10 Amazing Mormons in World History

5. Sarah Young

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Photo of Sarah Young retrieved from ksl.com, from the Utah State Historical Society.

In 1870, Saray Young, grand-niece of Brigham Young, was credited as being the first woman voter in any territory of the United States. This act was significant not only because Utah granted women’s suffrage years before the rest of the country, but because it illustrated to the world how women were viewed in the Church. Several other prominent LDS women were very active in teaching and participating in public political affairs, including Emily Richards, Sarah Kimball, and Pheobe Beatie.

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6. Philo T. Farnsworth

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Photo from commons.wikimedia.org.

Philo T. Farnsworth came from classic Mormon pioneer stock, with a grandfather who had followed President Brigham Young to Utah. Farnsworth was born in 1906 in Beaver, Utah, where his ancestors had settled, but he grew up on a ranch in Rigby, Idaho.

When in high school, Farnsworth heard about early versions of the mechanical television, like those being developed by John Logie Baird in Scotland. He quickly realized that the image in these devices would never be very clear and felt he could design his own improved version. In 1927, at age 21, he transmitted the first image on his electronic television from his lab in San Francisco.

As the invention caught hold in the world, Farnsworth became very disappointed that the device was not being used for the educational purposes he had envisioned. In fact, his son Kent recalls his father saying about television: “There’s nothing on it worthwhile, and we’re not going to watch it in this household, and I don’t want it in your intellectual diet.” 

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