Joseph Young was the elder brother of the famous
Young. But for that accident of birth, this shining luminary would
have been known as among the great ones of early Mormonism. As it
is, he is normally thought of in terms of his brother.
He was born 7 April 1797 in Hopkinton, Middlesex County, Massachusetts.
the son of John Young and Nabbie Howe.
His childhood and early youth were spent at
home, where his kind and affectionate nature was stimulated by the tender
treatment and Christian precept, characterizing his parents and their family.
He imbibed at an early period of life the spirit of religion, and became
an enthusiastic church member. Joining the Methodists, he soon began to
preach their doctrines and was thus engaged, when, in the early spring
of 1832, his brother, Brigham Young, brought the glad tidings of the restored
gospel of Jesus Christ, as announced by the Prophet Joseph
Smith. His religious enthusiasm proved to be a genuine love of truth,
rather than bigoted devotion to a sectarian creed, and he was easily converted
to the principles of the gospel, which he received in a grateful and believing
He was baptized 6 April 1832 by Daniel Bowen
in Columbia, Pennsylvania and ordained an Elder April 1832 by Ezra Landon.
Preached in New York in the spring of 1832. He served a Mission to Earnestown-Loughborough,
Upper Canada, in the summer of 1832 and traveled to Kirtland, Ohio in November
1832. He served a second mission to Earnestown - Loughborough in the winter
He married Jane Adeline Bicknell 18 February 1834
in Kirtland. He fathered eleven children by her : Jane A., Joseph, Seymour
B., Marcus De LaGrande, John Calvin, Mary L., Vilate, Chloe, Rhoda, Henriette,
Answering the call to relieve the suffering saints
of Zion, he accompanied Zion's Camp in 1834. Perhaps because of his faithfulness
in answering this call, he was ordained seventy 28 February 1835. He was
ordained one of the seven Presidents of First Quorum of Seventy 1 March
1835 under the hands of the Prophet. After it was discovered that the senior
president, Hazen Aldrich had previously been
ordained a High Priest and surrendered his position in the quorum, Joseph
became the senior or seventh president. He served in this position 1835-81.
Elder Young served a mission to New York and Massachusetts
with Burr Riggs in 1835. Then, returning to Kirtland, he participated in
dedication of Kirtland Temple in 1836. Later in 1836, after having received
his blessings in the Temple at Kirtland, agreeable to the Prophet's instructions,
he accompanied his brother Brigham to the East, to visit among their relatives
and friends; they preached the gospel to them and bore testimony of the
latter-day work. This mission occupied several months, and subsequently
many of their relatives and friends came into the Church.
He was a charter member of and owned stock in Kirtland
Safety Society. Then with the apostasy occasioned by the failure of that
institution swirling about him he became a member of the Kirtland Camp
in 1838 and left the apostates in Kirtland 6 July 1838.
He arrived at Haun's Mill, Missouri 28 October 1838.
Just two days later he witnessed Haun's Mill massacre on October 30, 1838.
He was expelled from Missouri 1839 by Governor Lilburn Boggs despicable
and infamous "Extermination Order." He located temporarily in Quincy, Illinois
in May of 1839, then moved to Nauvoo in the spring of 1840. There he was
occupied in painting and glazing business
Joseph Young received his endowment 3 February 1844.
He became a member of Council of Fifty 1 March 1845, then went on a mission
to Ohio 1844 to campaign for Joseph Smith as president of United States.
Elder Young was sealed to Lucinda Allen in Nauvoo 1846 by whom he fathered
four children: Josephine, Phineas Howe, John C., and Willard. In 1846 he
was sealed to Lydia Hemming who bore him two children: Isaac and Caroline.
He was sealed to Mary Ann Burnham in Nauvoo 1846. Two children: Elmyra
Because of the continueing persecutions after the
Prophet's Martyrdom Joseph left Illinois 1846. He remained in Winter Quarters
and Carterville, Iowa, until 1850 and arrived in Utah September 1850. He
settled in Salt Lake City.
After arrival in the west he was sealed to Sarah
Jane Kinsman 1868 at Salt Lake City, Utah. She bore him two children: Edward
and Sarah K.
He served a final mission, this time to the British Isles 1870. He was
greatly beloved by the people everywhere, being one of those lovable dispositions
that always attract those with whom they become associated. He was a benevolent
and merciful man, full of kindness and good works, and full of integrity
to the cause he had espoused. He never wearied of proclaiming its principles.
"Uncle Joseph," as he was familiarly called, died
in Salt Lake City, Utah, July 16, 1881. He had for several weeks succumbed
to general weakness and debility incident to old age, and quietly fell
asleep, surrounded by loving kindred and friends. His body was free from
disease, and his last days were devoid of pain. Like a shock of corn fully
ripe he was gathered home. Having fulfilled his mission on the earth and
lived beyond the time usually allotted to man, he realized in his closing
hours on earth that "the end of the righteous is peace."