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British Mission

The following spreadsheet contains the British Mission Statistics for the years 1837-1930

Citation: James Perry, ‘British Mission Statistics, 1837-1930’, 2017, available at: http://www.jamesperry.uk/british-lds-history/british-mission/, [date accessed].

British Mission Association

This is a research section concerning the British Mission Association.

Millennial Star, Vol. 94, No. 30 (1932), p. 479.

Millennial Star, Vol. 94, No. 30 (1932), p. 479.

Transfer and Appointment: Elder Russel S. Ellsworth was transferred from the Nottingham District to the British Mission Office, July 8th, to succeed Elder Perry L. Watkins as M. I. A. Supervisor and B. M. A. Chairman.
Releases and Departures: The following missionaries have been honourably released from their labours in the British Mission : Elder Rulon T. Jeffs of the London District and Secretary of the British Mission, released July 29th, and will sail on the Bremen, July 29th ; Elder A. Lee Brown of the London, Newcastle and Leeds Districts, released July 10th, and will sail on the Manhattan, August 25th ; Elder Moroni H. Brown of the Nottingham and Liverpool Districts, released July 10th, and will sail on the Manhattan, August 25th ; Elder Perry L. Watkins of the Nottingham District, B. M. A. Chairman and British Mission M. I. A. Supervisor, released July 25th, and will sail on the Leviathan, July 30th ; Elder Paul H. Morton of the London, Nottingham and Scottish Districts, released July 1st, and will sail on the Bremen, August 22nd.
Millennial Star, Vol. 94, No. 30 (1932)


Millennial Star, Vol. 97, No. 24 (1935), p. 382.

‘Elder George Homer Durham was honourably released June 13th, having laboured in the Liverpool district and as B. M. A. chairman and president of the British mission Y. M.M.I. A.’


By Leah D. Widtsoe

The British Mission association (or as it is called in the United States, the B. M. A.) sends greetings to all members and friends of the Church in Great Britain. All who were born on British soil and all past missionaries to Great Britain are urged to enjoy membership in the association and to participate in its activities. Semi-annual re-unions of the society are held at the time of the General Conference of the Church, at which missionaries and friends renew acquaintances and cement old ties of friendship.

The highest service of the B. M. A., however, is its endeavour to have monthly Temple excursions at which time all who participate take names from lists sent to the Temple by British members. This is a most worthy demonstration of the promise given to the Prophet as recorded in the second section of the Doctrine and Covenants : “And he shall plant in the hearts of the children the promises made to the fathers, and the hearts of the children shall turn to their fathers ; if it were not so, the whole earth would be utterly wasted at his coming.”

Last Spring the following invitation was sent to all members of the B. M. A. :


Millennial Star, Vol. 97, No. 39 (1935), 614-615.

Continued missionary service is one of the ideals of the British Mission association. A feature of this programme is our monthly Temple excursions. On these occasions members and missionaries do the work for names sent to the Temple by saints in the British Isles. We thereby give direct service ourselves and indirectly encourage members there to continue in their research work.

Last month we did work for 18 persons. Next Monday, June 24, we would like to double our number. Names from British lists will be furnished upon request at any session. All those who are unable to attend during the day are asked to participate in the last session — 6 to 7 p.m. We should be happy to have you join with us in this service.

British Mission Association

Clarence Tayler, President

Eileen Ann Waspe, Secretary

The Temple

The Salt Lake Temple, the picture of which appears on the cover, is one of the most famed edifices in the world. Its spires rising high over Salt Lake valley, the Temple was forty years in building. Ground was broken for its erection under the direction of President Brigham Young, February 14, 1853. It was dedicated on the sixty-third anniversary of the organization of the Church— April 6, 1893— by President Wilford Woodruff. A total of 75,000 persons attended the dedicatory service held during several days.

It is within the walls of this sacred structure that ordinances are vicariously performed for British Saints by former travelling elders and members of British mission.

Two Temple excursions have been held, one in May and one in June, at which over forty names were taken by those who participated. This is a great privilege and gives a real satisfaction to all who attend, as well as rendering a great service to British friends who are unable to perform Temple ordinances for their loved ones who have passed to the great Beyond. Naturally this service is entirely voluntary on the part of those who attend.

Another service which is being rendered by the B. M. A. is the giving of programmes in the ward Sunday evening services. Twelve such programmes have been given this year and this service makes closer the ties which exist between the members of the Church here, while the missionaries are thus enabled to retain a greater portion of the enriching “missionary spirit” after their return home.

