William Derby Johnson diary

William Derby Johnson diary

Dates: 1871-1894

This collection consists of photocopied diaries. The initial thirty-two pages are autobiographical and tell of the first twenty-one years of the author's life. The journal entries are from 2 Dec. 1871 to 24 Jan. 1894. The years 1873 to 1876 are summarized. Johnson attended Deseret University and later taught there. He married Lucy A. Salisbury on 29 Nov. 1869. He taught school in Washington and Kanab, Utah. Johnson served as a territorial legislator 1878-1882 from Kane and Washington counties and also went with the Utah delegation to Washington, D.C. in 1882 to apply for statehood. Johnson went to Mexico in 1885 to escape arrest for bigamy and helped lay out the town of Diaz, Chihuahua, Mexico 1886. He was set apart as Superintendent of Church schools in the Mexican Mission in 1892.

  • Extent: 11 boxes (5.5 linear feet): photocopies.
  • Creator: Johnson, William Derby, 1850-1910
  • Call Number: MSS 1506
  • Repository: L. Tom Perry Special Collections; 19th Century Western & Mormon Manuscripts; 1130 Harold B. Lee Library; Brigham Young University; Provo, Utah 84606; http://sc.lib.byu.edu/
  • Access Restrictions: Open for public research.
Languages and Scripts
Materials are in English.
Conditions of Use
It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances. Permission to publish material from Diary must be obtained from the Supervisor of Reference Services and/or the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Board of Curators.
Preferred Citation
Initial citation: MSS 1506; Diary; 19th Century Western & Mormon Manuscripts; L. Tom Perry Special Collections, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University. Following citations: MSS 1506, LTPSC.
Acquisition Information
Donated; Leona Simper; 1975.
Other Finding Aids
Original diaries are owned by Beth Simper of Holbrook, Arizona.
Subject Terms
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints--Education--Mexico--Sources; Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints--Utah--Kanab--History--Sources; Johnson, William Derby, 1850-1910--Diaries; University of Deseret--History--Sources; Educators--Utah--Kanab--Diaries; Kanab (Utah)--History--Sources; Legislators--Utah--Diaries; Material Types; Mormons--Colonization--Mexico--Diaz (Chihuahua)--History--Sources; Polygamy--Religious aspects--Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; Washington County (Utah)--History--Sources
Genre / Form
Appraisal Information
Utah and the American West and LDS cultural, social, and religious history (19th century Western & Mormon Manuscripts collection development policy, 5.VII, 2007).
Finding Aid ID Number
Finding Aid Title
Johnson (William Derby) diary
Finding Aid Author
Finding aid prepared by Garrett Schroath
Finding Aid Creator
This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit 2011-12-27T10:47-0700
Finding Aid Language
Biographical Info:

Biographical History

Johnson was an educator, legislator, and held a number of positions in the Mormon Church. He served as bishop of the Kanab Ward, Utah (1877-1884), as a member of the Kanab Stake presidency (1884-1885), and as bishop of the Diaz Ward, Juarez Stake, Mexico (1886-1910).

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Ryan Lee
Curator - 19th Century Western & Mormon Manuscripts