A towering figure in Mormonism, Brigham Young (1801-1877), began his professional career as a carpenter and painter. Baptized a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1832, he was ordained an apostle in 1835. After the assassination of Joseph Smith in 1844, Young was chosen leader of the Mormons and continued as president until his death. He directed the migration of 16,000 Mormons from Illinois to Utah from 1856 to 1852, and became governor of the territory in 1851. In addition to bolstering his community through education and the arts, Young contracted for the national expansion of telegraph and railroad lines.