A. Milton Musser Ill

At the Dr. Grover L.D.S. hospital this morning a delicate operation was performed upon A. Milton Musser and despite the fact that he is in his eightieth year, the operation was pronounced successful and there is every indication of a speedy recovery. The operation was performed by Drs. Musser, Allan and Middleton.

[Deseret News, Sept. 24, 1909]

[transcribed and proofread by David Grow, Jan. 2006]


A. Milton Musser Called By Death
Life of Great Usefulness Ended by Hemorrhages After Operation

Introduced City Telephone
Was One of the Great Builders of the Industries of the State of Utah

With the death of A. Milton Musser which occurred at Dr. Groves L.D.S. hospital at 3:40 o’clock yesterday afternoon, one of the best known and most highly respected citizens of the state of Utah passed to his final reward. His death followed a successful operation in the forenoon for a complication of ailments, but hemorrhages set in and his advanced age, 79 years, militated against his recovery. His family was prostrated with grief at the news of his death. No arrangements have as yet been announced for the funeral.
Milton Musser was born in Donegal township, Lancaster county, Pennsylvania, May 20, 1830, and was the son of Samuel Musser and Ann Barr Musser. He was about 2 years old when his father died, leaving his mother a widow with four children. His early education was considerably interfered with by the necessity of assisting his mother in earning a living for the family. About the year 1837 the family removed to Illinois and settled near Quincy, the other having married Abraham Bitner. The latter died a few years alter, and the family removed to Nauvoo, after the mother had been converted to the “Mormon” faith by the preaching of elders in the neighborhood.

She reached Nauvoo in 1846, and found the city had been deserted by the great body of the Saints, who had begun their western exodus. With the remnant, who were too poor to move, the widow and her children were driven across the Mississippi river into Iowa by the mob.

Youthful Defender

Mr. Musser was one of the youthful defenders of Nauvoo and was within a few feet of Capt. Anderson and his son Augustus when they were shot down by the mob on Sept. 12, 1846. On reaching Eddyville, Iowa, young Musser found employment as a clerk in a store, and remained there until 1851 when he started for Utah. On his way at Kanesville, Iowa, May 24, 1851, he became a member of the Church being baptized by Elder James Allred and confirmed by Elder Orson Hyde.

Young Musser reached Salt Lake in the fall of 1851, and went to work as clerk and scribe in the general tithing office. The following year he was set apart for a mission to Hindostan, arriving in Calcutta in the spring of 1853. After five years he returned to Utah, having circumscribed the earth in his travels. In 1858 he was appointed traveling bishop in the Utah and held this position without intermission until 1876. Bishop Musser was one of the 10 incorporators of the Deseret Telegraph company, which, on Dec. 1, 1866, was opened for service between Salt Lake and Ogden, although the incorporation did not occur until Jan. 1867. Several years after retiring from the active management of the telegraph company, Bishop Musser introduced the telephone into Salt Lake City and introduced a number of short circuits. In April, 1872, he was appointed assistant trustee-in-trust for the Church, and a few years later he was assigned to perform a mission to his native state, Pennsylvania.

As Railroad Builder

He was one of the incorporators of the Zion’s Saving Bank & Trust company and of the State Bank of Utah. He was a promoter of the Great Western Iron company, the Utah Eastern, Salt Lake & Fort Douglas, and Juab, Sanpete & Sevier Valley railroads. For years he was prominently connected with the Deseret Agricultural and Manufacturing society, which institution is no known as the Utah State Fair association, Bishop Musser being a director, secretary, treasurer, and general traveling agent for the same. He was a director, treasurer, and secretary of the Utah Silk association, and president of the Utah Bee association.

Mr. Musser was for nearly 20 years prior to statehood, fish and game commissioner for the territory, and during his incumbency millions of choice fish were planted in the waters of the state. He was an extremely practical man, and rendered valuable service in the building of temples, emigration matters, colonization, co-operation and irrigation projects, and was especially prominent in the building up of home industries.

For a number of years and until he entered the high priests’ quorum, April 25, 1874, he was one of the seven presidents of the Fifty-seventh quorum of Seventy.

