^ r r tr* T,
UTAH HISTORICAL QUARTERLY (ISSN 0042-143X) EDITORIAL STAFF MELVIN T. SMITH. Editor
STANFORD J. LAYTON, Managing Editor
MIRIAM B. MURPHY,Associate Editor
ADVISORY BOARD OF EDITORS KENNETH L. CANNON II, Salt Lake City, 1983 INEZ S. COOPER, Cedar City, 1984 S. GEORGE ELLSWORTH, Logan, 1984
PETER L. GOSS, Salt Lake City, 1985 GLEN M. LEONARD,Farmington, 1985
LAMAR PETERSEN, Salt Lake City, 1983 RICHARD W. SADLER. Ogden, 1985
HAROLD SenINDLER.SW// Lake City, 1984 GENE A. SESSIONS,Bountiful, 1983
Utah Historical Quarterly was established in 1928 to publish articles, documents, and reviews contributing to knowledge of Utah's history. T h e Quarterly is published by the Utah State Historical Society, 300 Rio Grande, Salt Lake City, Utah 84101. Phone (801) 533-6024 for membership and publications information. Members of the Society receive the Quarterly, Beehive History, and the bimonthly Newsletter upon payment of the annual dues: individual, $10.00; institutions, $ 15.00; student and senior citizen (age sixty-Five or over), $7.50; contributing, $15.00; sustaining, â€¢.00; patron, $50.00; business, $100.00. Materials for publication should be submitted in duplicate accompanied by return postage and should be typed double-space with footnotes at the end. Additional information on requirements is available from the managing editor. T h e Society assumes no responsibility for statements of fact or opinion by contributors. Second class postage is paid at Salt Lake City, Utah. Postmaster: Send form 3579 (change of address) to Utah Historical Quarterly, 300 Rio Grande, Salt Lake City, Utah 84101.
Contents SUMMER 1983/VOLUME 51/NUMBER 3
IN T H I S ISSUE
HISTORIC HOUSES IN BEAVER: AN INTRODUCTION T O MATERIALS, STYLES, AND CRAFTSMEN
MINERSVILLE: T H E BEGINNINGS OF LEAD-SILVER MINING IN UTAH KEITH A. KELLY and J.
L E E A . BUTLER
WARM WINTERS AND WHITE RABBITS: FOLKLORE OF T H E WELSH AND ENGLISH COAL MINERS T H E BENJAMIN PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH, 1886-1916 T H E M-FACTORS IN TOOELE'S HISTORY
J A Y M . HAYMOND
IN MEMORIAM: ANDREW KARL LARSON, 1899-1983 BOOK REVIEWS
THE COVER In 1914 the Elephant Store in Kanab was remodeled as a hotel. William S. Rust and his wif. were the third proprietors. G. L. Beam photograph, USHS collections, J. L. Ozment, donor.
Â© Copyright 1983 Utah State Historical Society
BRIGHAM D . MADSEN, e d . A
in Utah with the Stansbury Exploration of Great Salt Lake: Letters and Journal of John Hudson, 1848-50 . . DAVID H . MILLER
A. SESSIONS. Mormon Thunder: A Documentary History of Jedediah Morgan Grant S. GEORGE
THOMAS J . SCHLERETH, e d .
Culture Studies in America HOWARD W . MARSHALL
E. AHLBORN. Buckaroos in Paradise: Cowboy Life in Northern Nevada . . . . LOUIE W . RICHARD
Books reviewed F. MAXWELL. A Passion for Freedom: The Life of Sharlot Hall ROBERT A .
DAVID A . KYVIG a n d
ADKINS, J R .
WILLIAM C. STRINGHAM
MYRON A. MARTY.
Nearby History: Exploring the Past around You . . . MARLOWE C. LEVI
of Grace ROBERT BREWSTER STANTON.
River Controversies FRED ERISMAN a n d
RICHARD W .
ETULAIN, e d s . Fifty Western Writers: A Bio-Bibliographical Sourcebook LEVI S.
In this issue With 77 percent of Utah's population concentrated on 4 percent of the state's land along the highly urbanized Wasatch Front, it would be easy to dismiss the rest of the state as a relatively homogeneous backwater. But the small towns and back roads on 96 percent of the land have provided diverse settings for human action. By studying these smaller scenes of Utah life we begin to appreciate how that diversity enriches us. From dugouts and cabins to brick and stone houses and Queen Anne cottages, the homes of Beaver, treated in the opening article, illustrate the growth of a town where exceptional folk builders produced dwellings of such craftsmanship that many are listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Minersville, a back-road town near Beaver, was the site of one of the earliest precious metal mining efforts in Utah, an obscure story that demonstrates the need to reexamine generally accepted notions â€” in this case that Mormon leaders discouraged precious metal mining and that such mining began when troops at Fort Douglas staked claims in the 1860s. An equally fascinating aspect of the Utah mining experience is the folklore associated with it. T h e third article examines the lore transplanted by English and Welsh immigrants to the Carbon County coal fields. Another back road leads to the small town of Benjamin where a group of disaffected Mormons marshalled their resources to form a Presbyterian congregation that built a church and provided schooling for children, an unusual achievement given the setting. Capping this issue is a historical portrait of Tooele (serenading band above) painted in broad and colorful strokes. T h e author's M-factors â€” mountains, Mormons, mining, military, and migrants â€” combined to make the area west of the Oquirrhs unique in its cultural and economic mix and as different from Benjamin and the mining towns of Carbon County as Salt Lake City is from Provo and Ogden.
V 1 Irfl
Home of James Boyter in Beaver, Utah, is an outstanding example of folk architecture. See fig. 8 for an alternate view of the house. All illustrations were supplied by author.
Historic Houses in Beaver: An Introduction to Materials, Styles, and Craftsmen BY LINDA L. BONAR
sits in a high, broad valley surrounded by mountains, some of which tower above 12,000 feet. T h e valley's cold climate and 6,000-foot elevation were avoided by early settlers in southern Utah who searched further south for X H E TOWN OF BEAVER IN SOUTHWESTERN U T A H
Ms. Bonar is director of the Snowbird Institute for the Arts and Humanities.
Historic Houses in Beaver
farmland with a longer growing season. But as soon as land in the warmer valleys was taken up, newcomers were forced to take a second look at Beaver. Thus, the area was settled in 1856 by those who were necessarily stock raisers first and farmers second. Beaver represents a fairly typical example of the Mormon settlement pattern in the Intermountain West. A group of men ventured out from Parowan â€” a town some thirty-five miles southward â€” at the suggestion of church leaders to colonize the Beaver River Valley. Both the town and the nearby river derived their names from the profusion of beaver that once populated the vicinity.1 These first pioneers surveyed the land, divided it into ten-acre plots, and cast lots to determine ownership of the property. 2 That same spring, when the area had attracted more settlers, they platted a townsite and gave families one-acre lots upon which to build their homes. In keeping with the "City of Zion" plat, a gridiron plan was emblazoned upon the landscape with broad streets in line with the cardinal points of the compass. T h e residents lived in the village and commuted to outlying fields and grazing areas to work, thus reinforcing the strong social fabric typical of Mormon towns. Also true to the controlled Mormon settlement pattern, church leaders included in the Beaver pioneer group people with previous e x p e r i e n c e in f o u n d i n g new towns a n d craftsmen such as blacksmiths, carpenters, masons, etc., to insure the success of the new village.3 T h e first dwellings in Beaver were modest one-room log cabins or dugouts. These structures were seen as temporary but adequate shelters until the demand for food and clothing could be met and more substantial, permanent dwellings could be built. All Mormon pioneer towns went through this temporary phase. But the settlers saw nothing temporary about their communities, and they constantly sought to improve their material lives. Although few dugouts are extant in Beaver, perhaps many resembled the Robinson residence (fig. I). This dugout was built into the side of a small hill with the ridge of its roof running parallel to the face of the slope. Approximately 14 x 17 feet, with a stairway descending into a rectangular living space, the dugout is about 4.5 feet 'Andrew Jenson, "History of Beaver Stake," LDS Church Library Archives, Salt Lake City. AirdG. Merkley, ed., Monuments to Courage: A History of Beaver County, Utah (Beaver: Daughters of Utah Pioneers of Beaver County, 1949), pp. 8-10. 3 Gustive O. Larson, Outline History of Utah and the Mormons, 3d ed. (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Company, 1965), pp. 72-73. 2
Utah Historical Quarterly
Fig. 1. Robinson dugout, one offew such structures that remain. A grill now protects window in gable.
Fig. 2. Jessie Orwin cabin displays saddle notching.
Historic Houses in Beaver
below ground level. Its gabled roof protrudes at its peak about 2 feet above the ground. A small window in one gable end allowed some light into the dugout. T h e roof consists of pinyon or juniper log rafters with a layer of dirt spread thickly on top of them. T h e interior walls were lined with small cobblestones, and at one time a stove for heating and cooking probably sat at one end. 4 While several pioneer accounts told of how snug and warm a dugout could be, John F. Tolton remembered one of the disadvantages: In the month of August, 1868, shortly after we moved into our first home in Beaver, "the cellar" [actually a dugout], there occurred a great cloudburst which submerged the streets in all parts of town knee deep with water. In our cellar home we had all our earthly possessions, our beds, books, boxes containing valuable papers, our newly threshed grain for our foodstuff for the following year . . . our grain and foodstuff were all water-logged and ruined, and all other contents of our home badly damaged.
Besides dugouts, log cabins were also very popular as temporary dwellings. Although the Jessie Orwin cabin does not date from Beaver's founding, it is a good example of log cabins in town because of its relatively unaltered state (fig. 2). Its rectangular plan is approximately 18 x 24 feet, with a fireplace at one gable end. T h e entire cabin rests upon a black basalt foundation. T h e logs are saddle notched, and the facade displays bilateral symmetry, a clue to its later construction (probably during the late 1870s).6 At one time scores of log structures dotted the Beaver landscape, but scarcely a dozen survive today in their original form. It is, therefore, difficult to make any representative statements regarding log cabin construction in Beaver. However, the remaining log cabins reveal that square and saddle notches were frequently used, these two types being the easiest to construct because they demanded relatively little craftsmanship. Examples of the more difficult halfdovetail notch are few, and the full dovetail and V-notches found in other Utah communities are nonexistent in Beaver. How long residents continued to live in log cabins or dugouts varied from town to town, but in Beaver it was apparently too long for the LDS church leaders in Salt Lake. In 1862, on one of his annual tours of the southern Utah communities, Brigham Young 4 Linda L. Bonar, Structure/Site Form # 8 5 , Beaver Multiple Resource District (BMRD), Preservation Office, Utah State Historical Society, Salt Lake City. 5 John Franklin Tolton, "From the Halls of Memory," p. 2, MS A1368, Utah State Historical Society Library. "Structure/Site Form # 9 5 , BMRD.
Utah Historical Quarterly
"rebuked the local people [of Beaver] for their failure to build up the kingdom." 7 As recorded by J. V. Long: He showed the lack of local improvements of every kind, and stated that instead of visible improvements calculated to attract his attention on leaving, everything had remained in statu[s] quo since his last visit. . . . We left the folks at Beaver feeling well, most of them showing signs of contrition and evincing a determination to improve the habitation of both man and beast by the time of the President's next annual visit.8
Actually, things for man and beast improved very little. T h e following year, a member of Brigham Young's party complained to the Deseret News that . . . we were unable to discover all those marks of enterprise and improvement so eagerly looked for by the Presidency on their entrance into the various settlements. T h e houses are built chiefly of logs, with a few adobies, and I saw two shingle roofs and one frame stable. T h e meeting house is built of logs also. There has been a great neglect on the part of the people of Beaver. 9
A year later, in 1864, the church leaders decided to import new leadership. Owing to factional differences, lack of unity, and the inability of the local authorities to carry on the Church work, the General Authorities decided to graft new blood into the community in the way of new leadership. John Riggs Murdock of Lehi was to become the new leader. 10
Under Murdock's hand things began to improve in Beaver. In May 1868 George A. Smith reported: ". . . much improvement is going on at this place; several new burnt-brick houses are going up. T h e walls of a large and commodious brick school-house are being enclosed and a number of good frame barns ornament the town."11 T h e town also boasted a new tannery, a stream sawmill, the Beaver Co-op Store, and a branch office of the Deseret T e l e g r a p h Company. Not only was the town beginning to prosper, it was growing too. By 1868 about a thousand people lived in Beaver, and it appeared that the tentative settlement had finally taken root as a permanent community. 12 'Gordon Irving, "Encouraging the Saints: Brigham Young's Annual Tours of the Mormon Settlements," Utah Historical Quarterly 45 (1977):235. 8 "Manuscript History of the Church, Brigham Young Period, 1862," pp. 807-9, LDS Church Library Archives. 9 Lyman O. Littlefield to Deseret News, 12:368 (May 1863). '"Merkley, Monuments to Courage, p. 115. ""Journal History of the Church," May 20, 1868, LDS Church Library Archives. 12 Ibid., April 4, 1868.
Historic Houses in Beaver
Fig. 3. Robert Kershaw house of plastered adobe brick has sandstone window sills.
One of the first permanent buildings to be seen on the Beaver landscape was the adobe brick home of Robert Kershaw, ca. 1864 (fig. 3). Adobe brick was a very popular nineteenth-century building material. It was widely used in Beaver and throughout most of Utah. Adobe had good insulating qualities, could be used to construct sturdy and aesthetically pleasing structures, and could be utilized by unskilled laborers. Robert Kershaw, a farmer by occupation, probably built his own house. He would have mixed the adobe, pressed it into brick molds, and laid the dried bricks up in courses that were two or three bricks thick. T h e house originally had a rectangular cabin plan and was probably quite plain in appearance. It has a shallow pitch to the roof and a simple cornice along the eaves, two allusions to the Greek Revival style. For a decorative effect Kershaw used red sandstone for the window sills, and after the house was completed he plastered the adobe bricks with a lime stucco to protect them from the weather. 13 Thus by 1868, some twelve years after the town had been founded, Beaver citizens were well on the way to making the transition from temporary to permanent houses. 13
Structure/Site Form #4, BMRD.
Utah Historical Quarterly
As the settlers began to think in terms of permanent dwellings they found various construction options open to them. If a family needed more space but was of modest means, extra rooms could be added to an existing cabin. Dugouts were seldom enlarged but served later as tool sheds, basements, root cellars, or some other type of utility building. Usually, a new addition was built with a more refined building material such as burnt brick, and the original cabin was often sheathed in the same building material to match the addition. Consequently, it is not uncommon even today to find original adobe walls veneered with brick or a log wall covered with milled wood siding. In some instances, so many additions to an original cabin were made over the years that the cabin may be just one more room in the house, surrounded by later construction. 14 Another alternative for a family considering a permanent home was to abandon the original cabin or dugout as living quarters and build a completely new home. Such a family may have accumulated enough wealth to afford a professional builder instead of having to rely on their own skills as they did during the "temporary" building phase. Builders were more likely to be sought if the cabin was being replaced by a house of either stone or brick. Brickmaking in Beaver can be divided into two phases. T h e first period, from ca. 1865 to ca. 1875, occurred when church officials put pressure on Beaver citizens to "build up the kingdom" and make the transition to more permanent dwellings. A search for suitable brick clay revealed that there was little in the town's environs. Members of the Patterson family, who had acquired some experience in brickmaking in their native England, finally located some clay at South Creek, about four miles south of town. Like nearly all early residents of Beaver, the Pattersons were primarily farmers, and they confined brickmaking to spare hours when the chores in the fields were finished.15 They made and burned the brick at South Creek, though their output was understandably limited. It was probably from the Pattersons' bricks that a group of about eight stylistically similar houses were built. Many have been drastically altered over the years. These vernacular buildings were very much influenced by the Greek Revival style, and their characteristics included end-wall chimneys, one-story height with a shallow roof pitch, Greek Revival 14 Examples of homes with log cabins incorporated into later structures are the Duckworth Grimshaw house, 95 North 400 West; the Andrew James Morris house, 110 North 400 East; and the William Barton house, 295 North 300 East. ^Interview with Mrs. Merlin Patterson, Beaver, 1979.
Historic Houses in Beaver
cornices with paired wooden brackets, two to four windows located symmetrically on the front facade, common-bond brickwork, and usually a hall-and-parlor plan (though a few have rectangular cabin plans). One example of these early brick dwellings is the Horace Skinner house, ca. 1865 (fig. 4). By about 1875 brickmaking fell into a ten-year decline in Beaver for several reasons. T h e brick itself was quite soft because highquality clay was nonexistent in or near town. Another factor would have been the cost of hauling the fired brick four miles from the kiln to Beaver. An additional reason must have been the arrival in Beaver of the stonemason Thomas Frazer who, judging from the great number of rock structures he built, provided an economically competitive alternative to the early brick industry. Coincidental with Frazer's arrival in Beaver, the townspeole entered three decades of prosperity that in many ways influenced the appearance of the built environment. Beaver's high elevation and arid climate made the land more conducive to stock raising than extensive farming, and LDS church leaders were persuaded that Beaver would be a good place to locate a woolen mill. Thomas Frazer
Fig. 4. Horace Skinner house was built ca. 1865.
