David Hoagland Cannon


David Hoagland Cannon

Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, USA
Death 17 Oct 1892 (aged 21)
Burial Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, USA
Plot B_11_17NROD_1E
Memorial ID 47704392 View Source
Suggest Edits

Son of George Quayle Cannon and Elizabeth Hoagland

Elder David Hoagland Cannon died in Sorau, Silesia, Germany due to heart failure while serving in the mission field for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. An ordained Seventy, he was called as a proselyting missionary at the age of 20 to the Swiss and German mission. According to the inscription, his companion, Elder Hugh J. Cannon, brought his remains home. David had never married.

Cablegram of David Hoagland Cannon

A cablegram received this morning from President Schaerrer of the Swiss and German mission briefly conveys the terrible intelligence that Elder David Hoagland Cannon died this morning at 9 o'clock. The message gives no particulars, but as it mentions the news as having been received from Elder Hugh J. Cannon, it would indicate that the two brothers were together when the sorrowful event occurred. They have both been laboring as missionaries in the North German Conference, though only rarely being in each other's company. David was in an untrodden missionary field eastward from Berlin, while Hugh was assigned to duty In that city and more westerly points, Hamburg, Kiel, etc. A reply was at once sent to President Schaerrer, asking that if possible the body be sent home and that Hugh be permitted to accompany it.

The deceased was the son of President George Q. Cannon; his mother was the late Elizabeth Hoagland Cannon, whose death in January, 1882, occurred in this city while her husband was absent in Washington battling for the right of his people, and her two eldest sons were abroad on foreign missions. David was her third son living, and he was then but a child. He grew up to be a young man of superior gifts and extraordinary promise. His age was 21 years, his birthday being the 14th of April, 1871. A little over five months ago—in the latter part of April—beset out upon the mission to which he had been called, and immediately began his labors in the northern part of the German Empire. From the very outset he evinced uncommon zeal; and as a result of a persistent striving for the spirit that aforetime characterized the labors of the Elders. He resolved to travel without purse and scrip. Writing home, he declared that he felt be would be under condemnation if he did not thus place his trust In God; he doubted not the power of his Heavenly Father to supply his needs. After much prayer, and in spite of the discouraging advice given him by some of his associates, he resolutely entered upon this line of action,— this, too, before he had mastered or even had sufficient time to partially master the language. He gave to the poor all his clothes save those in which he stood, and to the same purpose devoted all his pocket money. Even with this he was not content. He wrote home requesting his father to cause that the money coming to him here be given in the same way and that the family, Instead of sending means to him, expend it in the manner suggested.

This much of explanation is necessary to an understanding of the last letter received from him, which we are permitted to publish. It was to his father, and was written, as will be seen, eighteen days before his death:

SEIFERSDOKF, September 29, 1892. My Dear Father and Brothers and Sisters:

I will address this letter to father but my feelings and desires you can all know and this perhaps you will accept as an answer to your letters.

I cannot describe my feelings. I have had so much joy in my labors. Last week the Lord has opened the hearts of five persons, and they have come to to me and asked to be baptized, and the prospects are, if it is the will of the Lord, that at least that many more will be added to the branch in a short time. When angels could feel happier than I have felt at times, their joy must be very, very great, for it has seemed to me, once or twice, that I could scarcely remain on the earth. My heart is filled with love and gratitude to my Heavenly Father, and words cannot express to Him my thanksgiving; but He can read my heart and thoughts, and has shown me that I am in His hands.

My food comes to me day after day without asking. I have never yet asked for food, and a place to sleep in is always given to me. Because I have done so much-traveling my shoes are worn so that I have walked the last week with a little corner of the bottom of my feet on the ground. But that mattered not; I could walk just as well, and had no money to buy another pair. I asked the Lord in His own due time to give me he another pair, and yesterday I was led into a shoe shop and measured for a pair of shoes, and I go today to get them, the person who took me there being responsible for the pay.

I could relate many instances where I have had direct answer to my prayers, and will mention one last week. I found myself about dark, walking in the woods with my hat off, praising the Lord and thinking over His wonderful ways, and 1 felt that the very trees and grass could understand my feelings—they were all created by Him as was I. But darkness soon overtook me, and I had no place to eat or sleep, nor, more immment than all, to speak. I kneeled down and asked the Lord to open the way and give me what was necessary, and then proceeded on my way. Scarcely was I out of the woods when I met some women coming from the fields. I had met two before, and they were anxious to know my success. I was invited in the house to wait until the men came from work, as they had heard of me and wanted to know what I had to say. After eating supper, during which I was talking and explaining our doctrines, they invited the people to come together, and I spoke to about ten or twelve for some time. One man stood up and said he believed in nothing beyond this life and laughed and sneered at my words; but I told him his laughing and sneering words would stand against him and condemn him if he did not repent and seek forgiveness from the Lord, for all that occurred in our meeting, our speaking and thoughts, would be remembered when we stood before the judgment bar of God. I told him I trembled for him to hear him say that the Lord, if there was such a Being, was unjust," for the time would come when all would acknowledge that His judgments were Just, but to the wicked it would be to their eternal damnation. I told him the Lord had given him, as He had to me, a soul which we could not destroy; that He had given us the opportunity here on the earth to choose eternal life or eternal damnation, and that when we threw away the opportunity here, it was gone never to return, but that it was our own thoughts, words and actions that would condemn us. I told him that people wished to live now, and feared death, but the time would come that the wicked would seek to destroy their souls, bat could not do it; that the death of the righteous was as a sleep, and is something they do not dread, for by it they are freed from Satan; but the life and death of the wicked and unbelievers are bitter. for they do not understand the object the Lord had when He placed them I on the earth—they are in darkness and imagine all others are like them; that when they die the servant of darkness they cannot expect to live through eternity with those whose souls are enlightened here on the earth with the spirit of the Lord. I said much more to him which it is not necessary to write, and it had a very good effect upon the listeners, and before I retired (for the people insisted on my remaining over night) the man of the house told me that he believed my word*, and I had spoken the truth. He asked me what he should do. I answered him from the Bible, and again gave him my testimony that (the Gospel) was on the earth again, and that a very short time would show that the Lord would punish all who would fight against His work, for great and terrible plagues would sweep over the earth.

