BiographyEzra Taft Benson was born 22 February 1811 in Mendon, Massachusetts, United States to John Perry Benson (1781-1842) and Chloe Taft (1785-1826) and died 3 September 1869 in Ogden, Utah, United States of unspecified causes. He married Pamelia Andrus (1809-1877) 1 January 1831 in Uxbridge, Worcester County, Massachusetts. He married Adeline Brooks Andrus (1813-1898) 27 April 1844 in Nauvoo, Illinois, United States. He married Desdemona Wadsworth Fullmer (1809-1886) 26 January 1846 in Nauvoo, Illinois, United States. He married Eliza Ann Perry (1829-1913) 4 March 1847 in Winter Quarters, Nebraska, United States. He married Lucinda Barton (1826-) 18 March 1847 in Winter Quarters, Nebraska, United States. He married Elizabeth Gollaher (1831-1904) 4 June 1853 in Salt Lake City, Utah, United States. He married Olive Mary Knight (1830-1905) 12 July 1851 in Salt Lake City, Utah, United States. He married Mary Larsen (1843-1926) 15 September 1866 in Salt Lake City, Utah, United States. Ancestors are from the United Kingdom, the United States.
Ezra Taft Benson (February 22, 1811 – September 3, 1869) (commonly referred to as Ezra T. Benson to distinguish him from his great-grandson of the same name) was as an apostle and a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church).
Benson was born in Mendon, Massachusetts, the son of John Benson and Chloe Taft. His father moved to a farm in Uxbridge, Massachusetts in 1817 where he lived for at least 16 of the next 18 years. He managed a hotel in the center of Uxbridge and made a considerable sum of money which he invested in a cotton mill at Holland, Massachusetts, before moving West.
Joins the LDS movement
Benson, along with his wife, was baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on July 19, 1840 in Quincy, Illinois. He had moved to Quincy previously, and first met members of the church when they came there at the time they were driven out of Missouri. In April 1841 the Bensons moved to Nauvoo. On April 27, 1844 Benson married a second wife, Adeline Brooks Andrus, the sister of Pamelia.
Benson was ordained to the office of apostle on July 16, 1846. He replaced John E. Page in the Quorum of the Twelve.
His first mission in the 1840s took him to his birthplace of Mendon, Massachusetts. On this journey he also preached in Chambersburg, Illinois. During his second mission he was in New Jersey serving with John Pack when they received news of Joseph Smith's murder. From December 1844 to May 1845 Benson served another mission during which he served as president of the Boston Conference.
Marriage and Family
Like many early Latter Day Saints, Benson practiced plural marriage. Benson had a total of eight wives and 35 children.
1st Marriage : Pamelia Andrus
Benson married Pamelia Andrus (1809-1877) of Northbridge on January 1, 1832, at Uxbridge. They lived at Uxbridge for the next three years, between 1832 and 1835. They also had lived in Northbridge, on his sister's farm in 1830 and 1831. He and Pamela had children, one of whom died here at Uxbridge in 1833.
2nd Marriage : Adeline Andrus
Adeline Brooks Andrus (1813-1898), sister of Pamelia, would become his first polygamous wife.
3rd Marriage : Desdemona Fullmer
Desdemona Wadsworth Fullmer (1809-1886) - Early convert to the Mormon Church and survivor of the Haun's Mill Massacre. Her father, Peter Fullmer (1774-1857), and brother, David Fullmer (1803-1879) played important roles in the pioneer migration of the Mormon Church to Utah. Her first husband died in 1835. She was then married to the Mormon Prophet, Joseph Smith (1805-1844) in 1843. After Joseph's martyrdom, her third marriage was to early Mormon Apostle, Ezra Taft Benson (1811-1869) as one of his plural wives. No children from this marriage.
Eliza Ann Perry, Lucinda West, Elizabeth Gollaher, Olive Mary Knight, and Mary Larsen.
|Offspring of Ezra Taft Benson and Adeline Brooks Andrus (1813-1898)|
|George Taft Benson (1846-1919)||1 May 1846 Garden Grove, Decatur County, Iowa, United States||16 May 1919 Logan, Cache County, Utah, United States|| Louisa Alexandrine Ballif (1850-1922)|
|Florence Adeline Benson (1851-1852)|| |
|Frank Andrus Benson (1853-1937)|
|Offspring of Ezra Taft Benson and Eliza Ann Perry (1829-1913)|
|Alice Eliza Benson (1848-1923)|| |
|John Perry Benson (1849-1921)|| |
|Malina Adelaide Benson (1851-1918)|| |
|Arin William Benson (1853-1917)|| |
|Carrie Stella Benson (1860-1928)|| |
|Abbie Della Benson (1862-1925)|| |
|Grace Ann Benson (1867-1924)|
|Offspring of Ezra Taft Benson and Elizabeth Gollaher (1831-1904)|
|Fred Gollaher Benson (1854-1915)|| |
|Brigham Young Benson (1858-1937)|| |
|Luella Benson (1860-1881)|| |
|William Culbertson Benson (1862-1937)|| |
|Hyrum Smith Benson (1864-1935)|| |
|Edith Benson (1867-1925)|| |
|Lizzie Gollaher Benson (1869-1946)|
|Offspring of Ezra Taft Benson and Olive Mary Knight (1830-1905)|
|Louisa Benson (1853-1878)|| |
|Heber Benson (1860-)|| |
|Moroni Benson (1861-1934)|| |
|Lorenzo Taft Benson (1863-1950)|| |
|Joseph Benson (1865-1941)|| |
|Ida May Benson (1867-1929)|| |
|Don Carlos Benson (1869-1935)|| |
|Joseph Taft Benson (1865-1941)|
|Offspring of Ezra Taft Benson and Mary Larsen (1843-1926)|
|Walter Taft Benson (1867-)|| |
|Harry Taft Benson (1869-)|
Benson's great-grandson, also named Ezra Taft Benson (1899-1994), also became an apostle of the LDS Church; the younger Benson served as U.S. Secretary of Agriculture in the 1950s and president of the LDS Church in the 1980s and 1990s.
|Church of Latter Day Saints titles|
| Quorum of the Twelve Apostles|
July 16, 1846–September 3, 1869
| Succeeded by|
Charles C. Rich
|NAME||Benson, Ezra T.|
|DATE OF BIRTH||February 22, 1811|
|PLACE OF BIRTH|
|DATE OF DEATH||September 3, 1869|
|PLACE OF DEATH|
- ^ Dew, Sherri. Ezra Taft Benson: A Biography. (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1987) p. 4
- ^ Dew. Benson'. p. 4-5
- ^ a b c d e f g h i j Never a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.
- ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n Term ended by excommunication.
- ^ Term ended by removal of apostleship; was later excommunicated.
- ^ Term ended by suspension of priesthood.
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