Utah Historical Quarterly
Fig. 5. Pencil portrait of Thomas Frazer drawn ca. 1881 when he was sixty years old.
helped to construct this large factory, which was an instant success both in terms of employment and profit. "Although it has been running a little over half a year, a dividend of 27 percent was recently declared. T h e mill is quite a benefit to the people as money has heretofore been somewhat scarce . . . ," one account stated. 16 Another author wrote, "This institution was responsible for the substantial growth of Beaver more than any other factor. Most of the prominent buildings erected in Beaver during the 1870s and 80s owe their existence to employment at this factory." 17 Indeed, a glance at nineteenth-century deeds and abstracts shows that most of the substantial rock and brick homes were built during this period. 18 Also contributing to the economic prosperity in Beaver during this thirty-year period was the construction of and later the supplying of goods to Fort Cameron. Work on the fort began in 1873, and soon contracts were offered to all local men in the construction business. Some twenty large buildings were erected to accommodate officers, their families, and approximately 250 enlisted men. Some staples were shipped to the fort from the States, but the army also 16 Dale L. Morgan, "Historical Sketch of Beaver County," p. 17, WPA Collection, B57-48, Utah State Historical Society Library. 17 Merkley, Monuments to Courage, p. 105. 18 As documented by tax records and abstracts in the Beaver County Courthouse.
Historic Houses in Beaver
came to depend on Beaver residents for a wide variety of goods, from which the townspeople profited tremendously. By the 1870s Beaver had also become a crossroads for travelers. T h e town was the diverging point for Pioche, a booming mining town in eastern Nevada. Residents of Beaver supplied the mining town of Frisco (located in western Beaver County) with everything from culinary water to lumber. Beaver also lay on the route south to St. George, the thriving Mormon community where a new Mormon temple was being constructed. With so much activity and prosperity in Beaver from 1870 to 1900 it is not at all surprising that townspeople could at last afford the skills of someone like Thomas Frazer, a professional builder and contractor and the first person in Beaver who was able to depend on the construction industry for his livelihood. By about 1870 he was beginning to build houses in Beaver that utilized the black basalt found to the east on the benches or foothills above the town. A native of Scotland, Frazer (fig. 5) had worked as a stonemason before converting to the LDS religion and immigrating to Utah with his wife Annie.11' They lived in Lehi for seven years before church authorities requested them to relocate in Beaver. This Thomas happily did, for it gave him the opportunity to play a large part in Beaver's construction industry. He and his family arrived in town in 1868, and for two years he was kept very busy with the construction of industrial and commercial buildings such as the Beaver Woolen Mills and the Beaver Co-op Store, neither of which are extant. During the 1870s and 1880s Frazer built scores of stone buildings, including many residences like the 1877 Duckworth Grimshaw house (fig. 6). This home is one and a half stories tall with a hall-and-parlor plan, end-wall chimneys, dormer windows, a center gable with a door in it, and perfect symmetry on the front facade. T h e vernacular design owes much of its inspiration to the Gothic Revival's characteristic dormer windows, center gable, and steeply pitched roof. Grimshaw, a polygamist, shared this house with only one of his wives, for in Beaver polygamists' wives appear to have had their own separate homes. 20 In his journal he noted that the house was "36 feet 19
For more biographical material on Frazer see Linda L. Bonar, ed., "The Thomas Frazer Journals," Special Collections, Marriott Library, University of Utah, Salt Lake City. Elsie Hales, Annabell Hales, and Ruby McMullin, granddaughters of Frazer, provided many biographical details. 20 This is true for all the polygamists of Beaver that the author has identified to date: J. R. Murdock, D. Grimshaw, J. Fotheringham, C. D. White, M. L. Shepherd, D. Levi, and D. Powell.
Utah Historical Quarterly
Fig. 6. Duckworth Grimshaw house, 1877, was built by Thomas Frazer of black basalt.
Fig. 7. Alexander "Scotty" Boyter built his own home of pink volcanic tuff. The front porch is not original.
Historic Houses in Beaver
long by 20 feet wide, costing $2,000. We moved in on Christmas Day."21 T h e Grimshaw house represents a summit of achievement in the folk architecture of Beaver. Its design is one that Frazer had been working to perfect for nearly a decade; and once he attained it, the design was repeated with minor variations all over town by Frazer and others in the accepted manner of folk designers. 22 Looking at figure 6, one finds that the proportions of the dormers and center gable work well with the rest of the house to help create one balanced unit. T h e slopes of the dormer roofs and center gable repeat the pitch of the main roof, adding further unity. T h e white mortar joints and the white paint on the cornice and porch form a pleasing contrast to the black rock. T h e squared and plumb lines of the house give it a very precise appearance, so much so that the subtraction or addition of any element would seem to throw the facade out of balance. All the architectural elements work in unison to create a sophisticated, harmonious design. At least eight other extant houses built after 1877 in Beaver conform closely to the characteristics of the Duckworth Grimshaw house. This replication of a proven design was perfectly acceptable within the conservative folk culture of Beaver. 23 Such folk societies nearly always opted for a tried-and-true design rather than one that displayed change simply for novelty's sake.24 By 1882 a new type of stone had been introduced in Beaver, a pink tuff from the quarry recently opened near the mouth of Beaver River Canyon. Because this stone was so much softer and easier to work than basalt, it soon replaced the black rock almost entirely, except in foundations. Alexander "Scotty" Boyter was a stonemason who excelled in its use. Like Thomas Frazer, Boyter was a Scots immigrant to Utah. However, he was not a convert to the LDS church but arrived in Beaver in 1873 with the U.S. Army to establish Fort Cameron. 25 He 2 'Duckworth Grimshaw Diary, a copy of which was loaned to the author through the courtesy of Conrad Grimshaw. 22 For examples of this design constructed by other builders see the Edward Fernley house, 215 East 200 North; the Daniel Tyler house, 310 North Main Street; and the James Boyter house, 90 West 200 North. 23 Henry Glassie, "Folk Art," in Folklore and Folklife: An Introduction, ed. Richard M. Dorson (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1973), p. 258. 24 Tom Carter, "Folk Design in Utah Architecture: 1849-90," in Utah Folk Art, ed. Hal Cannon (Provo, Ut.: Brigham Young University Press, 1980), p. 45. "Interviews with Alexander Boyter, Jr., and Retta Boyter, 1976-80. For a more complete biographical sketch and a list of buildings in Beaver attributed to Alexander Boyter see Linda L.
Utah Historical Quarterly
learned his masonry skills while serving in the army, and upon his discharge practiced them on new residences for the townspeople. His own home (fig. 7), built entirely of pink tuff, originally had a hall-and-parlor plan with a rear extension (also known as a T-plan). His descendants like to tell the story that Boyter quarried all the rock for his home three times but sold it twice before construction actually began. T h e stone blocks in the original portion of the house were very finely chiseled, a characteristic of all of Scotty's work. T h e mortar joints were stained a red rust color, creating a pleasant contrast to the pink rock. Originally, Boyter built a bay window on the south gabled end of the house, but he later removed it and incorporated a flat window with stained glass.26 This bay window and the steeply pitched roof represent some of the influence of the Gothic Revival style, while the cornice is indicative of Greek Revival and the strict symmetry in the original portion of the house Georgian. Nearly all vernacular houses in Beaver and much of Utah are composites of various "high" styles of architecture and traditional designs. About the same time that the use of pink tuff became widespread, the brick industry in Beaver was revived. New clay beds were located, and although the bricks were still relatively soft, they were produced in much greater quantities than during the 1860s. Consequently, brick houses became very popular and were built all over town. One such example is the James Boyter house which James, a talented gravestone carver, built himself, probably with the aid of his older brother Scott (fig. 8).27 T h e James Boyter house is one and a half stories tall with a central chimney, three dormer windows, a hall-and -parlor plan with rear extension, and a Greek Revival cornice. Its design was undoubtedly influenced by the earlier work of Thomas Frazer. 28 Not until the 1890s did frame houses become popular in Beaver. In most pioneer Utah communities, the nearby stands of timber had been utilized for log cabins with the founding of the town, and the commercial exploitation of forests in the mountains usually had to await the construction of good roads. But by the 1890s milled lumber was widely available and somewhat less expensive to Bonar, "Thomas Frazer: Vernacular Architect in Pioneer Beaver, Utah" (Master's thesis, University of Utah, 1980), pp. 173-76. 26 Structure/Site Form # 9 1 , BMRD. "Interviews with Chloe Boyter Bishop, 1976-80. 28 Structure/Site Form # 5 4 , BMRD.
Historic Houses in Beaver
m mm m nr i«
Fig. 8. James Boyter house was built by James and Scotty Boyter of brick.
use than masonry. Besides this economic factor, the development of the balloon frame in the Midwest during the 1830s and wire cut nails facilitated the construction of frame buildings. They could now be erected with standardized pieces of lumber and nails instead of the expensive mortise-and-tenon joints. 20 The John Grimshaw house (fig. 9) is an example of a frame house and of the Queen Anne cottage style. T h e introduction of the Queen Anne cottage, ca. 1890, provided the first example of a nationally accepted style coming to Beaver.30 Previously, elements of various architectural styles were adopted piecemeal into folk houses, as noted earlier in connection with the Alexander Boyter house (fig.7). Although the acceptance of such elements added beauty and variety to folk buildings, the traditional methods of design remained unchanged. By 1890, however, traditional floor plans and even a building's massing showed the influence of nontraditional ideas. Floor plans were often designed 29
Karl T. Haglund and Philip F. Notarianni, The Avenues of Salt Lake City (Salt Lake City: Utah State Historical Society, 1980), p. 33. 30 See ibid., p. 57, for a complete definition of the Queen Anne Cottage style.
Utah Historical Quarterly
Fig. 9. John Grimshaw house once had a tower similar to the one in fig. 10. It was removed because of a water leak that could not be repaired. However, the bottom portion of the tower is extant.
asymmetrically, thus successfully attacking that most sacred of traditional design tenets, symmetry of the front facade.31 John Grimshaw, a professional carpenter in Beaver, built his Queen Anne cottage in 1909.32 T h e design came from a housepattern book now in the possession of his son (compare figs. 9 and 10).33 Grimshaw was one of several builders of that time to cast aside the folk design process and embrace the increasingly popular national styles in architecture. He was active in the building industry from about 1885 to 1920, working not only as a carpenter but also as a manufacturer of decorative wood products such as cornice trim. As the nineteenth century came to a close, so did an era of architecture in Beaver and most rural towns in Utah. T h e traditional building methods, materials, and designs passed from generation to generation increasingly gave way to new and often nontraditional ideas. Architecture in Beaver began to be influenced by the nation3 'Bilateral symmetry was incorporated into American architecture as early as 1700 with the acceptance of Georgian architectural influences from England. 32 Interview with Earl Grimshaw, Beaver, 1979. 33 The Grimshaw house design and floor plan were taken from The Radford American Homes (n.p., 1903), plan # 1 3 1 .
Historic Houses in Beaver
than an old stvl. box house
Price of Plans and Specifications $5.00
H o u s e Design No. 131 S e e o p p o s i t e page for floor plan* of this house
We have boiled down everything in this book so that the reader can see at a glance what is necessary. We do not give long descriptions of each house, whfch are valueless to the prospective builder.
Full and complete working plans and specifications of this house will be furnished Ifor $5.00. Cost of this house is from about $1,550.00 to about $1,750.00, according to the locality in which it is built. 141
Fig. 10. John Grimshaw, a carpenter, built his home from this drawing and the accompanying plans in T h e Radford American H o m e s published in 1903. Compare drawing to fig. 9.
Utah Historical Quarterly
wide fashions seen in house-pattern books. O n e phase of folk building in Beaver came to an end, but another phase continues even now, though it is radically different from the one that existed from 1856 to ca. 1900. T h e architectural history of Beaver has many parallels in the n u m e r o u s towns settled by M o r m o n pioneers t h r o u g h o u t the Intermountain West. Most towns were established in a similar manner u n d e r a controlled Mormon settlement pattern. All of these towns experienced a "temporary" construction period before the metamorphosis to p e r m a n e n t structures could be accomplished. T h e replication of successful designs was yet another characteristic found in all of these settlements, though the designs might differ from town to town. With the exception of stone, the types of building materials employed in Beaver — from the ubiquitous adobe to the status of b u r n e d brick — were widely utilized throughout the Intermountain West. When stone was used, it appears to have been favored mostly by European converts to Mormonism familiar with stonemasonry from their Old World backgrounds. A breakdown of the most significant structures in Beaver by building materials shows: log — 9; adobe — 6; brick — 54; black rock — 16; pink rock — 22; frame — >7 34
Nineteenth-century architecture in Beaver was mostly vernacular in design, with frequent references to the popular Georgian, Greek Revival, and Gothic Revival styles. House types and floor plans, such as the hall-and-parlor plan, the rectangular cabin plan, the central-hall plan, etc., were traditionally used not only in Beaver but in most M o r m o n - f o u n d e d towns in the West. T h e many craftsmen and folk architects responsible for the legacy of historic buildings in Beaver designed and built homes that are still admired today. T h e folk tradition of architecture — knowledge passed from generation to generation — guided and inspired them. 34 Linda L. Bonar, "Beaver Multiple Resource District Report," p. 1, Preservation Office, Utah State Historical Society.
Primitive methods and equipment were used to open the mines at Minersville and elsewhere in the West. This unidentified photograph from Brigham Young University archives shows a typical early mining scene.
Minersville: The Beginnings of Lead-Silver Mining in Utah BY KEITH A. KELLY AND J. KENNETH DAVIES
1859 A GROUP OF ENTERPRISING MORMONS began working a mineral deposit near what legend said had been an old Spanish silver mine. Located near the present-day site of Minersville, Utah, this mining operation began as a lead-producing venture. With full approval and encouragement of their leader, Brigham Young, its promoters laid out a townsite, built a lead smelter, and began supIN
Most of the basic research and writing of this article was done by Mr. Kelly as a senior at Brigham Young University and a research assistant under the supervision of Professor Davies of the Department of Managerial Economics. Because of his superior work his name appears first as an author.
Utah Historical Quarterly
plying lead to the territory. Later, the mines in the area would become the first silver mining operations within the current boundaries of the state of Utah and some of the earliest in the West.1 In most histories of Utah precious metal mining, the role of Minersville is obscure. Since the mines began as lead mines and since early writers ignored Minersville in recounting the story of Utah precious metal mining, the area is not given full credit as the first documented, major precious metal mining region in Utah. 2 A reexamination of the Minersville story reveals that the first Mormon miners attempted to develop silver finds in the early 1860s, before significant numbers of Gentile (non-Mormon) prospectors entered the territory. But like the early non-Mormon mine developers who later appeared in the territory, the Mormons in early Minersville were hindered by a lack of technical understanding of how to properly process and profit from their valuable silver ore. T h e Minersville experience was not the first Mormon encounter with mining. Indeed, it was merely an extension of earlier Latter-day Saint mining efforts. Unfortunately, these earlier efforts are often overlooked or played down because of the common view that the Mormon people were counseled and pressured by their leaders to avoid mining. This idea that the Saints had little to do with mining stems partly from the fact that they were primarily an agricultural people who wanted to develop a self-sufficient, spiritually oriented economy in the Great Basin. Since they had to struggle to feed and clothe themselves, it is reasoned that they had little time to mine precious metals. It is supposed that since they wanted self-sufficiency, they did not want a trade dependent, boom-bust, precious metal mining economy. In addition, it is often averred that mining was to be avoided because of a tendency of mining camps to be sin-ridden.
' T h e best known early silver mining activities in the West were those at the Comstock Lode in Virginia City, whose mines were still operating in 1982. They were presaged by gold discoveries and mining down Gold Canyon, a few miles below, as early as 1849 when a Mormon, Thomas Blackburn, made the first discovery. T h e Comstock silver was discovered in 1857, subsequent to the Las Vegas find in 1855. Because of the uncertainty of the date of the discovery of the lead-silver at Minersville (1854, 1857, 1858) the relative precedence of the Comstock and Minersville silver cannot as yet be decided. However, the Comstock certainly outshone Minersville, as its ores were much richer and the silver was more easily smelted. 2 Kate B. Carter, ed., Heart Throbs of the West, 12 vols. (Salt Lake City: Daughters of Utah Pioneers, 1939-51), 2:224; Mormon and Utah folklore credits Thomas Bingham as the first precious metal miner in Utah, supposedly discovering precious ores in Bingham Canyon as early as 1848. He reportedly hid his discovery at the request of Brigham Young. In addition, legend credits Thomas Rhodes, a veteran Mormon California gold miner, with extracting gold from the high Uintas in the 1850s. These stories have not been documented.
