Guide to the Charles W. Nibley Family Papers,
1851-1990

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Overview of the Collection

Creator: Nibley family
Title: Charles W. Nibley Family Papers
Dates: 1851-1990 ( inclusive )
Quantity: 13 boxes (5 linear feet)
Collection Number: USU_COLL MSS 256
Summary: This collection contains Charles W. Nibley's correspondence, financial and personal papers as well as speeches.
Repository: Utah State University.
Manuscript Collections

Merrill-Cazier Library
Utah State University
3000 Old Main Hill
Logan, UT 84322-3000
Phone: 435 797-2663
Fax: 435 797-2880
Email: scweb@usu.edu

Languages: Material in English 

Biographical Note

Charles W. Nibley was born February 5, 1849 near Edinburgh, Scotland the son of James and Jean Wilson Nibley. When Nibley was five years old, his family sailed to the United States and lived with relatives in Rhode Island for five years. In 1860 the Nibley family purchased oxen and a wagon and traveled to the Utah Territory to live with fellow members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the Nibley family had converted to Mormonism in 1844). Upon arriving in the Utah Territory they settled in present day Wellsville where Nibley began working as a clerk in the village store. In 1866 Nibley moved to Brigham City where he worked transporting salt to mines in southern Idaho and co-owned a general store and hotel with Morris Rosenbaum. In 1869 he married his first wife, Rebecca Neibaur.

In 1877 Nibley was called by the LDS Church to serve as a missionary in England, where he preached for two years. After completing his missionary work Nibley returned to Logan, Utah and became the manager of the United Order Lumber Company (a church owned company). Ten months after his return from England Nibley married his second wife, Ellen Ricks. Nibley provided separated houses on Logan's Center Street for each wife.

In 1882 Nibley was elected to the office of Logan City Alderman. Ten days after his election the Edmunds Act passed (this Act made the practice of polygamy illegal and punishable by law), which prompted Nibley to resign from office and go into hiding. In the spring of 1885 Nibley moved Ellen and their son to remote Paris, Idaho to avoid federal marshals who had been hunting for polygamists in the Cache Valley area. That summer in Paris Nibley met and married his third wife Julia Budge, the daughter of Nibley's former mission president.

On November 13, 1885 Nibley was arrested by federal marshals outside of Paris and was transported to Salt Lake City to await trial. In Salt Lake City Nibley escaped from his captors and fled back to Paris, Idaho. For the next three years Nibley evaded federal marshals. In 1888 Nibley arranged (through a friend Fred Turner) to have himself arrested in Logan, tried for unlawful cohabitation before Judge Goodwin, and then acquitted. Prior to the trial, Nibley's friend secretly paid Judge Goodwin $150 to render a judgment in favor of Nibley. Nibley was tried and acquitted.

In 1889 Nibley moved to Oregon to work with David Eccles and George Stoddard in the lumber and railroading business. As a result of this job and other business ventures Nibley became increasingly wealthy.

In 1907 Nibley was called by the LDS Church to serve as the Presiding Bishop (an office that oversaw the financial workings of the entire church), a position he held for the next eighteen years. During his time the church did away with tithing scrip and he placed the church on a strict cash payment basis. He also was influential in getting the church to build the Hotel Utah in downtown Salt Lake City. In 1925 Nibley was called to serve as the second councilor to Heber J. Grant, President of the LDS Church.

Charles W. Nibley died December 11, 1931 and was buried in the Logan Cemetery.

Ellen Jane Ricks Nibley was born March 30, 1856 in Farmington, Utah Territory the daughter of Joel and Sarah B.F Ricks. Three years later Ellen's family moved north and settled in present day Logan. In 1874 Ellen received a graduation certificate after studying telegraphy. Later that year she found work in Mendon at the telegraph office, where she stayed until 1880. (Ellen also taught school during this time period.) In 1875 Ellen was called by Brigham Young to serve as president of the newly formed Young Women's Mutual Improvement Association.

During the spring of 1880 she met Charles W. Nibley, who she married March 30, 1880 in the Salt Lake City Temple. She became Charles’ second of three wives and she resided in Logan. They had five children that lived to adulthood; Joel (1881), Preston (1889), Edna (1890), Florence (1894), and Nathan (1899).

