John Taylor (1808-1887)
1 Nov. 1808–25 July 1887. Preacher, editor, publisher, politician. Born at Milnthorpe, Westmoreland, England. Son of James Taylor and Agnes Taylor, members of Church of England. Around age sixteen, joined Methodist church and was local preacher. Migrated from England to York, York Township, York Co., Home District, Upper Canada, ca. 1832. Married Leonora Cannon, 28 Jan. 1833, at York. Baptized into Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by Parley P. Pratt, 9 May 1836, and ordained an elder shortly after. Appointed to preside over churches in Upper Canada. Ordained a high priest by Joseph Smith and others, 21 Aug. 1837. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Moved to Far West, Caldwell Co., Missouri, 1838. Ordained member of Quorum of the Twelve by Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimball, 19 Dec. 1838, at Far West. Served mission to England, 1839–1841. In Nauvoo, Hancock Co., Illinois, served as member of city council, judge advocate of Nauvoo Legion, and editor of and Member of Nauvoo Masonic Lodge. Admitted to Council of Fifty, 11 Mar. 1844. Participated in plural marriage during Joseph Smith’s lifetime. Present when Joseph and Hyrum Smith were murdered in jail at Carthage, Hancock Co., 27 June 1844. Served mission to England, 1846–1847. Arrived in Salt Lake Valley, 1847. Elected associate judge of provisional state of Deseret, 12 Mar. 1849. Served mission to France and Germany, 1849–1852; arranged for translation of Book of Mormon into French and published (The star of Deseret). In Germany, supervised translation of Book of Mormon into German and published (Zion’s banner). Appointed to preside over branches in eastern U.S., 1854. Editor of the New York City, 1855–1857. Member of Utah territorial legislature, 1857–1876. Following death of Brigham Young, presided over church from 1877 to 1887. Ordained president of church, 10 Oct. 1880. Died at Kaysville, Davis Co., Utah Territory. Buried in Salt Lake City.
Retrieved with permission from The Joseph Smith Papers.