These views were reflected in the statements of early church leaders. Typical was the statement of Apostle Erastus Snow: We have all the time prayed that the Lord would shut u p the mines. It is better for us to live in peace and good order, and to raise wheat, corn, potatoes and fruit, than to suffer the evils of a mining life, and do no more than make a living at last.3
At the same time, Brigham Young and others fostered the belief that if the Lord wanted the Mormons to have gold and other precious metals, He would open the way for the Saints to obtain them. In 1849 Young said: When the saints shall have preached the gospel, raised grain, and built up cities enough, the Lord will open up the way for a supply of gold to the perfect satisfaction of his people; until then, let them not be overanxious for the treasures of the earth are in the Lord's storehouse, and he will open the doors thereof when and where he pleases. 4
As a result of these and other statements made by early church leaders, the typical picture painted of faithful Latter-day Saints is one in which precious metal mining should be and actually was avoided. 5 Unfortunately, that picture is inaccurate. Mormons, faithful and unfaithful alike, engaged in precious metal mining as early as 1848 when several members of the Mormon Battalion were involved in the Sutter's Mill gold discovery in Cali fornia. They were followed by one to two h u n d r e d more California Mormons that year. Although Brigham Young wanted the Saints to build a self-sufficient, agriculturally based kingdom, he recognized the need for gold to facilitate trade and the purchase of goods not produced in the Rocky Mountains. T o minimize loss of manpower he publically counseled the Saints to stay at home to farm while privately calling many on gold-mining "missions" to provide needed funds for the kingdom. These gold-mining missionaries, along with those who were given permission to go and the disobedient who left for the California gold fields on their own, represented a substantial number of the Saints. Recent research by J. Kenneth Davies indicated the extent of this mining effort: T h e truth is that there was substantial Mormon involvement in the gold fields, far beyond participation in the initial discoveries at Coloma and 3
Leonard J. Arrington, Great Basin Kingdom: An Economic History of the Latter-day Saints, 18301900 (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1958), p. 242. 4 Brigham H. Roberts, Comprehensive History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 6 vols, (reprint ed.; Provo, Ut.: Brigham Young University Press, 1965), 3:347. 5 Arrington, Great Basin Kingdom, pp. 241-43; Roberts, Comprehensive History, 3:347-53.
Utah Historical Quarterly Mormon Island, and extending far beyond 1848. In fact, the Mormon presence in the gold fields constituted the first substantial church colonization attempt, albeit temporary, outside of the Salt Lake and Weber Valleys. It appears that between nine hundred and a thousand adult Mormons may have been involved in the gold fields between 1848 and 1857, with as many as eighty family units, including women and children. As many as 15 to 25 percent of the overall 1847 adult male pioneer group and 50 percent of several subgroups of Mormon pioneers that year went into the gold fields.6
Their efforts were financially successful. Davies added: In contrast to many other early Mormon economic efforts, this one was highly successful, bringing probably as much as one hundred thousand dollars in gold into the Salt Lake Valley from 1848 to 1851, providing gold backing for the Mormon money-system and the "foreign exchange" needed for economic expansion.
T h e economic impact was important, but perhaps as substantial was the psychological, social, and precedential impact of the experience. T h e gold rush exposed many church leaders and members to a lucrative mining experience. Other Mormons not quite so fortunate could only observe and wonder with envy at the apparent success of some of their colleagues. At the same time, Mormon miners in California were introduced to the emerging conventions of mining: the mining district organization of property rights and the techniques of extracting precious metals. These almost certainly affected later Mormon mining experiences when some of these California miners turned to Utah's hidden mineral wealth. Other mining experiences among the Saints in the 1850s were more mundane, aimed at supplying the Mormon commonwealth with such needed commodities as salt, coal, iron, and lead. Perhaps the most noted of these early mining operations was the iron mission. Organized in 1850 and later established at Cedar City by thirty-five men skilled in mining and manufacturing, the mission produced its first iron on September 29, 1852. T o provide capital to expand the promising operation, Mormon leaders in Britain persuaded several wealthy English converts to subscribe to shares in the Desert Iron Company. Despite this auspicious beginning, Indian troubles, floods, technical difficulties, problems with the furnace, and lack of proper fuel hindered the operation during the next few years. Finally, in 1855 the pioneers executed several reasonably successful runs. But difficulties continued to plague the mission. In 1858, after the operation had been interrupted by a call to mobilize 6 7
J. Kenneth Davies, "Mormons and California Gold,"Journal ofMormon History 7 (1980): 83-100. Ibid., pp. 83-84.
for the coming of federal troops, Brigham Young ordered the enterprise closed down. 8 Although the iron mission was a financial failure, it did show the determination of the Saints in the face of repeated failure. At the same time, its difficulties foreshadowed problems that the leadmining mission near Las Vegas would face. T h e Las Vegas venture began in 1855 as a mission to the Indians led by William Bringhurst. In exploring the surrounding countryside, some of the missionaries found what appeared to be valuable deposits of lead ore. When samples arrived in Salt Lake City, Brigham Young seized the opportunity to begin a lead-producing operation. Nathaniel V. Jones was sent "to search for and examine into the location, quality and quantity of different ores and metals" in the Las Vegas area. 9 He rejected the earlier find as impractical to work but finally located a promising body of ore. Although the new location was twelve miles from running water and without a grazing area for their animals, the men were not deterred. Their favorable report led Young to call sixteen men to begin a mining operation u n d e r Jones's direction, a t u r n of events that disappointed Bringhurst who had made plans of his own in the area. 10 T o assist Jones and his men, Brigham Young enlisted the aid of Isaac Grundy, probably the only Mormon in the West with a technical knowledge of lead smelting. Grundy jointed the Las Vegas contingent and began building a furnace to smelt the newly mined ore. Unfortunately, the local materials used in the furnace were unable to withstand the high temperatures necessary to process the ore. Jones traveled to Salt Lake City to procure proper materials, and by Chrismas Day 1856 smelting operations had begun. 11 T h e miners worked hard to produce lead, but the yield was poor. Grundy was unable to solve the problem of how to separate out the ore's high silver content. Other problems hampered the operation as well, and it was finally abandoned by Jones in January 1857.12 8
Arrington, Great Basin Kingdom, pp. 122-28. Brigham Young to church leaders in S. W. Utah, 1855, LDS Church Library Archives, Salt Lake City. 10 AndrewJenson, comp., "History of the Las Vegas Mission," Nevada State Historical Society Paper 5 (1925-26): 229-30; Wesley R. Law, "Mormon Indian Missions, 1855" (M.S. thesis, Brigham Young University, 1959), pp. 69-70. At least one of the lead missionaries was Bishop Andrew Cahoon of Salt Lake City, who had been a gold miner in California in 1850. "Brigham Young to Isaac Grundy, July 7, 1856, LDS Church Library Archives; Alvaretta Robinson, ed., They Answered the Call: A History of Minersville, Utah (Minersville: Minersville Centennial Committee, 1962), p. A 99. 12 Law, "Mormon Indian Missions," pp. 75-77; Arrington, Great Basin Kingdom, pp. 128-29. 9
Utah Historical Quarterly
With the failure and great capital loss attending the lead and iron missions, Brigham Young was not ready to call anyone to another mining mission. However, he did encourage careful private initiative on the part of several prominent Mormons in developing another find. With his encouragement, the first lead-silver mine within the current boundaries of Utah was opened. In 1857 and 1858 the Mormons' Great Basin kingdom was nearly turned upside down. A federal army was approaching Utah and the Mormons were prepared to resist. Mormons in northern Utah made ready to flee to the south, and outlying settlers and missionaries around the world were called home. Southern Utah became a refuge for Saints returning from California and for those who had abandoned their homes to the north. During this unsettled time Jesse N. Smith, a prominent leader at Parowan, Utah, was instructed on December 18, 1857, to help the Mormons at San Bernardino, California, move back to Utah. With this group was Isaac Grundy, who on March 23, 1858, moved into Jesse Smith's old home in Parowan. 13 Smith and Grundy, along with several o t h e r e n t e r p r i s i n g M o r m o n s , a p p a r e n t l y spent time exploring and prospecting in the area. Sometime during 1858 they located what would become the first lead mine in Utah. Although it is not clear that the mine was first located that year (one writer says it was opened a year earlier and another says it was first worked in 1854),14 Grundy and several of his co-workers presented Brigham with samples of their prospecting when they traveled to Salt Lake for a church conference. On November 12, 1858, the Journal History account noted: "Bishop Tarlton Lewis, Wm. Barton and Isaac Grundy presented Pres. Young with some rich specimens of lead, zinc, copper and grey silver ores, which were obtained 25 miles below Beaver Settlement and four miles from Beaver river and near a good spring of water." 15 (Note that the specimens included silver as well as lead, zinc, and copper.) Brigham Young approved the men's plan to develop their finds, and the next spring found them hard at work building a new settlement to support their mining operation. Jesse N. Smith's journal entry for March 13, 1859, recorded: "Went 13 Ohver R. Smith, ed.,Six Decades in the Early West: The Journal of J esse Nathaniel Smith, 3 d e d . (Salt Lake City: Publishers Press, 1970), p. 28. (Hereinafter cited as Smith Journal.) 14 Aird G. Merkley, ed., Monuments to Courage: A History of Beaver County (Milford, Ut.: Milford News Press, 1948), p. 208; Herbert L. Leichter, Jr., and George M. Adamson, Jr., " T h e History of Smelting in Utah" (B.S. thesis, University of Utah, 1941), p. 2; Bentham Fabian, The Resources of Utah (Salt Lake City: Salt Lake T r i b u n e Printing and Publishing Co., 1873), p. 14. 15 "Journal History of the Church," November 12, 1858, LDS Church Library Archives.
A section of Froiseth's 1878 map of Utah shows Minersville, Beaver, and the Lincoln Mining District organized in 1871 to replace the Pioneer District.
to Lower Beaver Valley in company with Isaac Grundy, T. Lewis, W. Barton and John Blackburn, our object being to find a location for a settlement near a lead mine, lately discovered there." 16 But beginning the new mining operation was not easy; the men experienced opposition from farmers who had begun a settlement six miles downstream from the miners' proposed location. T h e farmers felt threatened by the mining operation and were concerned that it would use up or pollute the water they needed for irrigation. Bishop Philo Farnsworth of Beaver joined the farmers in opposing the surveying of the proposed community. At the end of March the miners' and farmers' conflicting claims were resolved when Apostle Amasa M. Lyman called the two groups together. 17 Jesse Smith recorded the meeting: Mar.26. Upon arriving at the Cottonwoods a notice informed us that A. Lyman, Bishop Farnsworth, and others were seven miles down the river at a place called the "Farm" awaiting to adjudicate the water claims. Mar. 27. (Sun.) Brother Grundy and myself mounted at 2 a.m. and rode down to the "Farm." A. Lyman called all parties together and i6
Smith Journal, p. 35. This was not Apostle Lyman's first experience with precious metal mining. He had supervised Mormon gold mining in northern California in 1849-50 and promoted prospecting for gold in central California the first half of the 1850s. 17
Utah Historical Quarterly advised that the water claims be settled without dispute, and went on his way to Salt Lake City. It was finally agreed that the mining settlement at the Cottonwoods should be entitled to one-eleventh of the water of the creek for irrigating purposes. An article to that effect was written out and signed by Bishop Farnsworth on behalf of the farmers, and by I. Grundy, on behalf of the Mining Company. 18
Two weeks after this incident, Lyman arrived in Salt Lake and reported to Brigham Young that he had "travelled down the Beaver river 19 miles to Grundy's smelting furnace thence 6 miles to the new farming location. . . ." He added that Grundy had "made a location for smelting lead ore on the south bend of Beaver river and 4 miles from a lead mine." Lyman also "informed Prest. Young of difficuly [sic] as misunderstanding between the miners and Farmers at Lower Beaver," explaining that "the men who have commenced farming 6 miles below the smelting location are afraid that the water from the furnace will poison the land." 19 On April 13, the same day Lyman reported to him, Brigham Young wrote to Bishop Farnsworth, expressing his support for the miners and assuring him that the mining operation would not injure farming operations: Bro. Isaac Grundy very properly wishes to engage in developing the mineral resources in your region, for which business he has a taste and many good qualifications. Such a course has the approval of my judgement, and I can but think that his operations, if properly managed, will prove of much local and general benefit. But to accomplish this you must be aware that Bro. Grundy and his co-laborers, and others who wish to be more or less connected with the ramifications into which such business may branch, should have the privilege of selecting the most advantageous location possible; and, as the country is roomy, let those who wish to engage exclusively in farming, grazing, &c. consider their own interests and that of their neighbors, by locating their places in a way that will not infringe upon bro. Grundy and those above named, giving them their choice of location upon unoccupied lands, and not stingily limiting them in quantity. It is an entirely mistaken idea that the washing of the ore will injuriously effect [sic] the water for drinking or culinary purposes, and of course not for irrigation; neither are the smelting operations injurious, except the fumes, and they need not harm any one if the smoke stack is properly constructed. Trusting that this communication will prove satisfactory, and that each one will be disposed to locate the operation with a view to promote the interest of all. Â° i8
Smith Journal, p. 35. "History of Brigham Young,"April 13, 1859, LDS Church Library Archives. 20 Brigham Young to Isaac Grundy, April 13, 1859, LDS Church Library Archives. 19
Jesse N. Smith, a leader at Parowan, participated in the Minersville venture. LDS Biographical Encyclopedia photograph.
Meanwhile, the miners had already begun laying out a town, setting up farming operations, and organizing a mining company. On April 9 Jesse Smith wrote: Reached the Cottonwoods on the Beaver [River] late, after traveling about 16 miles. Went to work fencing, ploughing, sowing, making water ditches, etc. I laid off the town of Minersville. A lead mining company was organized with Isaac Grundy for president; myself, secretary; T. Lewis, William Barton, John Blackburn, James H. Rollins, Silas S. Smith and Samuel Lewis, directors. 21
Grundy and his business partners, recognizing the failure of earlier mining operations, developed this find prudently. They planted crops to sustain themselves and did not immediately build a large reduction furnace. They worked the mine cautiously but confidently. Soon they had lead to ship to Salt Lake City. Onjuly 13 Smith noted: "Four of us worked digging lead ore, got out about 1000 pounds. (Tues.) Worked, hauling ore and melting it. On the 28th our company sent some 650 pounds to Salt Lake City."22 So confident were the miners of their operation that on August 5 Tarleton Lewis at Beaver reported to George A. Smith, one of the 21 Smith Journal, pp. 35-36. One of the directors, Rollins, had been involved in the Mormon California gold mining operations in the early 1850s. 22 Ibid., p. 36.
Utah Historical Quarterly
apostles assigned to supervise the Saints in southern Utah, that the operation would "be able to supply the territory with all the lead and zinc that would be needed." 23 Six days later, Apostle Smith visited with Brigham Young in Salt Lake City until 11:00 P. M. discussing "the prospects of the Southern Country and . . . the lead mines at Minersville on the Beaver."24 This was not the only information Young received from the mines. On August 24 Isaac Grundy wrote to him, describing the operation and the area, requesting more miners for the settlement, suggesting that the farming village downstream be merged with the Minersville settlement, and asking for advice. His letter, along with one sent to Young a month later, gives perhaps the best description of the operation available: According to your instructions I proceeded to select and organize a company of ten men for the purpose of working the mines in this vicinity. We are located about sixteen miles down the stream from Beaver Settlement the mines are about four miles North of us in the edge of the mountains. We have prospected several leads and raised between six and eight thousand lbs. of lead ore. I think when the ore is in smelting order it will yield about sixty-eight percent lead. We intend now to put up a temporary furnace and send up to your city between 00 and 1000 lbs between this time and Conference.
Grundy described the living conditions and the farming operation that the miners developed to maintain self-sufficiency, noting that We have not yet been able to put up houses for ourselves.. . . We have been quite busy subduing and fencing out field, building a dam and making ditches, &c, we are preparing to sow fall wheat which we think will be ready to harvest next J u n e or early in July.
Grundy closed with a reiteration of his cautiousness and an invitation for more miners to come down and assist the operation: We purpose [sic] carrying on these mines upon a safe [process] and do not design putting up extensive works or machinery until we have further proved them we wish to raise a considrble [sic] quantity of ore before going to very great expense in building furnaces. So far as we have worked or examined the leads the prospect is very favorable. . . . We would like to employ about four good miners we would give them steady work and a chance to take up land and raise their bread with the rest of us should the mines fail. 23
"Journal History," August 5, 1859. Apostle George A. Smith had been the sponsor of a gold missionary in California in 1850. ""Journal History," August 11, 1859. "Isaac Grundy to Brigham Young, August 24, 1859, LDS Church Library Archives.