In 1885 Charles took Ellen to remote Paris, Idaho in order to evade federal marshals who where hunting for polygamists. During this period Ellen was often alone because Charles’ business ventures took him elsewhere and he had to hide from federal marshals when he was home. In 1895 Ellen moved back to Logan. From 1902 until her death, Ellen served as a temple worker in both the Logan and Salt Lake City Temples. Ellen died in Logan on February 1, 1935.

Charles W. Nibley, Jr. was born April 7, 1872 in Brigham City, Utah Territory to Charles W. and Rebecca Neibaur Nibley. In 1895 Nibley was called by the LDS Church to serve as a missionary in the eastern United States, where he served for two years. On September 28, 1898 he married Marie Ollie Thatcher in the Logan Temple. They later had five children that lived to adulthood. Nibley died October 19, 1959 in Los Angeles, California.

Content Description

This collection contains the papers of Charles W. Nibley and his family. This collection contains Nibley's correspondence (1878-1931), financial and personal papers as well as speeches by and about Nibley. The Nibley family papers consist of an Ellen Ricks Nibley diary (1903-1934), four Charles W. Nibley, Jr.'s missionary diaries (1895-1897), family correspondence, family history and genealogy papers, oral history interviews conducted by Ken Godfrey with the Nibley family during 1997 and 1999, a family heirloom, and Nibley family books.

Use of the Collection

Restrictions on Access :  

No restrictions on use, except: not available through interlibrary loan.

Restrictions on Use :  

It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances.

Permission to publish material from the Charles W. Nibley Family Papers must be obtained from the Special Collections Manuscript Curator and/or the Special Collections Department Head.

Preferred Citation :  

Initial Citation: Charles W. Nibley Family Papers USU_COLL MSS 256, Box [ ]. Special Collections and Archives. Utah State University Merrill-Cazier Library. Logan, Utah.

Following Citations:USU_COLL MSS 256, USUSCA.

Administrative Information

Arrangement :

Arranged by topic and date.

Processing Note :  

Processed in June of 2005.

Acquisition Information :  

The materials in this collection were donated to USU Special Collections by various members, descendants, and friends of the Charles W. Nibley family during the period of 1997 to 2005.

Related Materials :  

The Nibley Family Photograph Collection PO315.

USU Special Collections contains additional materials that are connected to the CW Nibley family businesses, and these items are housed as part of COLL MSS 238. These items include; Bd Ms 11: Sumpter Valley Railroad Company Stock Register (1891-1910), Bd Ms 25-26: Oregon Lumber Company Stock Registers (1904-1933), and Bd Ms 30-31 & 94: Eccles Lumber Company papers (1889-1921).

Future Additions :  

This list is a working inventory. USU Special Collections & Archives continues to receive material from the Nibley family that will be added to this inventory.)

Bibliography :  Source:
  • Christensen, Michael E., "Charles W. Nibley: A Case Study of Polygamy," Journal of Mormon History , 1980.
  • Sorenson, Gerri Waters, "The Bishop's Second Wife: The Life and Diary of Ellen Ricks Nibley," USU MA Thesis, 2001 (call # 920 N512-So).