As another proof of loyalty to friends and members over seas the B. M. A. celebrated ” August Bank Holiday” at Lagoon, a pleasure resort just north of Salt Lake City. The following invitation appeared in the Deseret News :

The annual August Bank Holiday outing of the British Mission association will be held at Lagoon next week, it was announced by Clarence L. Tayler, president of the Association, and Clinton L. Mills, chairman of the committee in charge. All Britons, returned British missionaries and their friends are invited to attend.

Salt Lake City and Ogden missionaries will compete in a Softball game at 6 p.m. Luncheon and a programme under the east bowery will be followed by dancing at 9 : 15 p.m.

A member of the general authorities of the Church who has presided over the British mission will be asked to speak at the outing. Special music numbers and community singing will be a part of the programme also.

A jolly crowd of about three hundred members and friends from Salt Lake, Ogden, Logan and Brigham City responded to the invitation and a happy, joyous time of relaxation and fun was enjoyed by all. Apostle Joseph Fielding Smith, President Rulon S. Wells, Sister Leah D. Widtsoe (President John A. Widtsoe being out of the city), President and Sister A. William Lund, President and Sister James H. Douglas and also Patriarch and Sister James H. Wallis participated with hearty good will. Our thoughts and hearts went out to you, our dear friends, as we enjoy reminiscences of happy times spent in your society on similar occasions in your wonderful country.

This message of good fellowship cannot be closed without expressing to you the joy that we experienced over the glorious success of your first mission-wide June conference of the M. I. A. Reports have reached us of the spiritual up-building as well as the social enrichment which was enjoyed by so many of you during the conference. We prayed for the success of the undertaking and are gratified because of the results achieved. Again you have proved that the Church programme may function in the missions as well as in the stakes of Zion, and that the restored Gospel meets the requirements of all peoples in every land.

To all those who were actively responsible for the planning and fruition of the event, as well as to all who participated, the B. M. A. in Zion sends hearty congratulations. We feel that with you we might sing a mighty chorus: “Zion is growing!” And then as new determination comes to spread the message of truth by our constant attempts at more complete and righteous living, may we some day be able to sing all over the earth — “Zion Prospers, All Is Well,” MS, Vol. 97, No. 39 (1935).

‘The annual reunion of the L. D. S. British mission association will be held Saturday at 9:15 p. m. in the Yalo L. D. S. ward, 1437 Gilmer drive. The activities will include a program and dancing. All former British missionaries and British residents and their friends are invited.’

Friday 4 October 1935, Salt Lake Tribune

Fish and Chips in Zion

Millennial Star, Vol. 98, No. 15, (1936), p. 229.


By Elder Gordon B. Hinckley.

THEY came nearly five hundred strong. Every portion of food was served in a piece of yesterday’s newspaper — and paid for with a British copper.

It was the first annual winter social of the British Mission Association, held in Salt Lake City February 28. Into a hall almost too small they poured in a seemingly endless stream. At the door they paid 15 American cents and received in exchange an English penny. Even the feel of the large copper coin was a delight. But the real thrill, bringing to many a sore touch of homesickness, came when the penny was set on a counter between vinegar bottles and salt shakers in exchange for some honest-to-goodness fish and chips.

Then some of the old dances. Even a try at the veleta. And a grand climax of familiar songs with God Save the King a final ringing chorus.

On the stage in the background was a large Union Jack, flanked on one side by a smaller model and on the other side by the Stars and Stripes.

That peculiar smell of hot fat, of crisped potatoes, and of fish — filleted, dipped in batter and then browned — filled the hall. Greasy fingers, squares of news print and broad smiles best told the story.

In order to get fresh, suitable fish it was necessary to telegraph to Seattle and import it by special delivery a distance of nearly 800 miles. Two boys from England, at home behind the tiled counters, with a returned missionary, handled the kettles.

The British Mission Association is active in keeping alive the happy memories of saints and missionaries who have lived in Britain. More than that, it is endeavouring in every way possible to cultivate the spiritual interests of its members.

Temple excursions are held at which work is done for British dead. Sunday night meetings are sponsored to keep British missionaries active, and at the same time acquaint the people of Utah with the spirit of a British branch and the atmosphere of the mission field.

At the time of the annual Spring General Conference of the Church a reunion is held at which an excellent programme is given, followed by dancing. In the summer an outdoor event is held, a holiday which brings to mind Whit Monday or August Bank holiday when the branch rambles over the hills with lunches and balls.

Then at the time of the fall General conference another re-union is held similar to the one in the spring. And now we have had a winter party — and we hope to have one every year.

Midnight came quickly. The heat under the kettles was shut off. The crowd filed out to go to their homes all over the city.

One lad from Lancashire opened the kitchen door a little, took a deep breath of the scented air, and remarked, “Eh, ba gum, ’twas a good party.”


Millennial Star, Vol. 99, No. 7 (1937), p. 130.