A month later, writing again to Brigham Young, Grundy explained that a small air furnace had been built and that lead would be again sent to Salt lake City. He continued to express caution ("We do not wish to get no debt beyond our income"), and he repeated his plea for more workers, explaining that their numbers were "too few to carry on the business successfully."26 Grundy's letters agree with other evidence indicating that although this operation was supported by Brigham Young and other church leaders, it was intended as a profit-making business venture. T h e organization of a mining company reinforces this idea. In addition, Jesse Smith's journal refers to a business deal. On January 9, 1860, he wrote, "The company let the mines to John Protheroe to mine on shares." James Henry Rollins (who was called as bishop of Minersville in 1859) mentioned another contractual arrangement in his memoirs: "The company with Isaac Grundy hauled rock and made a primitive furnace, to which we hauled the ore, Brother Grundy smelting it for one-half of the product." Apparently, some of the men objected to the arrangement, because Rollins wrote on the next line: "Some of our company withdrew." Another reference in Rollins's memoirs removes all doubt about the intention of the lead miners to profit personally from their work: T h e first bar of lead smelted weighed 60 lbs. This was carried to Salt Lake by Tarlton Lewis. The six bars I took myself, and sold to the merchants for 250 a lb., and I obtained for it shoes, clothing and groceries of all kinds. After this we procured molds which run bars that weighed 1 lb., and sometimes we run 5 lb. flat bars. T h e 5 lb. bars I sold to Brother Pyper for the purpose of making white lead. The smaller bars I sold for 250 a piece, as I went up through the country. 27
Indeed, the miners were simply following Brigham Young's advice: Your best plan for making the lead business increase and sustain itself is for you to market, at the best prices you can, small quantities as you produce them, and procure your groceries, provisions, &c, and increase your works as your means derived therefrom and the demand increases. 28
A few months later the Desert News encouraged the miners in their work, suggesting that they could make "handsome profits by supplying the market at prices that will effectually exclude importation."29 26
Isaac Grundy to Brigham Young, September 28, 1859, LDS Church Library Archives. James Henry Rollins, "Reminiscence," MS, 1888, p. 26, LDS Church Library Archives. 28 Brigham Young to Isaac Grundy, October 10, 1859, LDS Church Library Archives. ""Journal History," April 4, 1860 (from Desert News, 10:36). 27
Utah Historical Quarterly
According to the Journal History, the mining operation prospered in the early months of 1860, but later in the year production of lead apparently slowed down. 30 Although no specific reason was given for this slowdown in Journal History records, it seems to have coincided with the development of silver deposits in the Minersville mines. T h e men at Minersville probably knew about the silver content of their lead ore from the beginning. Lorenzo Brown's October 17-20, 1856, diary entry recorded of the Las Vegas venture, "Grundy is quite confident there exists a large amount of silver in the lead as it is very hard and has a clear ring unknown to lead."31 If Grundy had suspicions that the Las Vegas lead contained silver, he certainly would have suspected silver in the Minersville ore. According to one account referring to the Minersville ore: T h e ore was soft in nature, with gold assays running as high as one-half ounce to the ton, silver from 19 to 30 ounces, and 38% lead. T h e high silver content caused the report to be carried to the East that the Mormons used silver bullets.
If the miners did not realize the value of their claims initially, they certainly did later. In February 1861 two visiting Mormon leaders, George A. Smith and Joseph Young (Brigham's brother), "visited the mines near Minersville. Elder Joseph A. Young went down 80 feet into one of the pits and secured specimens of lead, copper, silver, anitmni [sic], zinc, bismuth and iron ores." On March 7 the two men arrived in Salt Lake, presumably to report back and show their samples to Brigham Young. 33 Although the report of metal samples taken by Joseph Young may seem exaggerated (Could he really have found such variety in a single deposit of ore?), another account contains a definite statement that silver was being mined: "Elder Geo. A. Smith reported that the led [sic] mines near Minersville worked by Nathaniel V. Jones have turned into silver worth $1700 a ton."34 This report may also be exaggerated; nevertheless, it gives positive support to the contention that Mormon miners sought to develop silver finds long before the "first" silver discoveries made near Salt Lake in 1863. 30
Ibid., February 15, March 12, April 4, July 18, 1860. Lorenzo Brown Diary, cited in Law, Mormon Indian Missions, p. 77. 32 Merkley, Monuments to Courage, p. 210. 33 "Journal History," February 21, March 7, 1861. 34 Ibid., March 28, 1861. 31
Apparently, the reports from Minersville enticed Brigham Young to visit the mines on his tour of southern Utah in May and J u n e of 1861: On Monday the 3rd, Pres. Young and most of the company took the road to Minersville, thirty-five miles distant from Parowan, in a north-westernly direction. T h e road was found to be very rough. They arrived at Minersville at 3:00 p.m., and held a meeting in the evening. Presidents Wells and Young addressed the congregation. On Tuesday, the party visited the lead mines, some four miles from Minersville and then went to Beaver. . . .
Later, when writing to Amasa Lyrnan and Charles Rich (apostles to the gold fields and cofounders of San Bernardino), then in Europe, about his trip to southern Utah, Brigham Young mentioned his mine visit but chose not to say anything about silver in the mines: "We visited the mines near Minersville, and at once saw that an abundance of lead, zinc, and antimony, and red, yellow, and white paint can be produced there, so soon as the proper attention are devoted to those matters." 36 It is not clear whether Young encouraged or discouraged silver mining at that time. He might have chosen not to speak about it while quietly permitting it. Or he may have discouraged it while encouraging the miners to produce the lead needed for the territory. Whatever his reaction, no further mention was made of the mines until 1864 when the coming of non-Mormon miners to southern Utah led to the organization of a mining district. In light of the preceding evidence, the question naturally arises: Why are the Minersville silver mining attempts ignored in most of the histories of precious metal mining in Utah? There are several reasons. First, there seems to have been some incentive and precedent for Mormons to suppress any evidence of precious metal discoveries in Utah in order to discourage non-Mormon entry into the territory. This makes written information about Minersville silver difficult to find. Second, the early Mormon property right system did not require the customary mining district organization. To most historians a mining district's organization was simultaneous with a significant discovery. Third, adequate technology simply was not available to process the Minersville silver. To understand fully why Minersville is ignored as the first silver mining area in Utah, each of these three reasons must be considered in its historical context. 3
Tbid., June 8, 1861 (from Deseret News, 11:116, p. 2). Ibid., June 13, 1861 (from Millennial Star, 23:509).
Utah Historical Quarterly
Mormon suppression of mining discoveries to discouragenon-Mormon entry into the territory seems clear in light of the political climate of the early 1860s. Johnston's Army had entered the territory in 1858, and the Mormons still felt threatened. They realized that their hold on the Great Basin was tenuous and that an influx of Gentiles could overwhelm them. T h e Civil War was in its infancy when Brigham Young's secretary recorded: T h e President is usually cheerful, the present distracted state of affairs of the U.S. following so soon after their wicked attempts to root up the Kingdom of God, and afflict his saints inspires the President with strong hopes for the prosperity of the cause of God. . . . But . . . the discovery of a gold mine might be the means of breaking us up. 37
It is not surprising that he vehemently denounced actions that might encourage such a find when he toured southern Utah (including Minersville) four months later: In the house of George A. Smith at Parowan, Prest. Young gave a short b u t very powerful s e r m o n . He r e b u k e d the speculators very sharplyâ€”those who were trading with the army and gentiles and who still profess to be Saints. He said "I marvel at the patience I have had with such men. Here is B. F. Stewart and his brother and hundreds of others I could name. Bishop Warren is another. They are a stink in my nostrils, they will trade with our enemies and sustain them. They would let in all hell on us for a few dimes; they would like to open a gold mine, establish whiskey and whore shops, do anything for money, and be hale [sic] fellows well met with those damned curses. They would cut my throat if they had the power, but I will live to see them damned. . . ."3
It is safe to conclude that church leaders muted any reports of silver finds at Minersville. No account of silver reached the press; the only references to the discovery exist in private reports from southern Utah church leaders to their prophet. At the same time, the silver discovery has been overlooked by historians because no mining district was organized to specify property rights over the lead-silver ore. Typically, when a gold or silver deposit was located in the early West, a mining district was formed to delineate and legitimatize claims. Almost without exception, districts were created by the local miners as soon as recognized discoveries were made. A mining district, with its by-laws and regulations, notified the public that precious metal mining was taking place.39 37 Brigham Young's Office Journal, January 23, 1861, cited in E. B. Long, The Saints and the Union: Utah Territory During the Civil War (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1981), p. 24. 38 "History of Brigham Young," May 23, 1861. 39 Charles Howard Shinn, Mining Camps: A Study in American Frontier Government (1885; reprint ed., New York: Alfred Knopf, 1948).
In Minersville no mining district was necessary. T h e Mormons held to a system of property based on three principles: first, the right to hold property was based upon its use; second, natural resources, including mineral deposits, were publicly owned; and third, business was subject to close civil and ecclesiastical regulation. 40 This property right system provided nearly all of the advantages that a mining district would afford. T h e principle of use insured that no one could claim and withhold potentially valuable mineral property from prospecting and mining. T h e strict community control over natural resources provided for arbitration of any mineral property disputes. And tight church and civil control over private enterprise meant strong enforcement of established property rights. It should not be surprising that the early miners at Minersville failed to form a mining district to protect their finds. While the absence of a mining district in 1860 Minersville makes the silver discovery easy to ignore, the lack of silver smelting technology had made production of commercial-grade silver impossible. Brigham Young had considered himself fortunate to have Isaac Grundy available to process lead in Las Vegas, but the only man in the territory to understand lead smelting almost certainly did not possess the knowledge necessary to separate silver profitably from the ore. He may have been able to extract some silver, but it was probably mixed with lead. A knowledge of the technical and refined smelting process was probably not possessed by anyone in the territory at the time. Real silver smelting did not begin in Utah until almost ten years later when the transcontinental railroad made Utah mining boom. It was tried unsuccessfully in 1864 in Rush Valley, near Salt Lake. At that time, soldiers stationed in Utah during the Civil War invested over $100,000 in smelting processes with unprofitable results. T h e 1864 non-Mormon miners certainly had more up-to-date technology than the 1860 Minersville Mormons. Ore actually had to be shipped out of the territory for successful smelting. 41 In sum, the silver mining operations near Minersville are forgotten because they were not publicized, not accompanied by the usual mining district property structure, and not commercially profitable. But they did take place. Early western mining history is replete with stories of mining operations that were little known and 40
Leonard J. Arrington, "Property among the Mormons," Rural Sociology 16 (1951): 339-52. ""Roberts, Comprehensive History, 5:68-69; LeonardJ. Arrington, "Abundance from the Earth: T h e Beginnings of Commercial Mining in Utah," Utah Historical Quarterly 31 (1963): 204-7.
Utah Historical Quarterly
soon forgotten. Because of the circumstances surrounding the Minersville discovery and silver mining development, its story fits quite easily that category. It has seldom been recognized as the first precious metal mining operation within the present-day boundaries of Utah. A year after Brigham Young's visit to Minersville in 1861, Utah was once again the unhappy host to a federal army. In 1862 Col. Patrick E. Connor was sent to Utah with a detachment of California and Nevada Volunteers to protect the mail route, subdue Indian tribes in the area, and keep an eye on the Mormons. After establishing Fort Douglas in Salt Lake City they had little to do. Instead of letting his troops sit idle, Connor encouraged them to prospect for gold and silver. On October 17, 1863, silver ore was discovered in Bingham Canyon in the Oquirrh Mountains a few miles southwest of the Mormon capital, and a wave of excitement and optimism swept over the soldiers. 42 Connor saw the discovery as the beginning of another gold or silver rush that would profit him personally and attract thousands of outsiders, removing the Mormons from their dominant position in the territory. Clearly, a mining district was needed in Minersville to prevent potential entrants from seizing old Mormon claims. T h e value of the mines was recognized, as well as the fact that existing enforcement structures under the Mormon system would not control outsiders. So, it should not be surprising that Bentham Fabian, a writer who described the status of Utah mining in 1872, reported that the Pioneer Mining District was organized in 1864 to regulate mining activities near Minersville.43 None of the original records of the Pioneer District are known to remain. If they survived through the 1870s, they were probably destroyed in an 1889 Beaver County Courthouse fire.44 Nevertheless, it may be surmised what the district organization must have been like from the account of a group of Mormons and nonMormons who organized a mining district in 1864 in Meadow Valley, about 100 miles west of Minersville: All the men went to the Meadow Valley camp at the Warm Spring. T h e following morning, March 18, they held a "miners meeting." William Hamblin was elected Chairman, and the men proceeded to establish the Meadow Valley Mining District and passed laws to govern the filing 42
Arrington "Abundance from the Earth," pp. 194-205 Fabian, The Resources of Utah, p. 14. 44 Merkley, Monuments of Courage, 148-49. 43
A hotel from a later period in Minersville history. Historic preservation office photograph, USHS collections.
of claims. Using [Stephen] Sherwood's copy of the [1863 West Mountain Mining District by-laws] as a guide, ". . . the laws were passed section by section, sections being changed or rejected to suit our sense of right and justice; they were adopted or chanted by a vote . . ." T h e group then elected Stephen Sherwood the Recorder. . . ,45
With the organization of the Pioneer Mining District, mining in the area probably continued quietly through the rest of the 1860s, although the rate of return on silver mining in Utah was negligible until the railroad brought low-cost transportation to the territory. History contains few references to mining activity in the district during this time except in a speech by Territorial Gov. Charles Durkee and in the J o u r n a l History. Durkee reported in his December 1866 address to the territorial legislature that he considered the Minersville and other Utah mines to be "equal in richness to any yet discovered upon the continent." 46 A few years later, a letter filed in the LDS church historian's office reported that work continued on the Minersville mines. 47 Little more is known until the coming of the railroad to southern Utah in 1871 stimulated mining in the area. At that time a new mining district—the Lincoln District—was organized, and claims from the Pioneer District were transferred to it. T h e new district continued through the turn of the century. Although the area never experienced a mining rush, several mines produced silver and gold consistently through the 1870s.48 It may thus be identified as a successful, albeit limited, conclusion to the Mormon mining venture. 4, John Michael Bourne, "Early Mining in Southwestern Utah and Southeastern Nevada, 1864-1873: T h e Meadow Valley, Pahranagat, and Pioche Mining Rushes" (M.A. thesis, University of Utah, 1973), pp. 27-28. 4fi "Journal History," January 10, 1866, p. 3. 4 Tbid., February 19, 1869, p. 7. 48 U.S., Bureau of Census, Statistics and Technology of the Precious Metals (Washington, D . C : Government Printing Office, 1888), p. 475; Robinson, They Answered the Call, pp. 18-24.
Warm Winters and White Rabbits: Folklore m of Welsh and English Coal Miners BY MARIANNE FRASER Trip of coal from mine to tipple at Sunnyside, Utah, ca. 1915. Two of the men are Jim Westfield and Bill Memmot. Courtesy of Jack Thorpe.
documented folk beliefs as crucial components of culture. For the early Utah Welsh and English coal camp immigrants, the oral transmission of beliefs assisted both in the continuation of customs from one country to another and in the explanation of unpredictable, dangerous occurences in a new nation. Even though the immigrants were assimilated into the larger cultural unit of the coal camp, they maintained, to varying degrees, distinctive folk beliefs. T h e folk beliefs of any g r o u p reflect a particular history and style of life. Accordingly, it is not surprising that some Welsh and English beliefs contain characteristics of both agricultural traditions and industrial lore. Far from being unique, many of these beliefs
O I N C E ANCIENT TIMES AUTHORS HAVE
Ms. Fraser is a writer in Salt Lake City.
Folklore of Coal Miners
mirror stories or story variations that have been told and retold for centuries. T h e Carbon County beliefs reflect such common threads. In synthesizing this manuscript, n u m e r o u s beliefs were documented â€” from "First Footin' m to the reading of tea leaves. In order to facilitate a systematic analysis of a small area of folk beliefs the following text will focus only on the Welsh and English lore related to the coal mines. T h e material will present the beliefs within the context of previously documented work in the United States, the British Isles, and continental Europe. T h e folk beliefs in this paper were acquired through systematic interviews with seven older adults, four women and three men. Their average age was seventy with a range of sixty-three to seventy-nine years. Five of the respondents were first-generation Americans of Welsh descent, while two were born and spent part of their childhood in England and Wales before immigrating to the United States. All of the men were retired Carbon County coal miners. Their average number of working years in the mine was forty-one with a range of twenty-five to forty-nine years. Two of the men started working in coal mines at the age of fourteen, while the third started work when he was sixteen. T h e women lived and worked an average of thirty-one years in Carbon County coal camps. Their fathers and most of their brothers were miners. All but two of the people interviewed spent the majority of their childhoods in Castle Gate. 2 T h e documented beliefs were common from the 1900s to the late 1950s. Every belief or story was checked and recounted with each informant. Common threads and basic story patterns became discernible with this technique. T h e beliefs are presented in two categories: general mine folklore and below-ground beliefs. GENERAL FOLKLORE: T O DREAM OF MUDDY WATER
Traditionally, the greatest body of miners' folk beliefs was concerned with omens or premonitions that either predicted disaster or prevented trouble. 3 Since an outstanding characteristic of a miner's '"First Footin' " was celebrated on New Year's Day and is well documented in Welsh, Scottish, and Irish folklore. T h e first visitor determines the household's luck for the next twelve months. For good luck, the first person should be male, dark, healthy, handsome, and bring symbolic gifts of bread or coal to insure prosperity. 2 Castle Gate was a bustling coal camp four miles north of Helper. It was founded in 1888 and at its height boasted three operating coal mines. In 1972 the last mine was closed. In 1974 the seventyseven remaining families were relocated and the town was leveled. 3 Lydia Fish, The Folklore of the Coal Miners of the Northeast of England, 2 vols. (Norwood, Pa: Norwood Editions, 1975), 1:15.