Detailed Description of the Collection

Outgoing correspondence of C. W. Nibley, business and legal documents, and poetry., 1879-1935>
1 box, 40 folders
Container(s)
Description
Dates
Box
Folder
1 1 Letters sent to Julia Budge 1879-1880
1 2 Letters sent to Julia Budge Nibley 1894-1896
1 3 Letters sent to Julia Budge Nibley 1897-1900
1 4 Letters sent to Julia Budge Nibley 1901-1924
1 5 Letters sent to Julia Budge Nibley 1925
1 6 Letters sent to Julia Budge Nibley 1929-1931
1 7 Letter sent to CW Nibley, Jr. 1879
1 8 Letters sent to Heber J. Grant 1921
1 9 Letters sent to Luther Howell 1920-1930
1 10 Letter sent to Margaret Meldrum 1921
1 11 Letters sent to Anna Nibley (Bullen) 1925-1928
1 12 Letter sent to Barbara Nibley 1927
1 13 Letters sent to Charles Nibley Bullen 1930-1931
1 14 Letters sent to Ellen Ricks Nibley 1925-1931
1 15 Letter sent to Hugh Nibley 1924
1 16 Letters sent to Julia Nibley (Howell) 1897-1931
1 17 Letter sent to eight Nibley daughters 1925
1 18 Letter received from James Farley 1938
1 19 Letter received from Joseph F. Smith 1895
1 20 Letter received from eight Nibley daughters 1925
1 21 Letter to Julia Budge Nibley from R. Nibley 1898
1 22 Letter to Julia Budge Nibley from Joseph F. Smith 1910
1 23 Letter to Preston Nibley from Melvin J. Ballard 1935
1 24 Unidentified letters 1883
1 25 Receipt for $15,000 from C. W. Nibley to Brigham Young College for Nibley Hall
(2 items)
1908
1 26 Legal documents concerning the Amalgamated Sugar Company
(4 items)
Undated
1 27 Warranty deeds to Rebecca N. Nibley and Julia Budge Nibley
(2 items)
Undated
1 28 $1,000,000 gold note concerning the Amalgamated Sugar Company 1916
1 29 Birthday celebration dinner menus for C. W. Nibley 1913-1916
1 30 Birthday celebration dinner menus for C. W. Nibley 1917-1918
1 31 Birthday celebration dinner menus for C. W. Nibley 1923
1 32 Birthday celebration dinner menus for C. W. Nibley 1924-1925
1 33 Birthday celebration dinner menus for C. W. Nibley 1926-1928
1 34 Church dinner menus 1918, 1922, and one undated
1 35 "Chimes from Ell's Belles," A collection of poetry written by Alex Nibley for birthday parties.
Illustrated by Richard Nibley. Forward by Hugh Nibley.
Undated
1 36 Poetry and short stories written by Alex Nibley
(4 items)
Undated
1 37 Resolution of Respect for C. W. Nibley
(3 items)
Undated
1 38 List of those who sent flowers to C. W. Nibley's funeral Undated
1 39 Thank you card for expressions of sympathy from C. W. Nibley family Undated
1 40 Note to William B. Preston from CW Nibley circa 1880s

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Articles and speeches by and about C. W. Nibley and Nibley Park, Salt Lake City, 1900-1980
Container(s)
Description
Dates
Box
Folder
2 1 Logan Temple Lecture Typescript Undated
2 2 Articles written by C. W. Nibley 1910-1928
Box
Folder
2 2 "Attention Voters!" 1900
2 2 "President Brigham Young," Deseret News,
Given as an address on KSL Radio June 3, 1928
1928 June 9
2 2 "Greetings from the First Presidency" Undated
2 2 "The Mormon Finance System," Improvement Era 1913 July
2 2 "The Perfect Law of Liberty," Liahona; The Elder's Journal 1910 January 29
2 2 "A Message from the First Presidency" 1930
2 3 Articles written by C. W. Nibley 1918-1927
Box
Folder
2 3 "Testimony of Presiding Bishop Charles W. Nibley", Liahona; The Elder's Journal 1918 November 26
2 3 "Tithing: A Discourse" 1927 October 9
2 3 "Reminiscences of President Joseph F. Smith," Improvement Era 1919 January
2 3 "Political Economy" Undated
2 3 "Sister States" Undated
2 4 Biographical sketch of C. W. Nibley Undated
2 5 Articles about C. W. Nibley 1932, 1980
Box
Folder
2 5 "A Great Man Called", The Latter-day Saints’ Millennial Star
(2 copies)
1932 January 14
2 5 "President Charles W. Nibley: An Appreciation", The Relief Society Magazine
(2 copies)
1932 January
2 5 "Bishop Nibley"
(Unknown author)
Undated
2 5 "Bishop C. W. Nibley", Vision & Faith of the Latter-day Saints Undated
2 5 "President Charles W. Nibley", Book of Testimonies. Undated
2 5 "Charles W. Nibley", The Bee of the Salt Lake Rotary Club Undated
2 6 "Greatness in Men: President Charles W. Nibley", Improvement Era
(2 copies)
1932 December
2 6 "Charles W. Nibley", Latter-day Saint Biographical Encyclopedia Undated
2 6 "Charles W. Nibley"
(Unknown author)
Undated
2 6 "Charles W. Nibley: A Case Study of Polygamy",Journal of Mormon History 1980
2 6 "Pioneers and Prominent Men of Utah-1862" Undated
2 7 Materials concerning Nibley Park Undated

