany (74).

1973, December 26:

President Harold B. Lee dies in Salt Lake City (74).

1973, December 31:

End-of-year statistics: 3,321,556 members; 630 stakes; 4,580 wards; 108 missions; 17,258 missionaries; 15 temples.