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Emmeline B. Wells collection

Emmeline B. Wells (1828-1921)

In honor of the 100th anniversary of the official adoption of the 19th amendment, granting women in the United States the right to vote, which will be on August 18, 2020, L. Tom Perry Special Collections is pleased to announce the availability of a newly digitized collection: Emmeline B. Wells collection (Vault MSS 805). The collection contains correspondence of Emmeline B. Wells, 1898-1923; papers and poems either by or about Emmeline B. Wells; a certificate to the Columbian Exposition in 1893; handwritten documents written by Emmeline B. Wells or family; priesthood blessings; photocopies of photographs; original and typescript of ledger book (Emmeline B. Wells’ copy with marginal notes) recording Utah Suffrage Association membership and “Relief Society Minutes, Nauvoo, 1842-1844;” diaries of Emmeline B. Wells, 1 May 1875-14 October 1876, and 16 December 1883- 29 January 1886; genealogical pencil records; original and color photocopy of verse book written for Emmeline B. Wells on her seventieth birthday; and original and color photocopy of “Songs and Flowers of the Wasatch,” a book of verse presented at the World’s Columbian Exposition (1893: Chicago) containing hand-painted watercolor illustrations. Dated 1842-1923.

For more information about Emmeline B. Wells, and to explore all her recently published diaries, visit this website by the Church Historian’s Press.  The other 45 original diaries have all been digitized as well, and images can be found here.

Emmeline B. Wells was instrumental in both the Utah and national suffrage movements of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Wells was the chief editor of the women’s rights journal Women’s Exponent. She was also friends with famous suffragettes Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony and in 1899 she was invited by the International Council of Women to speak at its London meeting as a United States representative. Wells served as the general president of the Relief Society of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from 1910 to 1921.

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