Utah Historical Quarterly
job was danger, e.g., rock falls, fires, floods, and lethal gases, it is not surprising the miners and their families paid very careful attention to these omens. This concern is consistent with the material shared by the respondents. One belief on which the respondents unanimously agreed was that a horseshoe over the mine entrance brought the miners good luck. T o insure the luck would not run out the shoe was always hung with the horns or open end at the top. T h e custom of touching the horseshoe four times for luck was common among Cornish miners in England and Cornish immigrants in Michigan. 4 In Carbon County as in California and Montana the horseshoes were not touched before entering the mine. 5 As a symbol of luck the horseshoe is found throughout both American and European mining lore. In England the miners of Devon and Cornwall believed a horseshoe at the mine's entrance prevented the devil from entering. 6 They believed the devil always traveled in a circle, but when he tried to enter the mine in this fashion he became trapped on the horseshoe. While the horseshoe brought the miners good luck, a portent of ill fortune was a white animal, in particular a white rabbit outside of the mine entrance. 7 T h e informants agreed the omen meant ill fortune, but they could remember no explicit behavior change that resulted from seeing the white animal. In England, however, it was not uncommon for miners to refuse to go down in the pit once the animal was sighted. 8 Although no time of day was given by the Carbon County informants, in England the animal was looked for during the dead of night when the miners were walking from their homes to the pits. English folk literature about this belief dates back to the seventeenth century and describes the white rabbit as a predictor of a fatal accident. 9 Prior to the seventeenth century French miners believed the white rabbit was a spirit who haunted the subterranean mines and called him the "little miner." 10 4
AlfredJenkinand Kennith Hamilton, The Cornish Miner, 3d ed. (London: G. Allen and Unwin, 1962), p. 297; Richard M. Dorson, Bloodstoppers and Beanwalkers (Cambridge, Mass: Harvard University Press, 1952), p. 116. 5 Taped interview with Thomas Hilton, Sr., Helper, Utah, February 4, 1981. 8 William Jones, "Miners," Credulities Past and Present (London: Chatto and Windus, 1880), p. 135. 7 Thomas Hilton, Sr., interview. 8 Jones, Credulities Past and Present, p. 54. 9 Ibid. '"Ibid.
Folklore of Coal Miners
Little white animals as predictors of disaster were also known to German and Eastern European miners. Lydia Fish postulates that the continental miners may have brought the tradition with them to England. 11 Perhaps it crossed from there to the United States. Another animal with a long historical connection to the mines and miners was the mine rat or mouse. T h e Carbon County respondents all agreed that when the mice left the mine it was a forewarning of impending disaster. 12 Most American miners hold this belief, some to such a degree that the mice or rats are fed by the miners and treated as pets. 13 Welsh miners in California and Montana also believed the deserting mice were ominous. In addition, they credited a white rat as leading the evacuating pack.14 Neither treating mice as pets nor seeing a leading white rat was reported by the informants. A group of people who became as concerned about these omens as the miners but were barred from the mines were the coal camp women and female children. A woman in the mine represented very bad luck, not only for the individual who saw her but for the entire crew.15 According to Hand, this belief is one of the most universal of all American miners' superstitions. 16 Interestingly, it has not been traced to English folklore, although Fish did find it documented in Welsh folk literature. 17 T h e English variation of this belief stated it was unlucky to meet a woman, especially an old woman, on the way to the pit. Encountering a woman was serious enough that many times a miner would not go into the pit.18 This belief was also known in Scotland and Wales. Although a certain degree of skepticism may have surrounded some beliefs about the mine, one area received almost universal deference â€” dreams. Dreams were highly respected for their powers of forecasting disasters. Even some bosses accepted dreams as an excuse for a work absence. In Carbon County a very common Welsh belief was that any dream about muddy water meant a death in the "Fish, Folklore of the Coal Miners, 1:6. ^Interview with May Hardee Hilton, Helper, Utah, January 22, 1981. 13 George Gershon Korson, Coal Dust on the Fiddle (Hatboro, Pa.: Folklore Associates, 1965), 205-7. 14
Wayland D. Hand, "California Miners' Folklore: Below Ground," California Folklore Quarterly 1 (1942): 136; Wayland D. Hand, "Folklore, Customs, and Traditions of the Butte Miner," California Folklore Quarterly 5 (1946): 23 'â€˘'Taped interview with Evelyn Jones Patterick, Price, Utah, January 26, 1981. 16 Hand, "California Miners' Folklore," pp. 139-40 17 Fish, Folklore of the Coal Miners, 2:72. 1S J. R. Leifchild, Our Coal and Our Coal Pits, 2d ed. (London: Frank Cass and Co., 1968), p. 201.
—. - r i f
/ ' /
- ^ y
*3jm 1 bE^f/
•aMMMMMV... ** %
^ ! l
Ca^/fc Gate, c7to/i, w / ) / 9205. Man by horse with "x" aftof e is Alma Hardee who was killed in 1924 explosion at Castle Gate. Courtesy of author.
family. However, "if the dream was of muddy water in the mine it was a very bad omen and meant there would be a death in the mine." 19 Both American and European folk literature support the miners' strong convictions about the importance of dreams. 20 T h e interpretation of muddy water as a foreteller of death, however, was not found in the literature, despite the fact that to this day dreams of muddy water cause uneasiness in many Carbon County residents. Historically, not only was attention to dreams important in preventing disasters, so was respect for certain days of the year. A common British Isles belief related to Chrismas Day. On that day fairies and spirits were said to hold High Mass in the deepest recesses of the mine. T o disturb them could bring terrible misfortune. 21 T h e '"Interview with Saline Hardee Fraser, Helper, Utah, January 11, 1981. Wayland D. Hand, "Folklore from Utah's Silver Mining Camps,"/ourna/ of American Folklore 54 (1941):155-56; Hand, "California Miners' Folklore," pp. 139-40; Dorothy Miles Howard, "Some Mining Lore from Maryland," Western Folklore 9 (1950): 165; Ernest Baughman, Type and Motif Index of the Folktales of England and North America (The Hague: Indiana University Folklore Series No. 20, 1966), xiii. 2 'Jones, Credulities Past and Present, p. 133. 20
Folklore of Coal Miners
Carbon County miners remembered working on Christmas Day with no sense of impending disaster. T h e informants remembered the New Year holiday as the most common idle day, more out of deference to the "spirited" miners rather than the mine spirits. Be that as it may, another rather common omen related to the forecasting powers of the weather. In Castle Gate a "mild warm winter meant a full graveyard." 22 This omen was strongly believed because the devastating Castle Gate mine explosion of 1924 was preceded by such a winter. T h e closest documented mining lore about warm winters found was a Welsh belief about the month of January. It was said that a sunny January would be avenged by February and March. 23 According to one poetic couplet, it was better to see one's mother on a bier than to have fine weather in January. 24 BELOW GROUND: T H E MINE W I L L TALK TO YOU
T h e foreboding nature of that statement seems particularly suited to the below-ground environment of the early Carbon County coal mines. For example, in 1924 the Castle Gate No. 2 mine measured approximately 3,000 feet by 1,600 feet. This rectangular area yielded approximately fifteen miles of corridors. Lighting was minimal, consisting of sparsely placed lamps in the main haulageway and carbide lamps on the miners' cloth caps. T h e mine's districts, sections, and rooms were like a subterranean city during the blackest of nights. T h e temperature at the working face was 60Â° to 70Â° Fahrenheit. T h e musty air seemed intensified by the mine's oily, chemical smell. T h e noise level varied from the deafening sound of machinery to the ultimate silence of the fire boss's inspection â€” when he was the only person in the entire mine. Within this environment it is not surprising that numerous beliefs were held about spirits and ghosts living in the mine. T h e idea of mine demons, spirits, and fairies appears to be both common and ancient. 25 Some miners believe the devil himself might be met underground. T h e Carbon County informants reported no such belief in devils or fairies. They did, however, put much confidence in the importance of spirits or ghosts. An often-told story relates to the May 8, 1900, Winter Quarters mine explosion that killed some 200 men. Many miners claimed that not all of the bodies were found and 22
Patterick interview. T. Gynn Jones, Welsh Folklore and Folk Custom, 2d ed. (Totowa, N.J.: Rowman and Littlefield, 1979), p. 135. 24 Ibid. 25 Fish, Folklore of the Coal Miners, 2:78. 23
Utah Historical Quarterly
that, to this day, the dead miners' spirits roam the mine seeking rest. A miner familiar with the story r e m e m b e r e d it as follows: . . . after they o p e n e d it [mine] u p and got workin' again [after the explosion]. . . . They use to pull the mine cars in with horses . . . I mean they'd take five or six coal cars in at a time. . . . This guy, he'd be sittin' u p in front by the horse and he'd look back and see this light on the back of his train goin' in. Well, at a certain spot that light would leave and get off. . . . H e kept tellin' them [other miners] that this thing was happenin'. So eventually they decided they better stop and look it over . . . and when they got there they found this other body. Where the light got off, that was the spot. 26
T h e r e are six d o c u m e n t e d American story variations describing a ghost riding in a horse-drawn vehicle and disappearing at a certain point in a mine. 27 Both English and American literature substantiates the belief that the ghost of a person killed in a mine accident will h a u n t the scene of his death. 28 T h e light leading the way to the body may relate to the idea that a person's soul is often described as a light. 29 This concept, combined with the common belief that a person's spirit can never rest until his body is buried, could explain the Winter Quarters' p h e n o m e n o n . Respect and fear of dead co-workers' spirits was prevalent in almost every mine. A particularly d r e a d e d place was the Castle Gate No. 2 Mine after the 1924 disaster. Because of the force of the explosion almost every miner's body was disfigured. Stories a b o u n d of body parts being found in the undercuttings. H a n d s in gloves, pieces of skulls in the old cloth caps, and horses' ribs were found for years after the blast. Due to the extent of the damages the mine's dips (low working rooms of the mine) were sealed from 1924 to 1941. T h e y were o p e n e d in 1941 to aid the war effort. Even after seventeen years the miners remained nervous: Some of them [miners] even like in my time there were places they w o u l d n ' go. T h e y ' d go with s o m e o n e else but they w o u l d n ' go alone. . . . T h e y felt there was ghosts in there . . . somebody from the explosion time. . . . They'd go part of the way and then come back, sayin' they saw somebody down there. . . . A lot of men had superstitions like that.
T h e belief that a mine is h a u n t e d by the ghosts of the killed miners has long been held both in the United States and in Europe. 26
T a p e d interview with T h o m a s Bendall, Spring Glen, Utah, February 3, 1981. B a u g h m a n , Type and Motif Index, p. 150. 28 Ibid. 29 Ibid., p. 85. 3u Bendall interview. 27
Folklore of Coal Miners
Sometimes the miners will say they can hear the ghosts working in the sealed mine sections.31 In addition, many miners believe a killed worker will haunt the mine if it is not possible to remove all of his body. Some very religious men refuse to work near a place a coworker was killed saying they "can feel the torment of the spirit."32 In addition to instilling fear, many miners and their families also believed the dead miner's spirit could be helpful, even in rescue operations. An often-told story about the 1924 Castle Gate explosion describes such an occurence: Grandma Jones [Mary Eynon Jones] was really superstitious. . . . She believed in reading tea leaves and the ouija board. When they hadn't found Dad [Alma N. Hardee] she came down to our house three or four days after [the explosion] and said she had a dream and Grandpa [Edward L.Jones, also killed in the explosion] had come and sat on her bed. She said she thought she was dreamin but he walked in and sat on the bed and said, 'Mary, I know where Almie is. They'll find him in so and so place in the main haulageway. . . . They say that's where they found him.' 3
A number of stories in the United States, Wales, and England document this type of helping behavior by some ghosts. Ghosts are also noted for sitting on the foot of the bed while speaking. 34 Traditionally, certain Welsh rituals were to be followed before a ghost would speak. Two of these were to address the ghost in the name of the Trinity and to ask it three times to tell its tale.3" These rituals were not reported as occuring before the ghost of Grandpa Jones spoke. In Welsh folklore it is a common belief that a departed person's ghost only appears for a definite purpose: to avenge a wrong, to fulfill a neglected duty, or to do a kindness to a relative or a friend. 36 This idea of doing a kindness to the living is illustrated in a wellrespected story about the 1900 Winter Quarters mine disaster: . . . Grandma [Mary] Richards's brother-in-law, he was quite a religious guy. He said he felt somethin' so strong tellin' him not to go into the mine that day [May 8, 1900]. At first he ignored it but it kept up and got stronger until he felt like a slap on his back and somethin' tellin' him not to go in. That was enough, he wouldn' go in. And that was the day the mine blew up. 37 31
L. J. Rodgers, "Homewood: Portrait of a Village; A Survey of the Customs, Traditions, and Beliefs in a Derbyshire Mining Village" (Diss., University of Leeds, 1967), p. 322. 32 Fish, Folklore of the Coal Miners, 2:85. 33 Taped interview wth Edwin Eynon Hardee, Helper, Utah, February 20, 1981. 34 Baughman, Type and Motif Index, xiii. 35 T. Gynn Jones, Welsh Folklore, p. 88. 36 Ibid. 37 Bendall interview.
Utah Historical Quarterly
254 ÂŤ, â€˘ " *
SAz/7 of miners at Castle Gate, early 1920s. Alma Hardee, fourth from left in back row, was then a supervisor. He was killed in 1924 explosion. Courtesy of author.
Hand documented both ghosts and voices warning miners of dangers. 38 In the eastern United States coal fields some miners considered to have "second sight" would even see phantom funeral processions. When the news of the apparition spread, work ceased immediately. 39 Not only could ghosts predict occurrences, the mine itself was given both a personality and a predictive ability. T h e mine was said to "talk" to the men. T h e constant shifting and cracking of coal in the Carbon County coal mines was sometimes interpreted as a warning. "That's the mine talkin' to you. If you don't listen, you're as good as dead." 40 This belief seems to be a variation on the old English tales of heroic mine workers or "Big Hewers." Specifically, Durham miners said that Bob Towers was talking when the timbers groaned. 41 An English ballad about this Big Hewer said he weighed eighteen stone 38
Hand, "California Miners' Folklore," p. 130. Korson, Coal Dust on the Fiddle, p. 204. 40 Hardee interview. 4 'Fish, Folklore of the Coal Miners, 1:69. 39
Folklore of Coal Miners
(approximately 250 pounds) and never worked with a partner because no one could keep up with him. If he wanted a chew and did not have any "baccy" he would pull a rivet out of a tub and chew it. Different coal fields had variations of their own heroic workers. For example, in Wales when the ground settled it was "Big Isaac Lewis workin' again." In the United States, "Big John" has been immortalized in both story and song. These tales and the eccentric nature of some of the hero's accomplishments reflect an essential component of a miner's life â€” humor. In Carbon County, stories abound of tricks played on coworkers, from nailing lunch buckets to the floor to putting mice in the bucket before the miner took it home to his wife.42 Korson and Davies point out that it is essential for miners to see the lighter side of life in order to counteract the severe, dangerous working conditions and triumph over the deadly day-to-day routine. 43 Without question, however, the people who universally suffered the most from "miner's humor" were the new employees. 44 In Carbon County the experienced miners' favorite pastime was to develop increasingly creative ways to terrorize the already frightened apprentices. A favorite below-ground initiation rite in Castle Gate No. 2 Mine occurred when one of the experienced miners sent a rookie back to uncouple the cars. Since the coal train was usually ten to twenty cars in length, it was a long, dark, lonely walk. Unknown to the rookie, a welcoming party was waiting. Another miner wearing a Halloween mask would hide in one of the coal cars. While the rookie nervously tried to uncouple the cars, the masked miner would j u m p up and scream. Needless to say, the tactic elicited a variety of responses: "Some of 'em would start runnin' and never did come back. Or they'd stop for lunch and we wouldn' see 'em again."45 All things come full circle. Some of the experienced miners learned the concept of poetic justice the hard way when, in the depths of Castle Gate No. 2 Mine, they received a very unexpected visitor. A little background is in order. A community of Japanese immigrants lived directly across the valley from the mine. As part of their activities they raised turkeys. It seems that the turkeys' favorite 42
Hardee interview. George Gershon Korson, "Humor of the Anthracite Miner," Pennsylvania Arts and Sciences 2 (1937): 88-89. Lynn Davies, "Aspects of Mining Folklore in Wales," 9 Folk Life, p. 104. 44 Alan Smith, Discovering Folklore in Industry (Tring, Herefordshire, England: Shire Publications, 1969), pp. 15-16. 45 Bendall interview. 43
Utah Historical Quarterly
exercise was to walk across the bridge leading to the mine and roost on the mine entrance. T h e rest is history: One day I guess one of 'em was roostin' on top of the entrance and somehow it fell off and into a coal car. No one knew it was there and they took all the cars into the mine as usual. They got clean into the mine and one of the men went back to uncouple the cars and all of a sudden we heard this gobblin, gobblin, gobblin. You shoulda' seen them men move. 46
T h e verbal story ends there, leaving to the listener's imagination the ensuing chaos. It seems that the turkey came out on top: Oh yeh, I remember the turkey. I was on the motor and here comes the turkey walkin' out just as big as you please. Jack Mills had a rope around its neck and was walkin' it out [of the mine]. But the turkey was leadin'. 47
This type of h u m o r o u s story provides a lighter side to the miners' below-ground work. On another level, Lucas believes initiation rites and rituals serve as an informal, systematic method of eliminating the psychologically unfit miner. 48 T h e miners had to feel they could depend on each other during times of crisis, such as a cave-in or entombment. For those who passed the initiation rites, part of their mandatory socialization process was fulfilled. As with most circumstances, the initiation rites evolved and changed over time. Likewise, when documenting these beliefs some were found to have changed over the thirty-year span the interview covered. Two notable examples relate to whistling in the mine and the significance of the miner's helmet light going out. Traditionally, whistling in the mine was strictly forbidden. H a n d documents this ban on whistling as one of the most widespread of all miners' superstitions. A California mine foreman reportedly told H a n d he fired at least a dozen men for whistling. 49 This custom was also documented in Utah (Park City), Montana, Michigan, Maryland, Illinois, Kentucky, and Pennsylvania. 50 Objections to whistling were also strong in Wales and England, although recent 46
Ibid. Thomas Hilton, Sr., interview. 48 Rex A. Lucas, Men in Crisis: A Study of a Mine Disaster (New York, Basic Books, 1969) p. 2 1 . 49 Hand, "California Miners' Folklore," p. 135. 50 Wayland D. H a n d , "Folklore from Utah's Silver Mining Camps," pp. 150-51; H a n d , "Folklore, Customs, and Traditions of the Butte Miner," pp. 20-21; Dorson, Bloodstoppers, p. 211; Harry Middleton Hyatt, Folklore From Adams County, Illinois (New York: Alma Egan Hyatt Foundation, 1935), no. 8519; Edwin Valentine Mitchell, It's an Old Pennslyvania Custom (New York: Vanguard Press, 1947), pp. 239-40; Daniel Lindsey Thomas, Kentucky Superstitions (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1920), no. 3098; Howard, "Some Mining Lore from Maryland," p. 163. 47
Folklore of Coal Miners
"Old gray mare and Missouri mule"pull coal cars in mine at Latuda, Utah. Liberty Fuel Company photograph.