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Nibley Family Papers, 1851-1928
Container(s)
Description
Dates
Box
Folder
3 1 Funeral service of Mrs. Rebecca N. Nibley 1928
3 2 Ellen R. Nibley Speech to the Sons of Pioneers, Cache State 1916
3 3 Ellen R. Nibley diary 1903-1934
3 4 Ellen R. Nibley diary
(photocopy)
1903-1934
3 5 Ellen R. Nibley tithing receipts Undated
3 6 "Julia Budge Nibley", by Julia Nibley Howell and "Julia Budge Nibley", by Suza Young Gates
(2 copies)
Undated
3 7 Funeral service program of Julia Budge Nibley and media responses to her death 1938
3 8 James Nibley family record 1851
3 9 Jean Wilson Nibley, papers Undated
3 10 Nibley family in Lothian, Scotland Undated
3 11 Sarah Fiske Allen, papers Undated
3 12 Ann Hyer Budge, papers Undated
3 13 Florence Nibley Hatch, papers Undated
3 14 Julia Nibley Howell, papers Undated
3 15 Anna Nibley Bullen, papers Undated
3 16 Hugh W. Nibley, papers Undated
3 17 Reid Nibley, papers Undated
3 18 Photocopied photographs of Charles W. Nibley with General Authorities of the LDS Church Undated
3 19 Photocopied photographs of the Nibley family Undated
3 20 Photocopied photographs of the Nibley family Undated
4 1 Nibley family group records and history
(record of temple work)
Undated
4 2 Items from a Nibley family scrapbook
(photocopied)
1920-1935
4 3 Items from a Nibley family scrapbook, continued
(photocopied)
1920-1935
4 4 Items from a Nibley family scrapbook, continued
(photocopied)
1920-1935
4 5 Items from a Nibley family scrapbook, continued
(photocopied)
1920-1935
5 1 Correspondence
(primarily between CW Nibley II and III)
1923-1924
5 2 Correspondence
(primarily between CW Nibley II and III)
1929-1931
5 3 Newspaper clippings about C. W. Nibley Undated
5 4 Family history of James Nibley Undated
5 5 Misc papers; Nibley chronology, and train passes Undated
6 Charles W. Nibley, Jr.'s missionary diaries, eastern United States 1895-1897
Box
6 Volume 1 1895-1896
6 Volume 2 1896
6 Volume 3 1896-1897
6 Volume 4 1897
7 1 Photocopy of CW Nibley, Jr.'s missionary diaries, Vol. 1 Undated
7 2 Photocopy of CW Nibley, Jr.'s missionary diaries, Vol. 2 Undated
7 3 Photocopy of CW Nibley, Jr.'s missionary diaries, Vol. 3 Undated
7 4 Photocopy of CW Nibley, Jr.'s missionary diaries, Vol. 4 Undated
7 5 Biographical information on Ellen Ricks Nibley Undated
7 6 Biographical information on Julia Budge Nibley Undated
7 7 CW Nibley genealogy/temple work Undated
7 8 List of Nibley manuscript items held by the LDS Church Archives Undated
7 9 List of Nibley manuscript items held by the Utah State Historical Society Undated
7 10 Nibley family correspondence 1977-1997
7 11 "In Memorandum of Charles W. Nibley"
(handwritten book of tributes to Nibley from various officials and friends)
1932
8 1 Nibley family scrapbook
(photocopy)
1930-1950
8 2 Nibley family scrapbookcontinued
(photocopy)
Undated
8 3 Nibley family scrapbookcontinued
(photocopy)
Undated
8 4 Nibley family scrapbookcontinued
(photocopy)
Undated
8 5 Nibley family scrapbookcontinued
(photocopy)
Undated
8 6 Nibley family scrapbookcontinued
(photocopy)
Undated
8 7 Nibley family scrapbookcontinued
(photocopy)
Undated
8 8 Nibley family scrapbookcontinued
(photocopy)
Undated
8 9 Nibley family scrapbookcontinued
(photocopy)
Undated
8 10 Nibley family scrapbookcontinued
(photocopy)
Undated
8 11 Nibley family scrapbookcontinued
(photocopy)
Undated
8 12 Nibley family scrapbook continued
(photocopy)
Undated
8 13 Funeral program for David E. Robinson 1970
8 14 Papers concerning the CW Nibley Scholarship Fund Undated
8 15 Invitations for CW Nibley's 150th Birthday Celebration 1999
8 16 Papers about the CW Nibley's Center Street Logan home Undated
8 17 "Early Arts and Crafts of the West," Daughters of Utah Pioneers 1940 April
8 18 "Mormon Colonization in the West," Daughters of Utah Pioneers 1941 April

