Aurelia Spencer Rogers, a 44-year-old mother of 12, felt strongly that something should be done about the behavior of the neighborhood boys who ran freely through the town day and night. She felt many of these children were not being taught basic principles and values and therefore would not be prepared in either knowledge or behavior to carry the gospel forward or even to be good parents or citizens.
Sister Rogers discussed her concerns and a plan of action with General Relief Society President Eliza R. Snow. With the approval of President John Taylor and after receiving a calling from her bishop, Sister Rogers began planning for the first meeting of the Primary Association. Since these leaders decided that “singing was necessary,” girls were also invited to “make it sound as well as it should.” Children ages 4 to 14 were invited to participate in the first Primary.
Under the direction of the priesthood, the first Primary was held in the Farmington Rock Chapel on Sunday, August 25, 1878, with 224 children attending. Now, more than 130 years later, this organization for children has approximately one million attending.