reports tell of men whistling underground. 5 1 T h e reasons given why one should not whistle varied from believing the whistling would bring evil spirits to causing an explosion or other disaster in the mine. 52 In Carbon County one informant remembers her Welshborn father adamantly supporting the idea that whistling in the mine would bring out evil spirits. 53 This occurred in the early 1920s. By 1950, however, a long-time miner remembered, people sang and whistled in the Castle Gate mines with no concern about evil consequences. 54 T h e lore related to the miner's light extinguishing has also changed. Traditionally, if a miner's light went out three times on one shift it meant his wife was with a lover. This English belief was, again according to Hand, common to miners everywhere. 55 It was supposedly introduced by Cornish miners, although tracing its European origins has been difficult.56 Regardless of its origins, it was so strongly believed in some mines that men were known to leave work to investigate the "goings on" at home. In Castle Gate during the 1920s, one informant remembered her father saying if the carbide light went out it was bad luck.57 A miner who retired in the 1960s remembered no such belief.58 51
Fish, Folklore of the Coal Miners, 2:78. Ibid., 2-77; E. Radford and M. A. Radford. Encyclopaedia of Superstitions (New York: Philosophical Library, 1949), p. 362. s3 Fraser interview. 54 Thomas Hilton, Sr., interview. 55 Hand, "California Miners' Folklore," 135-36. 56 Fish, Folklore of the Coal Miners, 2:78. 57 Fraser interview. 58 Thomas Hilton, Sr., interview. 52
Utah Historical Quarterly
In addition to alterations in beliefs over time, the Carbon County data also showed a significant deletion related to belief in or m e m o r y of " T o m m y K n o c k e r s " or " K n o c k e r s . " Historically, Knockers were little creatures who lived in the Welsh and English mines. Although mischievous, they were not considered vindictive and at times showed the miners the location of rich veins by their constant knocking. 5 9 H a n d d o c u m e n t s the belief in " T o m m y Knockers" as widespread in the western United States. 60 T h e interviewed Carbon County miners, however, recalled no knowledge of such beings. In conclusion, the Carbon County folklore illustrated both degrees of continuation of certain mining lore and alterations or, in some cases, deletions of so-called well-established beliefs. T h e majority of the documented beliefs were traced either to different parts of the United States or p e r h a p s closer to their origins in Great Britain and continental E u r o p e . T h e folk heritage of the Carbon County Welsh and English coal miners reflected not only the u n p r e dictability and d a n g e r of their lives but also the courage, hope, and h u m o r of a strong people. 5H
William Jones, Credulities Past and Present, 125-27. H a n d , "Folklore from Utah's Silver Mining Camps," p p . 142-43; H a n d , "Folklore, Customs, and Traditions of the Butte Miner," p p . 1-9. 80
This, the only known photograph of the Benjamin Presbyterian Church, was taken on the south side of the building in 1902 during a Hone family reunion. Members of the Herbert family are included in picture. All photographs were supplied by author.
The Benjamin Presbyterian Church, 1886-1916 BY LEE A. BUTLER
20, 1894, A COMMITTEE OF THE U T A H PRESBYTERY formed the First Presbyterian Church of Benjamin, Utah. This event was not unexpected; a Presbyterian Sunday school had been held in Benjamin since 1886. N o n e t h e l e s s , the e s t a b l i s h m e n t of a Presbyterian church in such a small Mormon community within Utah was not a likely occurrence. Of the numerous Presbyterian churches and missions in Utah the Benjamin Presbyterian church was in many ways unique. T h e United Presbyterian Church of America began its missionary efforts in Utah in 1869. Presbyterian missionaries entered Utah O N MAY
Mr. Butler is a graduate student in history presently on a research fellowship in Japan.
Utah Historical Quarterly
with the desire to save those people who had been led astray by the "diabolical" teachings of Mormonism, teachings that were in many instances in conflict with traditional Protestant beliefs. T h e missionaries saw the Mormons as non-Christians needing the gospel of Jesus Christ in order to be saved. Furthermore, the Presbyterians saw Brigham Young and the other members of the Mormon hierarchy as cult leaders, manipulating the Mormon people in all aspects of their lives.1 As the Presbyterian missionaries expanded their work in Utah during the early 1870s they realized the difficulty in converting the Mormons through conventional preaching and proselytizing. Therefore, they placed their emphasis on education, hoping to teach and convert children and young people, those who were still innocent and open to instruction. As a result, Presbyterian churches with their accompanying day schools, most of them on the elementary level, were established in most of the major towns in Utah. 2 T h e establishment of the Presbyterian church in Benjamin, Utah, was an exception to this plan. Presbyterian missionaries did not arbitrarily establish a mission in Benjamin; instead, a group of people within Benjamin sought and b r o u g h t the Presbyterian c h u r c h to their town. T h e Presbyterian c h u r c h never really flourished in Benjamin, but that is not surprising considering the size and social structure of the town. T h e surprising point is that the church was actually established and then maintained for as long as it was. T h e Presbyterian church of Benjamin was organized to fill a temporary religious need for a group of disfellowshipped and alienated Mormons. Benjamin did not figure in the plans of the Presbyterian missionaries in Utah for the simple reason that it was so small. In the late nineteenth century, as today, Benjamin was a rural community of a few h u n d r e d people. T h e r e was one general store, no significant commerce, and no positive signs of future growth for the town. Furthermore, the people of Benjamin were by and large devout Mormons who were intent on living their religion. 3 For the Presbytery of Utah to send a minister or even a schoolteacher to such a small Mormon community would have seemed foolish and wasteful. 'Samuel Ellis Wishard, The Mormons (New York: Presbyterian Home Mission, 1904), p. 60. 2 "The Mormons," Church at Home and Abroad 21 (May 1897):338. 3 T . Edgar Lyon, "Evangelical Protestant Missionary Activities in Mormon Dominated Areas: 1865-1900" (Ph.D. diss., University of Utah, 1962), p. 92. T h o u g h the Presbyterians entered Utah to convert the Mormons, the Presbyterian missionaries usually worked in towns where part of the population was non-Mormon. They simply experienced greater success among the non-Mormons than among the Mormons.
Benjamin Presbyterian Church
A much more logical site for the establishment of a mission was neighboring Payson with its nearly 3,000 inhabitants, a significant town in Utah Valley, not merely a tiny farming community. Presbyterian missionaries, seeing the possibility for success in Payson, established a mission there in 1877.4 T h e missionary work at Benjamin began as an outgrowth of the Payson initiative. However, the establishment of the Presbyterian church in Benjamin was largely the result of three families' efforts â€” Hones, Peays, and Herberts. The history of the Benjamin Presbyterian church can be understood only through a look at these three families, their backgrounds, their beliefs, and the experiences that shaped their lives. George Hone, his wife, and eight children were living in Foleshill, England, in 1856 when they heard the message of the
Only the men are identified in this Hone family photograph. Left to right from the top are Joshua, David, Henry, Caleb, and George.
Mormon missionaries. T h e family accepted their teachings, were baptized, and prepared to immigrate to America. T h e eldest son, David, after marrying, sailed to America in 1862 to join the Saints in Utah. The rest of the family, excepting the eldest daughter who died in 1859, followed in 1866.5 All members of the family settled in ^Presbyterian Missions in Utah (New York: Woman's Board of Home Missions of the Presbyterian Church, 1901), p. 7. 5 Leila Wilkey, "Memories I Have of My Grandmother and Grandfather Hone and Information of Their Lives I Have Obtained from Others and Records," MS in author's possession.
Utah Historical Quarterly
Provo, but their stay there was neither long nor peaceful. Disagreements occurred between members of the Hone family and LDS church leaders that resulted in bad feelings and disfellowshipping. T h e first problem surfaced in the fall of 1863 over property rights. David Hone had bought some land on credit but was restricted from taking possession of it until the spring of the following year. T h e former owner of the land later accused David of stealing fruit from trees that were not yet his. A church trial followed, and David was restricted from obtaining a share of the fruit. 6 He was not disfellowshipped at that time, but perhaps the incident was a prelude to deeper problems to come. Provo LDS Second Ward records list as persons disfellowshipped: "George Hone sen., Mary Hone J a n 2/71 [for] apostacy [sicT and "David Hone, April 2/72 disfellowshipped for signing anti-state petition." 7 David, with his immediate family and his parents, left the LDS church and in 1876 moved to Benjamin. T h e rest of the Hones (David's brothers and sisters and their families) also moved to Benjamin within four years. 8 Francis Peay was a young widower of twenty-three when he joined the LDS church in England in 1849. His mother, two brothers, and a sister, who had also joined the church, sailed to America in 1851. Francis came two years later, after earning enough money to make the voyage. While sailing to America in the spring of 1853 Francis married Eliza J a n e Baker, a young convert to the Mormon faith who, like Francis, was on her way to Utah. Upon arriving in Utah, Francis and Eliza made their home in Provo where all of their twelve children were born. 9 However, disagreements between Francis and church leaders led the Peay family to inactivity in the LDS church. T h e Provo Second Ward court trial records noted: Decision: T h a t Francis Peay be disfellowshipped from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for contempt of the Bishop of this ward and refusing to pay his meeting House Tax. Sept 13th/66. Francis Peay Dec. 19/69 disfellowshipped for apostacy [sic] in favor of Godbe and Harrison. 1 0
Provo Utah Second Ward records, early to 1910, LDS Church Genealogical Library, Salt Lake
Ibid. U.S. Census, 1880. "Lorraine R. Holman, "Biography of Francis Peay," MS in author's possession. '"Provo Utah Second Ward Records, early to 1910. 8
Benjamin Presbyterian Church
As a result of these actions only one of the twelve Peay children was baptized into the church while still a child. In 1878 the eldest son, Francis Alfred, married a Mormon girl, Annie Mills of Benjamin, and then moved to Benjamin to farm. T h o u g h not a member of the LDS church, Francis A. regularly attended ward meetings with his family.11 However, a dispute with the Mormon bishop, Benjamin F. Stewart, concerning water rights served to alienate him. On the three Sundays following the dispute Bishop Stewart refused to shake hands with Francis A. and told him that the Mormon church was not his church anymore. 12 T h e Thomas Herbert family also came to Utah from England after joining the LDS church in 1856. T h e Herberts had known the Hones in England, and the two families made the long journey to Utah together. Upon arriving in Utah the Herberts settled in Springville. In 1867 a son, T h o m a s , m a r r i e d his l o n g - t i m e sweetheart, Mary J a n e Hone (a sister to David). T h e couple settled in Springville but remained there only until the mid-1870s when they moved to Benjamin to farm. 13 After Thomas was appointed a U.S. deputy marshal for the area, he was required to prosecute Mormon polygamists. Rather than resign to support his church, Thomas decided to keep his job as deputy. Feeling betrayed, the Mormon leaders readily disfellowshipped him. 14 T h e Hones, Peays, and Herberts were strong willed and independent. Had they not been it is doubtful that they would have left their homes for America or, on arriving in America, struggled to reach Utah. Perhaps these very traits also led to conflicts with church leaders. Because the LDS church was concerned with both religious and civil affairs in Utah at the time, some Mormons became estranged from it after receiving unfavorable decisions from LDS bishops in church courts. T h e Hones, Peays, and Herberts were among this number. T h o u g h the three families were strong willed and independent, they were also deeply religious descendants of Christians and had been taught by their parents to be Christians. Their religious convictions led them to sacrifice their homes and belongings to make the difficult journey to Utah. Because the three families held strong "Interview with Kenneth Peay, Benjamin, Utah, March 7, 1982. Ibid. l3 Interview with Zerma Herbert, Springville, Utah, March 20, 1982. '"â€˘Interview with Viola Gabbitas, Provo, Utah, February 14, 1982. 12
Utah Historical Quarterly
David Hone was the prime mover in the establishment of a Presbyterian church in Benjamin.
religious beliefs, their separation from the LDS church soon caused them spiritual discomfort. Their pride kept them from returning to the Mormon church, but the spiritual emptiness they felt drove them to seek relief in some other Christian body. They had been Christians for too long simply to abandon their beliefs. When the Hones arrived in Benjamin there was no church for them to attend other than the LDS church. Therefore, they sought a new church in Payson, the neighboring town. Alice M. Peck, in a letter to the Church Review in 1895, reported that when the Payson mission opened in 1877 a few of the citizens of Benjamin participated in the Payson day school and Sunday school.15 This most likely included David Hone and members of his family, whose names appear in the Payson day school records that were kept beginning in 1885. David Hone was a zealous participant in the church; he sent five of his sons to the day school in Payson, and when the Payson Presbyterian church was organized on August 19, 1883, David was elected ruling elder. 16 He became the main force behind establishing the church in Benjamin. Rev. W. A. Hough, a minister at Payson, expressed pride in David and his family in a letter to the Board of Home Missions in 1888: Mr. H's family in Benjamin is a great help to us, and we often feel glad because of them. T h e Lord's smile is upon them. One of the sons is a 15 16
A. M. P., "Benjamin Presbyterian," Church Review (Salt Lake City), 1896, p. 49. F. M. Todd, "Payson Presbyterian," Church Review, 1896, p. 49.
