Religious services were still banned at the … In November 1918, Joseph F. Smith, the church’s sixth president, had died of pneumonia. He would go on to serve as Church President for the next 26 years. In 1918, more than fifty million people died in an outbreak of flu which spread around the world. Why, he says, the man’s got a record. Joseph Fielding Smith Jr. (July 19, 1876 – July 2, 1972) was an American religious leader and writer who served as the tenth president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) from 1970 until his death in 1972. DEPARTMENT OF SPANISH AND PORTUGUESE BRIGHAM YOUNG UNIVERSITY ∙ 3190 JOSEPH F. SMITH BUILDING ∙ PROVO, UTAH 84602-6702 (801) 422-2837 / FAX: (801) 422-0308 28 May 2020 Dear Colleague, I have been a member of the General Education … The death of President Joseph F. Smith. !” was the command that “came ringing through the halls of the Brigham Young University,” according to the Oct. 16, 1918, edition of the White and Blue campus newspaper. Smith died of pneumonia resulting from pleurisy in Salt Lake City on November 19, 1918, and was succeeded by Heber J. Ironically, the Spanish flu epidemic claimed the life of LDS President Joseph F. Smith, who died of pneumonia “caused by the influenza virus.” Because of the epidemic, the next LDS president and prophet, Heber J. Newspapers reported 20,000 people gathered on Temple Square. Due to the widespread influenza pandemic of 1918–20, a graveside service was held, rather than a public funeral. My brother, John [Gibbs Smith], was very, very upset because he was Captain of the anti-vice squad at the Salt Lake City Police Department. This October marks the 100th anniversary of the deadliest month in Michigan's deadliest year. The Spanish government was the only one giving the correct information without strict government censorship and an estimated 8 million Spaniards succumbed to the flu. I recall so well the lessons and the bearing of testimony.” 7 Despite the efforts of the Board of Health, however, the Spanish flu spread in Utah, reaching 1,500 cases and 117 deaths in just four weeks, even after the ban on public meetings. The Centers for Disease Control says the Spanish Flu was actually first recorded in the United States, despite its name. So the “spring” conference was punted until nearly summer, in early June. Owing to wartime gasoline rationing, attendance was limited to church leaders. 1,2,3,4 An unusual characteristic of this virus was the high death rate it caused among healthy adults 15 to 34 years of age. canceled public attendance at the coming General Conference, first to report flu deaths in its newspapers. Years in Practice: 17 Years Alarming as it may be that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 3/24/20 11:40pm. (Tribune file photo) "Doc" Rogers/Library of Congress via AP) In this 1918 photo made available by the Library of Congress, volunteer nurses from the American Red Cross tend to influenza patients in the Oakland Municipal Auditorium, used as a temporary hospital. The virus was no respecter of prominence. Joseph F. Smith, suffering from poor health for most of the year. After discussing the 1918 flu, the author states that “[o]n November 19, 1918, President Joseph F. Smith died of pneumonia—a lung inflammation caused by the influenza virus.” If I could retitle the post, I would probably title it “How the 1918 Flu Pandemic and the Contemporaneous Death of Mormon President Joseph F. Smith by Pneumonia Killed the Common Sacrament Cup” just to be cautious.] Around January 1918, an outbreak of influenza, known as the Spanish Flu, spread across the world causing heartache and misery for several years. Dr. Smith is affiliated with Mission Hospital, St Joseph Hospital Of Orange and Saint Jude Medical Center. The column to the right addresses the Spanish Flu pandemic, while the next column to the right provides an update on the World War. Spanish flu had first been identified that spring in stateside U.S. Army camps. Due to the widespread influenza pandemic of 1918–20, a graveside service was held, rather than a public funeral. Thousands abandoned quarantined areas and practices to gather for celebrations. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Pandemic Flu Storybook provides readers with an intimate look at the impact pandemic flu events have had on both survivors and the families and friends of non-survivors. From the late 1800s, when Utah became a state, to World War II, Mormonism and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon Church) moved from being an isolated church in Utah to gaining respect from mainstream American society, and becoming more integrated into the country’s culture.