‘MISSIONARIES who have laboured in the British Mission held a fish and chips party in the Ninth Ward Chapel in Salt Lake City, Friday, January 29th. The social was sponsored by the British Mission Association and was attended by a goodly number who formerly laboured as missionaries in Britain. They enjoyed fish and chips served in a piece of newspaper, just as they are served in this land. It was the second annual winter social of the Association.’


Millennial Star, Vol. 99, No. 29 (1937), p. 470.

‘Simultaneous with the Centennial conference in Preston and Rochdale, a celebration is being held Sunday, August 1st, in the Salt Lake Tabernacle, with approximately three hundred members of the British Mission Association taking part in a pageant which depicts in a series of tableaux, early events in the history of the Church. President David O. McKay will be principal speaker at the service. The July number of The Improvement Era is largely devoted to the British Mission, with a picture of Big Ben on the cover of the magazine. Recently off the press is a volume, A Century of Mormonism in Great Britain, by Elder Richard L. Evans, managing editor of the Era and formerly associate editor of the Millennial Star. It relates the story of the activities of the Church in the United Kingdom, with emphasis on its introduction a century ago. Two hundred and fifty pages in length, the volume also contains a number of interesting illustrations of Church landmarks and buildings and the men who have presided over the European and British Missions.’


Millennial Star, Vol. 99, No. 45 (1937), p. 734.

‘SINGING before the reunion of the British Mission Association recently held in Salt Lake City in connection with the 108th Semi-annual Conference, was the “Millennial Chorus.” Elder Bertram T. Willis, former director of the mission organization, is leading the singing group, which is composed of returned British missionaries and members of the original chorus. They are Elders Richard D. Rees, David C. Thomas, John W. Boud, Ralph W. Hardy and Gilbert R. Langton. The programme, conducted by Elder W. Jay Eldredge, President of the British Mission Association, included a reading by Brother James McQueen, who recently arrived in Salt Lake City from his native Scotland, and a vocal solo by Elder Harry Clark.’


Millennial Star, Vol. 100, No. 16 (1938), p. 254.

‘HEARD at a recent re-union of the British Mission Association at Emerson Ward Chapel in Salt Lake City was the Millennial Chorus under the direction of Elder Bertram T. Willis. The former members of the singing group in Britain are organized and singing before audiences at home. At the re-union popular English folk songs were enjoyed.’


Millennial Star, Vol. 101, No. 37 (1939), p. 392.

Elder A. Lucian Lewis, who has laboured in Sheffield and Birmingham Districts, being supervising elder of the latter; and in the British Mission office, where he was executive secretary of the Y.M. M.I.A., book store manager and chairman of the B.M.A., will return to his home in Douglas, Arizona.

Millennial Star, Vol. 101, No. 37 (1939)


Millennial Star, Vol. 101, No. 42 (1939), p. 672.

‘Elder Aldon J. Anderson, Jr., who has laboured in the Millennial Chorus, officiating as president of that group; the British Mission Office, as executive secretary of the Y.M.M.I.A., manager of the book Store, and secretary of the British Mission Association; and the London District as supervising elder, was honourably released on Thursday, October 12th, and will return to his home in Salt Lake City, Utah.’


ON Friday evening. April 14th, 1947, I had the great privilege of gathering with the Saints and Missionaries from Great Britain at the annual meeting of the British Mission Association held in the University Ward Chapel in Salt Lake City, Utah.

This particular meeting was a most gratifying experience in terms of rekindling the wonderful emotions associated with my experience in the British Isles. The great pleasure of shaking hands with President and Mrs. Anastasiou, President and Mrs. Dunn, and Mr. and Mrs. Gittins, to mention but a few, seemed to take me back over the intervening years and brought to mind many pleasant memories.

I am happy to say that there is a tremendous re-birth of spirit and enthusiasm over oiu* British Missionary Association, and not the least of the many contributing factors is the steady flow of missionaries leaving Zion for England. Then, too, we have the opportunity of catching the feeling of the Saints in Great Britain through Elder Ezra Taft Benson and President Hugh B. Brown and others associated with them recently in the mission field.


I am very grateful for this opportvmity to express, through the medium of the Millennial Star, my love and appreciation to the many Saints in Great Britain whose kindly acts and tolerant understanding so richly blessed my life.

During the period of my mission, 1935 to 1937, it was my happy privilege to travel frequently over the entire mission and meet most of the Saints in their respective branches.

First, in the role of a co-lecturer presenting the story of the American Red Indians and tiie Book of Mormon with Elder J. Ridge Hicks, and later Elder David C. Thomas; and second with the Millennial Chorus, I went from district to district finding in each place the warmth and humility of the Latter-day Saints, and learning to love and appreciate them for their untiring devotion to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I became more proud each day of my mission experience that my noble ancestors had their roots deep in the soil of this favoured Island.