Benjamin Presbyterian Church
member of our Church. He attended the academy at Springville last year, and says he is going this year on the "first day and stay every day of the year." He is a noble Christian young man, and is willing to take hold and help in prayer-meeting as well as with his hands. 17
It is difficult to determine when the Herberts and Peays began attending the Presbyterian church, though the Herberts were certainly involved by early 1887 and the Peays by early 1894, if not months or even years earlier. In any case, interest in the church increased during the late 1870s and early 1880s until in the summer of 1886 a Sunday school was organized in Benjamin; it was first held in the home of Caleb Hone, a brother of David, and later in the home of Thomas Herbert. 18 Each Sunday ministers and teachers from Payson went to assist the members in Benjamin, but many of the responsibilities of organization fell upon the members themselves. For over a year the Benjamin Presbyterians were without a commissioned teacher for their Sunday school. Only through the members' efforts was church held each week. T h o u g h they were without a commissioned minister and teachers, the Benjamin Presbyterians decided to move ahead and construct a church building on their own. They donated five hundred dollars (much of that from David Hone) and many hours in labor so that a small, one-room church building could be constructed. 19 Upon completing the building, the Benjamin members asked the Payson minister for help in acquiring a schoolteacher. T h e Utah Presbytery reported in the spring of 1888 that the "Benjamin citizens built a chapel and asked for a school teacher â€” we sent them Miss Grey [sic] last fall."20 Alice M. Peck, a later schoolteacher, wrote: "Our chapel was built mostly by the people of Benjamin. It is a small brick house, eighteen by twenty-eight. It will seat about forty-four. It has a bell, and is furnished with seats and an organ." 21 By establishing their own church in their own community the Hones, Peays, and Herberts were able to enjoy feelings of pride and accomplishment; once again they had become members of a group that filled important spiritual and social needs. Although the families were not outcasts, they did not maintain close relationships 17
W. A. Hough, "Payson, Utah," Church at Home and Abroad 4 (October 1888):338. A. M. P., "Benjamin, Presbyterian," p. 49. '"Ibid. 20 "The Mormon Missions of the Board of Home Missions," Church at Home and Abroad 3 (May 1880):445. 21 Alice M. Peck to Mrs. E.J. McVicker, February 18, 1893, Westminster College Archives, Salt Lake City. 18
Utah Historical Quarterly
with their Mormon neighbors. Because the three families had all experienced similar conflicts with Mormon church leaders, they naturally grouped together socially. T h e construction of the Presbyterian church strengthened their feelings of unity. Many letters written by the ministers at Payson to the Board of H o m e Missions mention the branch congregation of Benjamin favorably and with good reason. T h e Sunday school and day school increased steadily through the '80s and '90s, and in September 1893 an assistant teacher was appointed. T h e culminating event was the organization of the First Presbyterian Church of Benjamin on May 20, 1894. David Hone and Francis A. Peay were elected elders by the congregation. 22 Prior to the organizaton of the church the Benjamin members raised seven h u n d r e d dollars for the enlargement of their building. 23 Rev. S. E. Wishard expressed pride in establishing a church in such a small Mormon farming community. A most unusual spirit of inquiry has been abroad in our mission fields. T h e gospel of God's salvation has met these inquiries, and many precious ingatherings have taken place. About one h u n d r e d souls have been added to the n u m b e r of converts since January. O u r work has been greatly strengthened whenever these blessings have touched us. As one result we organized May 20 a church of nineteen members at Benjamin, in a rural district in a Mormon settlement. T h e people have pledged over five h u n d r e d dollars for the enlargement of our mission chapel at that place; and our work there, u n d e r the pastoral care of Rev. A. C. T o d d , and the co-operation of our efficient mission teachers, Misses Peck and Rowley, has taken on new and enlarged proportions. 2 4
T h e Presbyterian missionaries in Utah experienced little success, especially among conservative Mormon farmers. Proselytizing was more effective in larger towns with a greater percentage of nonMormons. Benjamin, predominantly Mormon from its founding, must have given Presbyterian missionaries some hope for similar successes within the state. T h e Benjamin church functioned as an organized body until the fall of 1916. During its thirty-year existence it influenced both Mormons and Presbyterians. However, its effect on Mormons was not spiritual but intellectual. T h e new church attracted Mormons to its day school and Sunday school because of the able teachers it employed. Before the turn of the century, when public education in ""Session Records of the First Presbyterian Church of Benjamin, Utah," May 20, 1894, Westminster College Archives. 23 A. M. P., "Benjamin, Presbyterian," p. 49. 24 Samuel Ellis Wishard, "God's Work in Utah," Church at Home and Abroad 16 (July 1894): 10-11.
Benjamin Presbyterian Church
Utah was very limited and inadequate, Mormon parents eagerly sent their children to the Presbyterian schools. At one time nearly eighty children attended day school at the Benjamin church. 25 T h e majority of those children came from active Mormon homes. Viola Gabbitas, who spent her childhood in Benjamin, stated that I used to go to the Presbyterian church too, to Sunday school once in a while for the simple reason that Marion Hone, this lady here, was a school teacher. She was well read, she was an educated woman, and she taught Sunday school. 26
Although many Mormon children attended both the day school and the Sunday school, they were not inclined to accept the Presbyterian faith. T h e Mormons were seeking education, not a new religion. As elsewhere in Utah, the Presbyterians in Benjamin only rarely brought people into their church through direct approaches of proselytizing. Reports occasionally showed that one or two people had entered the church through the efforts of the minister or a group of missionary leaders who had stopped in Benjamin for a few days; however, the session records show that most of these were members of the Hone and Peay families. Only one member of the Herbert family appears on the session records that were kept from the time the church was officially organized in 1894. Grandchildren of Thomas Herbert have stated that they are sure the family was Presbyterian but that they cannot remember the family ever going to church on a regular basis. However, Thomas Herbert's funeral was held in the Presbyterian church, and the family considered themselves to be Presbyterians. Naoma Herbert Bronley, a granddaughter of Thomas Herbert, said I know how I come to go there, cause I was little and I bawled cause I had to go there . . . and mother said to me, "Well now, you know, your Dad has to have his rights, that's where his people believe, so you'd better go." 27
Although the Herbert family actively participated in the Presbyterian church during its early existence in Benjamin, neither Thomas nor his sons and daughters remained closely affiliated with it. Of the thirty-four people whose names appear in the records of the Benjamin Presbyterian church only a small number are not members of the Hone or Peay families, or in some way related. A 25
A. M. P., "Benjamin, Presbyterian," p. 49. Interview with Viola Gabbitas. "Interview with Naoma Herbert Bronley, Spanish Fork, Utah, March 2, 1982. 2fi
Utah Historical Quarterly
In 1922 Benjamin celebrated the completion of a concrete road from Spanish Fork. Building on the right once housed David Hone's store.
breakdown of the members into groups shows fourteen Hones, nine Peays (and two in-laws), three schoolteachers (and a sister of one of the teachers), one Herbert, and four others. 28 T h e Hones and Peays who joined the church consisted mainly of members of David's and Francis A.'s families; the one Herbert who joined the church after 1894 was a daughter of Thomas. It should be noted that the Peay family members were very successful in converting their spouses to Presbyterianism and in one instance were able to influence in-laws to join the church. Eliza Mills, a sister of Francis A.'s wife, Annie, lived with the Peays for a number of years as a servant. Later, she and one of her daughters were baptized into the Benjamin church. All three of the teachers who served the Benjamin church during its thirty-year existence were commissioned by the Utah Presbytery to move to Benjamin to teach. T h e first teacher was Marion Gray, who, after graduating from the Presbyterian Salt Lake Collegiate Institute in 1887,29 taught day school and Sunday school 28
A list of the members can be found at the end of this article. ""Bulletin of the Salt Lake Collegiate Institute, 1901-1902," p. 26, Westminster College Archives.
Benjamin Presbyterian Church
in Benjamin for five years before marrying Alma Hone, one of David's sons.30 Her sister, Nettie Gray, who also graduated from the Collegiate Institute, 31 came to live with the family32 and was received into the church. T h e other two teachers who served in Benjamin, Alice Peck and Ellen Rowley, did not remain in the area after filling their teaching responsibilities. 33 T h e four remaining members of the church were an inconspicuous group of which little is known. They were not members of any prominent Mormon families in the community; moreover, they did not stay in Benjamin for long. Two requested and were granted letters of dismissal from the Benjamin church to the Payson Presbyterian church on the day they were received into the church. 34 One moved to Benjamin as a non-Mormon, bringing a letter of dismissal and recommendation from a Protestant church. 35 T h e Benjamin Presbyterian church began its decline in the years following the turn of the century. Like other Presbyterian churches in Utah the Benjamin church was outwardly weakened as a result of improvements made in the public school system of Utah. Mormons who had earlier sent their children to the superior Presbyterian schools readily transferred them to public schools that offered sound education free of Protestant bias. Thus, in Benjamin the enrollment of the Presbyterian day school steadily dropped. Of greater consequence to the church, the Hone and Peay families moved out of the area, married active Mormons (who converted them back to Mormonism), or simply lost interest in Presbyterianism. Remaining Presbyterian in Benjamin, Utah, was apparently too arduous a task for most of the second- and third-generation Hones and Peays. T h e October 22, 1916, session records of the Payson Presbyterian church state: "Transferred the following names from the Benjamin Presby Church to the Presb. Church of Payson with their consent and approval. Alma Hone, Mrs. Alma Hone, Mildred Hone, Arthur E. Peay, Mrs. Arthur E. Peay."36 With this transfer the Benjamin Presbyterian church closed its doors. 30 A. M. P., "Benjamin, Presbyterian," p. 49. "'"Bulletin," p. 27. 32 U.S. Census, 1900. 33 "Session Records of the First Presbyterian Church of Benjamin, Utah," March 5, 1897, J u n e 13, 1901. 3 Tbid., August 28, 1898. 35 Ibid., October 15, 1906. 36 "Session Records of the First Presbyterian Church of Payson, Utah," October 22, 1916, Utah State Historical Society, Salt Lake City.
Utah Historical Quarterly
From its beginning the Benjamin Presbyterian church served a very narrow segment of the population. T h e Hones, Peays, and Herberts brought the church to Benjamin and throughout its existence kept it functioning. T h e church existed for them and for the strong religious needs they felt after their alienation from the LDS church. T h e predominantly Mormon population of Benjamin was little affected by the Presbyterian church, though they received some benefit from the day school. T h e Mormons were staunch believers in their faith, content in striving to live their religion and not disposed to change their beliefs. Therefore, the Presbyterian church in Benjamin continued as a church solely for the Hones, Peays, and Herberts; its narrow base never did widen. In fact, it narrowed in the 1890s when the Herberts stopped attending services regularly. T h e zeal of the Hones and Peays kept the church thriving until the turn of the century, but thereafter all efforts seemed futile. Rather than continue the struggle in Benjamin, many Hones and Peays moved elsewhere to begin new lives. This was one sign that the religious need filled by the Benjamin Presbyterian church was beginning to wane. Another sign was manifest in the unwillingness of many second- and third-generation Hones and Peays to continue as Presbyterians. When the religious need filled by the church finally ended, so did the church. BENJAMIN PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH MEMBERS 37 Hone David Hone — David, whose first wife died in 1909, moved to California in 1911 where he lived with a second wife and then a third wife until his death in 1928. A granddaughter, Leila Wilkey, wrote the following about a visit to California: "While I was there I found that grandfather always attended the Presbyterian Church on Sunday morning and he and grandmother attended the Latter-day Saint Sacrament Meeting in the afternoon." Sarah Hone — wife of David, died in Benjamin in 1909. J o h n Hone — son of David, died in Benjamin in 1899. Alice Hone — wife of John, remained in Benjamin, not active in any church. Alma Hone — son of David, participated in Payson Presbyterian church, died in Benjamin in 1926. Marion Hone — wife of Alma, maiden name was Gray, schoolteacher, moved to California after her husband's death. 37 This list includes only the names on the session records. T h o u g h all the members received into the church should have been listed in the records it is very likely that some were not. Descendants of the Hones, Peays, and Herberts have mentioned numerous other members of their families (parents and grandparents) who attended the Presbyterian church. However, it is probable that they were never baptized or officially received into the church. This information was obtained from numerous sources that include many of those listed in the notes, LDS Family Group Sheet Records located in the LDS Church Genealogical Library, and interviews and telephone conversations with descendants of those listed in the session records.
Benjamin Presbyterian Church
Mildred L. H o n e — daughter of Alma, moved to California with mother. Robert David Hone — son of Alma, moved to California with mother. George A. H o n e — son of David, joined LDS church at age 46. Caleb H o n e — brother of David, after wife's death in 1904 remarried and moved to Oregon. Alice Hone — wife of Caleb, died in Benjamin in 1904. Alice Hone — daughter of Caleb, married Frank McCauley (the session records show that on October 15, 1906, Mr. and Mrs. Frank McCauley presented their child for baptism). McCauleys moved to I d a h o in 1911, Alice joined the LDS church at age 81. Sarah A. Mills — daughter of Caleb Hone, married Annie Peay's brother. Mary Hone — wife of George Hone, Sr., died in Benjamin in 1900. Peay Francis A. Peay — Francis A. moved to Provo in 1904 to take care of his mother after his father's death. He and his wife attended the Provo Community Church until their deaths. Annie Peay — wife of Francis A., died in Provo in 1937. Clara L. Peay — daughter of Francis A., moved to Provo after marrying in 1899. Nellie Peay — daughter of Francis A., left Benjamin after marrying in 1908, joined the LDS church at age 84. Albert Peay — son of Francis A., divorced, moved to Provo to live with parents about 1909, remarried in 1911, joined the LDS church at age 39. Annie Peay — wife of Albert, after divorce moved to Salem, joined LDS church after remarrying. Norma Lillian Peay — daughter of Albert, baptized at Benjamin Presbyterian church as a child, remained with her mother after divorce, was raised as a Mormon. A r t h u r Peay — brother of Francis A., moved to Payson in 1909, active in Payson Presbyterian church for many years. Mattie Peay — wife of Arthur, active in Payson Presbyterian church. Eliza Koontz — sister of Annie Peay. T h e Koontz family moved from Benjamin in the early 1920s. Sarah Ethel Koontz — daughter of Eliza. Other Alice M. Peck — schoolteacher, on March 4, 1897, was given a letter of dismissal to unite with a church in Iowa. Ellen Rowley — schoolteacher, left Benjamin by J u n e of 1901. Nettie Gray Bevan — sister to Marion Gray, moved to Nephi, Utah, in 1901 after marrying. Mrs. J. C. Davis (Mary J a n e Herbert) — daughter of T h o m a s Herbert. H e r husband died in 1898, and she remarried, joined LDS church at age 40. J. M. Henry — received into Benjamin Presbyterian church August 28, 1898, received letter of dismissal to Presbyterian church in Payson the same day. Jacob Crocksel — received into Benjamin Presbyterian church August 28, 1898, received letter of dismissal to Presbyterian church in Payson the same day. Lidiad Curefond — left Benjamin by J u n e of 1901, nothing futher is known. Myrtle Fitzgerald — received into Benjamin church by letter on October 15, 1906, nothing further is known.
The M-Factors in Tooele's History BY EUGENE E. CAMPBELL
TOD exhibit at the statefair correctly proclaimed "ordnance is big business, "for the military contributed greatly to Tooele's economy. USHS collections.
published an article entitled " T h e M-factor in American History" in which he attempted to identify a characteristic shared by most Americans that differentiated them from other people. He concluded that it was the migration factor â€” our excessive mobility â€” and made a strong case for his point of view.1 As I began a serious analysis and interpretation of Tooele's history, I was struck by the fact that George W. Pierson's M-factor was important in Tooele's story but also that there were a n u m b e r of other M-factors that were vital as well. These included the moun-
T W E N T Y YEARS AGO A PROMINENT HISTORIAN
Dr. Campbell is professor emeritus of history at Brigham Young University. He presented a version of this paper at the annual Statehood Day celebration sponsored by the Utah State Historical Society, January 4, 1983, at Tooele. 'George W. Pierson, "The M-Factor in American History," American Quarterly 14 (1962; supplement):275-89, reprinted in Michael McGiffert, The Character of Americans (Homewood, 111.: Dorsey Press, 1964), pp. 118-30.
tains, the Mormons, the miners, the migrants, and the military â€” each of which has played a vital role in the history and development of our region. One might also add Mexico, the recognized owner of the Tooele area until 1848, and the "melting pot" or "mixing bowl" image of the Americanization of our diverse population. T H E MOUNTAINS
T h e Tooele region, including both Tooele Valley and Rush Valley, is defined by the Oquirrh Mountains on the east and the Stansbury range on the west. Of course there are other ranges, but the bulk of the population has lived in the shadows of these two relatively small but important mountain chains. Although not as spectacular as the Wasatch and Uinta ranges, both the Oquirrhs and the Stansbury Mountains rise from the valley level of a r o u n d 4,000 feet to elevations in excess of 10,000 feet and in the case of Mount Deseret of the Stansburys, just over 11,000 feet. Both ranges contain beautiful canyons and supply the valleys with life-giving water. Journalist Jack G o o d m a n labeled the O q u i r r h s " T h e Shining Mountains," 2 which name could be applied to both the exterior appearance and the metallic treasures within, for the Oquirrhs contain one of the largest concentrations of mineral wealth in the world. Unfortunately, the northern part of the range has been d e n u d e d by smoke from the Tooele and Garfield smelters, but before they received the deadly fumes, the Oquirrhs were covered with trees and shrubs similar in nature and appearance to the Wasatch Mountains to the east and the Stansburys to the west. Some of my happiest memories of growing u p in Tooele have to do with recreational activities in these mountains. Boy Scout camps, father and son's outings, community celebrations, school picnics, as well as fishing trips, pine nut gatherings and chokecherry-picking expeditions all centered on the canyons of the O q u i r r h a n d Stansbury mountains. T h e hike to the glacier lake high up on Mount Deseret was an exciting e x p e r i e n c e , as was t h e climb u p to Butterfield Pass from Tooele's Middle Canyon where we could look down on what historian Leonard Arrington has called " T h e Greatest Hole on Earth" â€” the Bingham copper mine. Equally exciting and more dangerous was the hike through the water tunnel that conveyed precious Tooele water from Middle Canyon to Bingham City. 2 Jack Goodman, " T h e Shining Mountains: T h e Oquirrh Range," Utah Historical Quarterly 27 (1959):284-95.
