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Rudger Clawson

religious leader

Rudger Clawson, religious leader. member Council of 12 Apostles since 1898 (president since 1921), mem; member and 1st president of Ch; member General Board of Education.


Clawson, Rudger was born on March 12, 1857 in Salt Lake City, Utah, United States. Son of Hyrum Bradley and Margaret Gay (Judd) Clawson.


Educated private schools and University of Deseret (now University of Utah).


One of the mobbers shot and killed his companion, Joseph Standing. One of the mobbers then turned and pointed to Clawson, and said, "Shoot that man!" Clawson coolly faced the mob and folded his arms. He exclaimed, "Shoot!" The mob soon dispersed in the face of Clawson's defiance and willingness to face the mob.

He brought the body of his deceased missionary companion back to Salt Lake City, where a public funeral was held in the Tabernacle. Clawson became somewhat of a celebrity for his bravery that day. August 1882 was a difficult time for Clawson, as he became the first practicing polygamist to be convicted and serve a sentence after the passage of the Edmunds Act.

She was put in prison for contempt of court. Judge Charles S. Zane sentenced Clawson to the maximum possible penalty—he was punished with 31⁄2 years in prison and a $1500 fine. His appeal was heard and rejected by the Supreme Court of the United States in Clawson v.

United States. Clawson was pardoned in 1887 by President Grover Cleveland mere months before his sentence was to expire. He was asked to serve as second counselor in the First Presidency under church president Lorenzo Snow on October 6, 1901, but Snow died just four days later. In 1904, the town of Kingsville, Emery County, Utah, was renamed Clawson in his honor after he visited the town to organize a ward.

That same year, Clawson married Pearl Udall. In 1921, Clawson became the President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. Clawson died from pneumonia at the age of 86 in Salt Lake City.

He had served in the quorum for a total of 45 years. He was buried at Salt Lake City Cemetery.


For his final words before being sent to prison, Clawson defended his right to practice his religion and challenged the court's ability to enforce a law aimed at destroying a particular establishment of religion in violation of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.


Member Council of 12 Apostles since 1898 (president since 1921), mem. Member and 1st president of Ch. Member General Board of Education.


Married Florence Ann Dinwoodey, August 12, 1882 (divorced).; married second, Lydia Spencer, March 29, 1883. Children: Remus Rudger, Hiram Bradley, Margaret Gay, Daniel Spencer, Vera Mary, Samuel George, Lorenzo Snow, Marion, Lydia.

Hyrum Bradley Clawson

Margaret Gay (Judd) Clawson

Florence Ann Dinwoodey

Lydia Spencer

Samuel George Clawson

Lydia Clawson

Daniel Spencer Clawson

Margaret Gay Clawson

Hiram Bradley Clawson

Lorenzo Snow Clawson

Marion Clawson

Remus Rudger Clawson

Vera Mary Clawson