J. Reuben Clark proposes that the Twelve review past statements and make a ruling on whether "one drop" of blood disqualifies someone from receiving the priesthood.

Jan 25, 1940
Meeting Minutes / Notes
J. Reuben Clark
Scribed Summary

Meeting Minutes of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve, January 25, 1940, Archives West, J. Willard Marriott Library, University of Utah, George Albert Smith Family Papers 1731–1969, box 78, folder 7, accessed April 1, 2022

J. Reuben Clark
First Presidency, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles


Attention was called to a postscript on a letter from President Roscoe C. Cox of the Hawaiian Mission, calling attention to a recommendation he had received for ordination of two boys to the office of Deacon, the mother of these boys having some Negro blood in her veins.

President Clark explained that this matter has come up at various times in the past, that is the question of what should be done with those people who are faithful in the Church who are supposed to have some Negro blood in their veins.

President Clark said at his request the clerk of the Council had copied from the old records of the Council discussions that have been had in the past on this subject. He said that he was positive that it was impossible with reference to the Brazilians to tell those who have Negro blood and those who have not, and we are baptizing these people into the Church. The question also arises pertaining to the people in South Africa where we are doing missionary work, and in the Southern States, also in the islands of the Pacific. President Clark suggested that this matter be referred to the Twelve who might appoint a sub-committee to go into the matter with great care and make some ruling or re-affirm whatever ruling has been made on this question in the past as to whether or not one drop of negro blood deprives a man of the right to receive the priesthood.

Brother Widtsoe moved the adoption of President Clark's suggestion.

Notion seconded and unanimously approved.

BHR Staff Commentary

A complete scan of the "old records" of previous council discussions follow in the minutes and are included in the image in this record.

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