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PHELPS, William Wines, Mormon elder, born in Hanover, Morris County, New Jersey, 17 February, 1792; died in Salt Lake City, Utah, 7 March, 1872. He was self-educated, but acquired a large amount of miscellaneous information, and became a good oriental scholar. He edited the "Ontario Phenix" in Canandaigua, New York, in 1820, and, removing to Missouri, established the first morning paper at Independence, Missouri, in 1832. He adopted the Mormon religion, emigrated to Utah, and became an active member of that sect. He was in the Utah legislature in 1850-'7, speaker of the house for several terms, and a justice of the peace. He became "Astronomer, astrologist, and almanac-maker" for his sect, and was the author of the forty signs of the "Deseret Alphabet." He also wrote some of the most popular hymns in the Mormon hymn-book.
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