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Oral History Interviews with the Nibley family , 1997-1999

Conducted by Ken Godfrey and others.

Container(s)
Description
Dates
Typescripts
Box
Folder
9 1 Interview release forms Undated
9 2 List of questions asked by interviewers Undated
9 3 Complied recollections of CW Nibley by his grandchildren Undated
9 4 Group interview, Bob Nibley, George Cannon, and Betty Jean Sage 1999
9 5 Bullen, Charles W. 1998
9 6 Cannon, Charles 1999
9 7 Hatch, Eastman 1997
9 8 Howell, Richard 1997
9 9 Johnson, Nan 1999
9 10 Murdoch, Lucy 1999
9 11 Meldrum, Nibley 1997
9 12 Nibley, Hugh 1998
9 13 Nibley, James 1998
9 14 Nibley, Jeff (and Loch Grant) 1998
9 15 Nibley, Preston 1998
9 16 Nibley, Reid 1999
9 17 Nibley, Robert 1997
9 18 Richards, Barbara 1999
9 19 Stringham, Teddy 1999
9 20 Whitney, Horace 1997
Box
10 Cassette Recordings of oral history interviews with the Nibley family
Conducted by Ken Godfrey and others
1997-1999

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Family heirloom, Undated
Container(s)
Description
Dates
Box
11 CW Nibley’s clothing brush Undated

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Books that belonged to various Nibley family members, 1900-1934
Container(s)
Description
Dates
Box
12 Bartlett, John, Familiar Quotations
Little, Brown, & Company, Boston
1914
12 Carlyle, Thomas, Past and Present Chartism and Sartor Resartus
Harper & Brothers Publishers, New York (contains a personal inscription by CW Nibley to Moses Thatcher)
Undated
12 Book of Mormon
Deseret News Printers & Publishers
1900
12 Latter-day Saint Hymns
Deseret Book Company
1927
12 Deseret Sunday School Songs
Deseret Sunday School Union
1909
12 The Nibley Family, Reminiscences, Charles W. Nibley
Stevens & Wallis Inc.
1934
13 Rix, Guy S., History and Genealogy of the Ricks Family
Skelton Publishing Co. Salt Lake City
1908
13 Christensen, Michael E., “The Making of a Leader; A Biography of Charles W. Nibley to 1890” University of Utah Dissertation
(contains handwritten corrections by Nibley family)
1978
13 Hicks, J.L., The Oregon Lumber Company and Sumpter Valley Ry
Browning Photo Company, Portland, OR (two copies)
1897

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Subjects

    • Family Names :
    • Nibley family.
    • Personal Names :
    • Nibley, Charles Wilson, 1849-1931.
    • Nibley, Ellen Jane Ricks, 1856-1935.
    • Subject Terms :
    • Mormon Church--Utah--History.
    • Mormons--Utah--History
    • Polygamy--Utah--History.
    • Geographical Names :
    • Cache Valley (Utah and Idaho)--History.
    • Logan (Utah)--History.
    • Corporate Names :
    • Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Presiding Bishopric--History.

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