Since I left Great Britain in March of 1937, the Lord has indeed been good to me. On arriving home in Salt Lake City, I found employment in a work that has long interested me — radio broadcasting. I joined the staff of Radio Station KSL in Salt Lake City, on April 1st, 1937, and have remained with that fine institution to this day. In America, the Radio Broadcasting System of the country is in the hands of private ownership, and the majority ownership of Station KSL is held by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Through the medium of Station KSL, it is our privilege each Sunday morning to broadcast the Salt Lake Tabernacle Choir and Organ to a nation-wide audience in America and Canada. The size of this weekly audience listening to the Choir and Organ has been estimated by a national research organisation to be in excess of four million i>eople.

In addition to this marvellous service, four times each year the facilities of a nationwide network of radio stations (The Columbia Broadcasting System) are made available through Radio Station KSL. to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to present speakers on the “Church of the Air”.

Most of the General Authorities of the Church have had the privilege of addressing this vast “Church of the Air” audience.

Particularly significant is the fact that the Columbia Broadcasting System has given the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints the much sought after dates of Christmas and Easter Sunday for several years.


Well do I remember the counsel of my Mission President, Joseph J. Cannon, on the occasion of my leaving ths British Isles in 1937. “Regard your release from, your mission as a transfer to another field of labour.”

This message has been a potent factor in my attitude towards the Church. Then, too, I was blessed with the companfonship of my fellow missionaries who served in England at the same time I was there, who. on return- ing home, continued to meet regularly and maintain the spirit of the mission field.

To this day, on the fourth Sunday of each month, a group of fourteen couples imcst of the returned mission- aries are now married) meets at the home of a member to hold to the fellowship and love of the missionary spirit. We think rather appropriately, we have named ourselves, “The Windsor Cltib.”


When I arrived home in Salt Lake City, I was assigned as a Sunday School teacher and also as instructor of the Elders’ Quorum in the 21st Ward of the Church. In 1940. I was called as a guide on world-famed Temple Square, and have been active in that calling up to the present day. Last year over 600,000 tourists visited Temple Square in Salt Lake City, and were taken through the beautiful grounds and buildings by the voluntary guides. This has given me a wonderful opportunity to keep alive the spirit of preaching the Gospel.


The Church owes a great debt of gratitude to the British people, who have so richly endowed its membership with a strain of blood reflecting the strength and character of a truly great nation. There can be no question that the blood of Israel is in the British Isles in great abundance, and those or us who by ancestry and personal experience in the mission field have had first hand contact with its true power and majesty, should be eternally thankful to our Heavenly Father for this great blessing.’

Obituary: Pearl Louise McGee Jamison, 79, died May 24, 1991 in Salt Lake City, Utah. Available at: http://www.deseretnews.com/article/164772/DEATH–PEARL-JAMISON.html?pg=all, [accessed: 27 October 2016].

Born on November 27, 1911 in Belfast, Northern Ireland to William and Sarah Louise Moore McGee. She married John Jamison January 7, 1932 in Belfast. He preceded her in death July 3, 1961. She worked for many years on Film Row, Salt Lake City, for Columbia Pictures and United Artists, and retains many friends from that era.Pearl was baptized a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in her native Ireland. In her later years, served as a missionary in the member-locator department. She belonged to the Capitol Hill Ward for many years and most recently the Lincoln Ward. She was a member of the British Mission Association.

She is lovingly remembered by son, William Trevor Desmond Jamison and wife, Inez, of Ottawa, Canada; and daughter, Millicent Daphne Pearl Sommerfeld and husband, Werner, of Salt Lake City; nine grandchildren; 14 great-grandchildren; sister, Olive Brennan Newtownards, Northern Ireland; nieces and nephews in England, Ireland and Australia. Preceded in death by parents, brothers, Thomas and William, and sisters, Catherine, Ellen and Ivy. She will be sorely missed by family and friends.

Funeral services Thursday, May 30, 12 noon, in the Lincoln Ward, 2005 South 900 East. Friends may call at Larkin Mortuary, 260 East South Temple, Wednesday evening, 6-8 p.m. and at the ward on Thursday, one hour prior to services. Interment in the Salt Lake City Cemetery.

‘Thank you Snelson Family for a wonderful obituary.

I was a child when I became aquainted with Brother Snelson through the annual Boxing Day parties held by the British Mission Association. I am a granddaughter of George and Amelia Pitts and I appreciate getting to know a bit more about one of the Saints from Britian.’ (2007)

Angela Pitts Vincent, Mesa, Arizona, comment, available at: http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/name/eric-snelson-obituary?pid=1000000091819324&page=2, [accessed: 27 October 2016].