Was Fluent Writer

Mr. Musser was a fluent writer and his style was peculiarly pleasing and convincing. Among the pamphlets written by him was “Fruits of Mormonism,” published in 1876; he started the Utah Farmer, and published “The Palantic,” a monthly serial on miscellaneous subjects, and he was a regular contributor to the publications of the Church.

Mr. Musser was one of the stalwarts in the building up of Salt Lake City and Utah, and his decease will be sincerely regretted by thousands of the inhabitants of the state.

Mr. Musser was married four times and at his death was survived by two widows, Mrs. Mary White Musser and Mrs. Anna Seegmiller Musser. To him were born 26 children, 16 of whom are now living. There are 22 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. The children are Don Carlos, Joseph, …, …., Parley, …, Arthur, Minnie, Leo, Frederick, Moroni, William and Roscoe Musser, Mrs. Annie Sheets, Mrs. Gertrude Howard and Mrs. Eva James.

[Deseret News, Sept. 25, 1909]
[transcribed and proofread by David Grow, Jan. 2006]


A. Milton Musser Is Laid At Rest
President Joseph F. Smith and Other Prominent Church Officials Testify to his Virtue

The funeral of A. Milton Musser, which was held yesterday afternoon in the Second ward chapel, was attended by a large number of people. The hall was filled to overflowing, the attendance being estimated at fully 800 people. The meetinghouse was decorated with palms and flowers and the picture of deceased was draped at the back of the stand. The floral offerings were numerous and beautiful.

The musical part of the service included the solo, “I know that my Redeemer lives,” by Charles R. Pike, and “Abide with me,” by Messrs. Pike, Robinson, Siddoway and White. Robert Siddoway also sang, “God be with you till we meet again,” and Horace S. Ensign sang, “Face to face.” The speakers were President Joseph F. Smith, Anthon H. Lund, Francis M. Lyman, B.S. Hinckley, Hugh J. Cannon and Bishop Heber C. Iverson.

President Joseph F. Smith delivered an impressive sermon on life, present and hereafter, and the importance of the latter-day work. Reference was also made to the sterling wroth of A. Milton Musser. President Anthon H. Lund spoke specially of the cheerfulness and kindness of deceased. F.M. Lyman referred to the work of deceased in the missionary cause. B.S. Hinckley praised the character of the dead man, especially of his desire to encourage young men. After a short talk from President Hug Cannon of Liberty stake, telling of a conversation he had with deceased a few days before his death, when he expressed himself as being a firm believe in the resurrection. Bishop Iverson, in conclusion, referred to the devotion of Milton Musser to his family and his home life. His respect for authority, and his desire to encourage young missionaries by always attending the farewells in the ward was also referred to by Bishop Iverson. The fact that he had once traveled round the world without purse or scrip, and that he and his sons had spent 25 years in missionary work was also spoken of. Interment was in the city cemetery.

[Deseret News, Sept. 29, 1909]

[transcribed and proofread by David Grow, Jan. 2006]


Passing Events

Amos Milton Musser, assistant Church historian, died in Salt Lake City, Friday, September 24, 1909. He was born in Lancaster county, Pa., May 20, 1830, and joined the Church by baptism, May 24, 1851, though he had been nominally a member some years previous. He came to Utah in the fall of 1851, and has ever since been one of the prominent workers in the community, in civil, industrial and religious affairs. He circled the globe on a mission to India in 1851, and was traveling bishop of the Church from 1858 to 1876. He was one of the incorporators of the Deseret Telegraph Company, and introduced the phonograph and telephone to Salt Lake City. He has written several Church pamphlets and tracts, and in 1887 issued the Palantic. He was connected for years, as secretary, with the Deseret Agricultural & Manufacturing Association, and took a leading part in the Bee Association and the Utah Silk Association, and for nearly twenty years prior to statehood was fish and game commissioner. In many other industries, corporations and ways he devoted his ability to the building up of the community. He leaves a large and honored family and a name that will long live among the people.

[Improvement Era, 1909]


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