I retired to bed, praising the Lord. The next morning my first thought on awaking was to thank the Lord for sweet sleep and health and strength. I turned over in bed and found !>> my bedside a glass of milk and sweet bread and butter. I could not restrain my tear?. What could be nicer than this? Arising, I kneeled down and thanked Him who reigns on High, and who can put into the hearts of even my enemies to give me what I need. During my meal the Frau came in, with tears in her eyes thanked me for coming.and bade me good bye as if he went to her necessary work.

I then visited a house where I had been before, and I learned to my joy that Brother Bahr and Hugh [the writer's brother] bad been there to seek me, and had returned to another village seven miles distant to await me there. I fairly flew over the ground to where I again met my dear brother, and our meeting was truly joyful.

But there was not time to sit long, for I had made an appointment in another place the same evening, so we started out together—four of us—for with us went a young man whom I have since baptized, and of whom I spoke in my other letter. On the way we left Brother Bahr with a family who have been very kind to us, as he had promised to return to Berlin the next day. We three proceeded on our way, and spent the evening explaining to a few people who came together what the Lord has said He would do in the last days. We arose the next morning and went from house to house, one taking one house and another another, until our companion Mr. Waltaw returned to his home, and Hugh and I proceeded further.

I need not say that we were very kindly treated, and had always food and a bed, and that Hugh was overjoyed at what he had seen and heard. It is wonderful that we could and did the whole time talk in German, while I have been here only four and a half months. We passed remark* about it several times, and when we would speak English we would coon again drift into German, as we could better express our thoughts.

Hugh helped me in the baptism and confirming of the five, and this morning we bade each other good-bye, he to return to Berlin and Hamburg. We remained with a very good family last night and this morning after bidding them goodbye, the man ran after us to learn if Hugh had money to buy his ticket, as he understood we traveled without money, and would willingly give it to us. What can I say? Should we doubt the Lord after His wonderful preserving care? I cannot. I doubt my ability to keep His commandments and to do what He requires of me, but on Him and His work here on the earth I have no doubt. He is very, very merciful to me. Many times I feel under condemnation, yet will He show great mercy to me. He gives me His Spirit, friends, food, and places to sleep, and oh, how very little I do for
Him! His mercy and goodness are great —beyond my comprehension or power of description, and I can only thank Him in a very weak way.

Now I hear that the pastors are seeking me. In one with whom I have spoken (or at least he will become a pastor) I found a very different spirit to what a servant of the Lord should have. He was very angry with me and would not allow me to come in his house. I hear today that one of the chief pastors visited the Young Men's Union last Sunday, hoping to find me there, and had asked where I lived. I go there next Sunday evening, if the Lord wishes it, and I will speak with him before his flock; if he can show me wherein 1 am wrong from the Bible, I will repent and do bettor, and I hope it will be same with him. I know, of course, what it means, and that is, persecution: but in this way the people will hear the warning in a way they will remember it, and whatever happens to me when I do my duty will be what the Lord wishes. You speak of the sickness here, father, but I do not fear it in the least. The Lord can do with me as He wishes, and if it is to leave this earth, I have no desire to remain here.

Concerning this young man, father, he is full of faith —brave, and has a burning desire to warn this people from these approaching judgments. The Lord had already revealed to him concerning these plagues before I met him, and he had spoken with a number of families about them. He has had to doctor himself for for years, and has gone through very much trouble, and has only regained his health through the strictest attention to the commandments written in the Bible, and has also found comfort only in talking with others about these things. Should he not hold the Priesthood, and that, too, in view of the great work to be done here, very shortly?

I trust you are all enjoying good health. Concerning the money, father, that is due me, I trust it is used promptly, that nothing will remain to my credit. It appears that Brother Schaerrer, the president here, has paid $25 from what I had in Berne to the Temple, and if Abram has done the same there, §50 has been paid in. Of course, it makes no difference, only that 1 intended it to be paid from there, and therefore am overdrawn in Berne, as I have given out here our works, and have said I would be responsible for them. Can Abram pay $25, or $30 would be better, to Henry Reiser, in Salt Lake, to be placed to my credit here, to replace this $25 overdrawn, and something over, to stand for books people do not pay me for?

I would also like to ask, is it not right to speak a great deal about the Book of Mormon with people who believe the Bible, and endeavor to get these people to read it? People are anxious after reading our smaller books to read this, but some are against my giving it. I cannot agree with them in this. With much love to all, I am your affectionate son, DAVID.

After the foregoing was In type, the following cablegram was received:

LIVERPOOL, Oct. 17, 1892.

President George Q. Cannon, Salt Lake City:

Brother Sohaerrer telegraphs David Cannon died this morning. No particular*. Have ordered the body embalmed. My deepest sympathy. Brigham Young.

At 4 o'clock this afternoon no additional news had been received as to the cause of death.


While in the faithful and valiant performance of duty as a messenger of salvation, he fell asleep in the arms of his brother Hugh (who brought his remains home). His last words being "Yes, now you can rest!"


In their memory
Plant Memorial Trees