Benson, Ezra Taft

Alternative names
Dates:
Birth 1899-08-04
Death 1994-05-30
English

Biographical notes:

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture under Eisenhower, apostle and later president of the LDS church.

From the description of Speeches, 1966-1976. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122462756

Ezra Taft Benson was United States Secretary of Agriculture January 21, 1953 – January 20, 1961.

From the guide to the AV 14 Ezra Taft Benson U. S. Secretary of Agriculture audio recordings collection 1954-1977 (Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Church History Library)

Ezra Taft Benson served in the Eisenhower Presidency, as an Apostle, and later President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

From the description of Ezra Taft Benson letter to Margaret Pitzer, 1953. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 368059168

Ezra Taft Benson, the thirteenth president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, is the son of Sarah S. Dunkley and George Taft. He was raised on the family farm. He entered Utah State Agricultural College at Logan in 1918 and stayed there until 1921 when he left for the church's required period of missionary work. His two years were spent in Europe. Benson returned to the farm but was able to complete his B.S. degree at Brigham Young University in 1926. Later that year he married Flora Smith Amussen. In 1929 Benson began work with the University of Idaho, first as county agricultural agent in Preston and then in 1930 as head of a new department of agricultural economics and marketing. He also helped organize the Idaho Cooperative Council, in part as a response to the Depression, and in 1933 became its secretary. Through this time Benson remained an active Latter-day Saint and served a stint as president of the Boise stake (congregation). Benson represented the council in Washington, D.C., for a number of years and as a result in 1939 was invited to become the executive secretary of the National Council of Farmer Cooperatives. Shortly after the beginning of World War II, he was asked by President Franklin D. Roosevelt to serve on the National Agricultural Advisory Commission. He emerged, however, as a major critic of the Roosevelt policy of farm subsidies and control. In Washington Benson also served as president of the Washington stake of his church. In 1943 Benson was selected as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles which head the administration of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He retired from public life and moved to Salt Lake City to take up his duties there. He served as president of the European mission and assumed the task of coordinating relief work after the end of the war. Through the 1940s, however, he kept his hand in farm issues and remained a constant critic of what he considered the government's paternalistic intervention in the farming business. In 1952 President Dwight D. Eisenhower selected Benson as the new U.S. Secretary of Agriculture. He was granted a leave of absence from the church to assume his new duties in Washington. He served in that position through all eight years of the Eisenhower administration.

From the description of Benson, Ezra Taft, 1899-1994 (U.S. National Archives and Records Administration). naId: 10580699

Ezra Taft Benson was born on 4 August 1899 to George Taft Benson Jr. and Sarah Dunkley in Idaho. He married Flora Amussen in 1926 and received his master's degree in Agriculture from Iowa State College in 1927. In 1950, he joined the cabinet of President Dwight D. Eisenhower as Secretary of Agriculture. He remained in that position until 1958. In 1943, Benson was ordained to the LDS Church's Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. He became president of the Church in 1985 and served until his death in 1994.

From the guide to the Ezra Taft Benson speeches, 1966-1976, (J. Willard Marriott Library, University of Utah)

Benson served as the United States Secretary of Agriculture during the Eisenhower administration from 1953-1961.

From the guide to the MS 8568 Ezra Taft Benson Department of Agriculture papers 1953-1961 (Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Church History Library)

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, 1952-1960. Member of Council of the Twelve Apostles.

From the guide to the MS 11519 Ezra T. Benson files circa 1936-1968 (Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Church History Library)

Ezra T. Benson served as Secretary of Agriculture for the United Stares and President of the LDS Church.

From the description of Ezra T. Benson photographs, circa 1940s-1970s. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 367947638

United States Secretary of Agriculture and 13th president of the Mormon Church.

From the description of Letter, 1963. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122486751

From the guide to the Ezra Taft Benson letter, 1963, (L. Tom Perry Special Collections)

Politician and fourteenth president of the Mormon Church.

From the description of Joseph Smith : prophet to our generation, 1981. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 145435596

Theodore Roosevelt Dalton was born 3 July 1901 in Carroll County, Virginia, the son of Currell and Lodoska Maritn Dalton. he received his B.A. from the College of William and Mary as well as his law degree. Dalton was Commonwealth's Attorney for Radford, Virginia and state senator from 1944-1960. He was the Republican Party candidate for governor in 1953 and 1957. Dalton was appointed federal judge for the Western District of Virginia. His adopted son was John N. Dalton who served as governor of Virginia. Ted Dalton died 30 October 1989.

From the guide to the Ted Dalton Papers, 1933-1978, 1952-1959., (Special Collections, Earl Gregg Swem Library, College of William and Mary)

Cabinet member, Secretary of Agriculture; interviewee b.1899.

From the description of Reminiscences of Ezra Taft Benson : oral history, 1967. (Columbia University In the City of New York). WorldCat record id: 122411610

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Subjects:

  • Roads--Virginia
  • Christmas music
  • Patriotism--Speeches, addresses, etc
  • Farmers
  • Marriage--Religious aspects--Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
  • Cabinet officers--Interviews
  • Scouting
  • Segregation in education--Virginia
  • Insurance, Automobile--Virginia
  • Cold War
  • Government
  • Cabinet officers
  • Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
  • Frontier and pioneer life
  • Communism--Speeches, addresses, etc
  • Patronage, Political--United States
  • Mormon Church--Apostles--Correspondence
  • Anti-communist movements--Speeches, addresses, etc
  • Scouting program
  • Mormon Church--Presidents
  • Politics and government relations
  • Birthdays
  • College of William and Mary--History--20th century
  • Religion
  • Legislation
  • Mormon Church--Religious education
  • International relations
  • Republican Party (U.S. : 1854- )
  • Agriculture
  • Mormonism (Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)
  • Religious education--Speeches, addresses, etc
  • Religious education--Philosophy--Speeches, addresses, etc
  • Press conferences
  • History--Religious aspects
  • Communism--United States
  • Church government
  • Mormon pioneers

Occupations:

  • Stake presidents
  • General Authorities

Places:

  • Europe (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Utah (as recorded)
  • Quincy (Ill.) (as recorded)
  • Soviet Union (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Cache Valley (Utah and Idaho) (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Scandinavia (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Europe (as recorded)
  • Near East (as recorded)