Utah Historical Quarterly
T h e mountains provided streams that made it possible for the Mormon pioneers to exist in Tooele and Rush valleys and also contained the mineral wealth that attracted the miners and gave rise to the smelting industry. They also provided timber and grazing areas and contributed to the isolation which made the region attractive to the military in World War II. Certainly the mountains have played an important role in Tooele's history. T H E MORMONS
A year before the Mormon pioneers came to Utah, four companies of California-bound e m i g r a n t s a t t e m p t e d to take the Hastings Cutoff by traversing the Wasatch Mountains and skirting around the south end of the Great Salt Lake and on across Tooele's salt desert to Pilot Peak and then to Nevada's Humboldt River. T h e first three companies reached California successfully, but the illfated Donner party lost precious time and supplies crossing the Tooele salt flats and became snowbound in the Sierras. 3 Ironically, the time they lost blazing a trail through the Wasatch contributed to their tragic failure but enabled the Mormons to reach Salt Lake Valley with less difficulty, since they followed the Donner trail. Just three days after Brigham Young arrived in Salt Lake Valley he led a small exploring party, consisting of several apostles of the church and a few others, including Samuel Brannan (soon to be California's first millionaire), westward across the valley to Black Rock at the southern end of the Great Salt Lake. Orson Pratt, one of the apostles, wrote, We continued on about four miles further, when we reached a valley putting u p to the southward from the Lake. This valley we j u d g e d to be about 12 miles in diameter. On the south there was a small opening which we supposed might be a continuation of the valley or an opening into a plain beyond. 4
He was describing Tooele Valley. A few months later, in December 1847, his older brother, Apostle Parley P. Pratt, and a companion, after exploring Utah Lake and Utah Valley, rode westward into Cedar Valley and around the southern tip of the Oquirrhs into Rush Valley and then northward into Tooele and on to the shores of the
3 Grantsville has established a small museum containing artifacts of the Donner party found in the salt desert, and Dr. Walter M. Stookey of Tooele has published a book on the Donner tragedy called Fatal Decision. 4 "Journal History of the Church," July 27, 1847, LDS Church Library Archives.
Great Salt Lake, thus making the first Mormon exploration of the length of Tooele Valley. T h e Mormons were concerned with survival during the first two years in Salt Lake Valley, and only a few settlements were established outside the initial colony. Several valleys, including Tooele and Rush valleys, were used by the pioneers as grazing grounds for their cattle. By 1849 Brigham Young felt secure enough to begin his great colonizing program, and Tooele and Grantsville were chosen as logical places to establish early settlements. Tooele's settlement came in the fall of 1849 as a result of a call by Apostle E. T. Benson to a few pioneers to build a mill in the area as well as to care for his cattle. Cyrus and Judson Tolman and Phineas R. Wright were the mill builders and John Rowberry and Robert Skelton were in charge of the cattle. They built their settlement on the banks of the creek near the mouth of Settlement Canyon, and by the time they celebrated their first Christmas in the valley there were thirty-one people present. They followed the same pattern that characterized other Mormon settlements. They were organized into a branch of the church with John Rowberry as presiding elder and into a county with Rowberry as probate judge. Like many other Mormon colonizers they moved from their original settlement site to a better location. They had difficulty with the Indians, and finally, after the Walker War scare of 1853, they heeded Brigham Young's admonition to "fort up" and began to build a mud wall around the town but never completed it. They battled the crickets in 1850 and the grasshoppers in 1855. They built a church, a schoolhouse, a sawmill, and a grist mill, and they planted and harvested adequate crops of grain and vegetables. Tooele City was incorporated in 1853, and nearby Grantsville continued to grow and prosper, especially after 1853 when many families, including a number from Sweden, were sent to settle there. Both Tooele and Grantsville sent militiamen to defend the territory against the encroaching federal army in 1857, and both settlements were abandoned in the spring of 1858 when Brigham Young ordered all the people in the north to move south into Utah Valley as Johnston's Army moved into Salt Lake Valley. Happily, the Utah War was settled through diplomacy, and the Tooele County settlers were able to move back to their homes by the Fourth of July. In 1877 Mormon leaders took steps to make their organization more efficient. As part of this program the Tooele Stake was or-
Utah Historical Quarterly
ganized on J u n e 24, and Francis Marion Lyman of Fillmore, Utah, was called to be president. Six former branches in the Tooele region were organized as wards and a high council was chosen. Lyman's appointment was a recognition of the importance of Tooele Stake, since he was soon to be made an apostle and ultimately became president of the Q u o r u m of the Twelve. Following this pattern, the church leaders decided to send young Heber J. Grant to Tooele in 1880 to be stake president as a training experience before being named an apostle. My greatgrandfather was his first counselor and was given the task of "breaking him in." Grant, who served as president of the church from 1915 to 1945, always felt a debt of gratitude for the way he was treated during his two-year sojourn in Tooele. A n o t h e r future president of the Q u o r u m of the Twelve, George F. Richards, lived in Tooele on a farm east of the city. His son, the late LeGrand, also a general authority, recalled with pleasure his growing u p in Tooele. Tooele's Loren C. Dunn has been a president of the First Q u o r u m of Seventy for many years, and the presiding bishop's counselor Vaughn J. Featherstone lists Stockton as his place of birth, although he grew to manhood elsewhere. Grantsville's J. Rueben Clark, Jr., must be recognized as one of the most powerful influences in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints during the twentieth century. Serving as a counselor to Presidents Grant, Smith, and McKay, Clark's brilliant mind and powerful personality exerted a dominant force in the development of the church during that period. 5 MINING
T h e Mormon desire for isolation was threatened again during the Civil War when an army contingent of California Volunteers led by Col. Patrick E. Connor moved into Utah in 1862, ostensibly to protect overland mail and telegraph lines from Confederate forces and Indian depredations. This led to the third important M-factor in Tooele's history, mining. C o l o n e l (later G e n e r a l ) C o n n o r c a m e from S t o c k t o n , California, where he had been involved in mining enterprises. When he arrived in Utah he found that there was little need for his soldiers, 'Frank W. Fox's/. Reuben Clark: The Public Years (Provo, Ut.: Brigham Young University Press, 1980) and D. Michael Q u i n n ' s / . Reuben Clark: The Church Years (Provo, Ut.: Brigham Young University Press, 1983) provide scholarly studies of Clark's life before and after his call to the First Presidency of the LDS church.
Mercur firefighters in front of the new city hall, July 4, 1903. Mining towns like Mercur were important in Tooele's development. USHS collections.
although he did involve them in one of the worst Indian massacres in the nation's history near Bear River in January 1863. He soon discovered that the Wasatch and Oquirrh mountains showed signs of precious minerals; and believing that he could solve the "Mormon problem" without firing a shot by attracting enough non-Mormon miners into the territory to end Mormon political dominance, Connor encouraged his soldiers to search the nearby canyons for the precious metals by giving them extended leaves from military duties and furnishing them with picks, shovels, and other prospecting tools. T h e result was the location of numerous bodies of ore and the organization of Utah's first mining district in 1863. Connor must be acknowledged as the father of Utah's precious metal mining industry. Tooele was not only the beneficiary of these discoveries, but Connor chose to make Stockton the headquarters of his projected mining empire. Named Stockton after his California home town, Connor's plat of the projected center of Utah's mining industry reveals his grandiose dreams. It contained over 60 blocks with 20 lots in each block and could accommodate a population of 8,000 to
Utah Historical Quarterly
10,000 people. 6 With rich mines located at Sunshine, Mercur, West Dip, Ophir, Jacob City (near the head of Ophir and Dry canyons), and Stockton, Connor had good reason for such dreams. T h e Rush Valley Mining District was organized in J u n e 1864, embracing all of the western slope of the Oquirrhs. By the fall of 1865 over 500 mining claims were located in Rush Valley, most of them a few miles from Stockton, which by 1866 had 40 families and 400 inhabitants. 7 Connor persuaded friends to add their funds to his own substantial investments, resulting in the erection of a smelter near Stockton Lake in 1864. By the fall of 1864 there were eight smelters located in Stockton. Unfortunately for the investors, the technology for smelting the Stockton ores successfully was lacking; but Connor remained optimistic, writing that". . . the mines of Utah are equal to any west of the Missouri River, and only await the advent of capital to develop them." 8 Army-sponsored mining in the Tooele region ceased with the end of the Civil War, but Connor, after a year's service in the East, returned to Stockton to resume his mining activities and remained in Utah until his death in 1891." T h e beginning of commercial exploration of Utah's mines actually began after the completion of the transcontinental railroad in 1869. Promoters like Eli B. Kelsey, early mayor and religious leader of Tooele, but by 1869 a member of the Godbeite dissidents, encouraged the development of Tooele's mines and smelters, enlisting the aid of the Walker brothers and William Godbe, among others. Kelsey, on an eastern tour, was able to convince many wealthy merchants of the value of Utah's mines, resulting in the investment of approximately $100,000 in the fall of 1870.10
1 Brief History of Stockton, Utah (Stockton: Bicentennial History Committee, 1976), p. 97. This booklet also contains an account of the Honorine Mine just north of Stockton and the Combined Metals Reduction Plant at nearby Bauer. This was the largest mine in Rush Valley and furnished employment for many Tooele citizens between 1900 and 1973 when it was dismantled. It produced thousands of tons of silver-lead ore and also supplied water for the large fruit orchard at Bauer. 7 Leonard J. Arrington, "Abundance from the Earth: T h e Beginnings of Commerical Mining in Utah," Utah Historical Quarterly 31 (1963):203-4. Tbid., p. 204. "William Fox, "Patrick Edward Connor: Father of Utah Mining" (M.A. thesis, Brigham Young University, 1966), p. 76. '"Ibid., pp. 86-87. Kelsey had been a prominent citizen in the first years of Tooele's development. He took John Rowberry's place as leader of the Mormon church in Tooele when the latter was named presiding bishop over all the Tooele County settlements. Kelsey is also listed as Tooele's first mayor, although there is some question on this point. He is credited with bringing the first sheep into the county and was known as an excellent orchardist. Kelsey's ditch and Kelsey's Peak are local reminders of his influence.
T h e completion of the transcontinental railroad led to the establishment of Corinne on the Bear River and a smelter nearby. Tooele County ore was transported to Lake Point (or Clinton's) Beach and Black Rock where it was loaded onto steamships and carried across the Great Salt Lake and up the Bear River to the smelter near Corinne and the railroad junction. T h e venture was unsuccessful, but the beach resorts flourished, especially Garfield Beach west of Black Rock, which "boasted a magnificent pavilion, 165 by 62 feet, built entirely over the water about 400 feet from shore" with a connecting pier. 11 Ultimately, the Garfield Smelter was built to handle the Oquirrh ore. Ophir flourished in the 1870s, with mines producing $13 million in silver, lead, and zinc and over $300,000 in gold. T h e town had an estimated population of almost 6,000 people. 12 Mercur has experienced several periods of boom and bust and is now experiencing one of its most important booms. Originally known as Lewiston in 1870, it prospered for a few years but was practically deserted in 1880. A new discovery led to the rise of Mercur in 1890, and it prospered until a fire destroyed it in January 1896. (Interestingly, the residents had planned to incorporate the town on January 4, 1896, the same day that Utah gained statehood, but the fire forced them to change their plans.) Quickly rebuilt, the town boomed to an estimated 8,000 to 10,000 people by 1902 when "Mildred Allred Mercerâ€˘, ed.,History of Tooele County (Salt Lake City: Tooele County Daughters of Utah Pioneers, 1961), pp. 143-53, contains details of beach developments along the Tooele County shores of the Great Salt Lake. 12 Stephen L. Carr, The Historical Guide to Utah Ghost Towns (Salt Lake City: Western Epics, 1972), p. 21. Carr gives numerous details of Tooele County's mining towns, including excellent photographs.
Black Rock, Great Salt Lake, with Antelope Island in the distance. C. R. Savage photograph, USHS collections.
_-ÂŁ<SSU . *
Utah Historical Quarterly
another fire destroyed the entire business district. In 1913 gold extraction fell below the profit margin, and the town began to decline and was deserted by 1917. T h e Snyder and Son's Company tried to rejuvenate the mines in 1933, but the outbreak of World War II put an end to this attempt. 13 Today, once again, Mercur gold is being mined but in a different way and on a much larger scale. It can be detected only by an electron microscope and will be extracted at the rate of one ounce per ten tons of ore, as compared to one ounce per five tons at the turn of the century. But the Getty Oil Company expects to extract 85,000 to 100,000 ounces per year by using open pit mining methods and complex techniques of recovery. Success will be dependent, also, on the price of gold remaining at around $400 per ounce. 14 One of the most important results of the mining activity in the Oquirrhs as far as Tooele is concerned was the building of the International Smelting and Refining Company plant on a bench at the mouth of Carr's Fork five miles east of Tooele in 1910. It became an important source of employment in Tooele for the next sixty years until it was dismantled in the 1970s, being Utah's last copperlead and zinc smelter. Ore was brought over the mountains from Bingham by aerial (the high line) tramway, and the smelted product hauled to the railway depot two miles west of Tooele by the Tooele Valley Railway Company. Those who lived in Tooele during the 1920s and early 1930s will remember the engines of the T V (as the railway was called) puffing u p and down Vine Street several times day and night hauling workmen to and from the smelter and ore and supplies to and from the Warner depot, usually moving slowly enough that if a boy's timing was right he could catch a ride from the high school to the middle of town on the "cow catcher." Both the smelter and T V R R are gone now, but a dramatic new development in the mining story of Tooele is taking place in Carr's Fork near the site of the old smelter. T h e Anaconda Copper Company has developed a new mining and milling complex costing in excess of $200 million to exploit the rich deposits of copper, molybdenum, gold, and siver several thousand feet below the surface. Tragically, the falling price of copper has forced Anaconda to cease its operations at present, but hopefully it is only a temporary 13
Ibid., pp. 24-26. See also Douglas D. Alder, " T h e Ghost of Mercur," Utah Historical Quarterly 29 (1961):32-42, and Provo Herald, December 17, 1972. '"For details of the Getty Oil revival of Mercur see the Salt Lake Tribune, August 2, 1981, B14, and the Provo Herald, December 28, 1982.
set-back. Such large scale operations have brought a wide variety of different nationalities to Tooele, which leads to a discussion of the fourth major M-factor in Tooele's history, the migrant. MIGRANTS
T h e Mormon towns in Tooele County were settled by immigrants from the British Isles, the Scandinavian countries, France, Germany, Switzerland, Australia, Canada, and the States; but the mining and smelter towns attracted people from the Balkans, Italy, and the Mediterranean areas, including Greece, Asia Minor, and the Near East. Helen Z. Papanikolas has described their experience: T h e Mormon pioneers had taken months to cross the plains and to cut roads through forested mountains. T h e new immigrants travelled by boxcar and at times by railroad coach. . . . By the time they reached Utah, they had been hounded by officials, who assessed a head tax on them or jailed them for vagrancy while they looked for work, and been repulsed by Americans of all classes for their "foreign looks" and language. Fearful that the aliens would take their jobs, American workmen stalked them. For these immigrants, Utah was only a stop on a tedious journey out of poverty. They expected to remain in America only long enough to make sufficient money to return to their own countries to buy property, become shopkeepers, money lenders or merchants. . . . They had been impelled into Mormon country not by the grand vision of the pioneers, but by coincidence: by meeting a labor agent who was recruiting gangs for Utah mines, section gangs, mills, and smelters. 15 15 Helen Z. Papanikolas, ed., The Peoples of Utah (Salt Lake City: Utah State Historical Society, 1976), pp. 4-5.
Tooele Valley Railroad ran along Vine Street in Tooele, carrying smelter workers, ore, and supplies. USHS collections.
Utah Historical Quarterly
These were the migrants who came to Tooele in 1910 when the International Smelting and Refining Company announced it would build a smelter five miles from town. T h e Tooele Improvements Company boasted that Tooele would soon be "one of the principal smelter towns of the United States," and it was "confidently expected that the plant would ultimately become one of the largest smelters in the world." T h e management announced that only the highest class of labor would be employed and that "any man of moderate means will be able to own a home in Tooele. It will not be a company town," the authors of the brochure asserted, predicting that "Tooele City will have a population of 5000 within five years."16 It took more than five years to reach the population predicted, but over 500 people with names like Rinaldi, Pezel, Melinkovitch, Savich, Stepich, Penovitch, Poulas, de Simon, Jankovitch, Buzinis, Carbats, Ronkovitch, and Leonelli soon arrived in Tooele. They settled in Plat C, or New Town as it was called, and formed their own community with their own school, church, and culture, including a wide variety of languages. Unfortunately, the people of Utah shared "the nationwide view that the Balkan and Mediterranean immigrants were of inferior heredity." 17 Besides having to contend with prejudice and suspicion from the Mormons, these migrants brought Old World dissensions with them. In Tooele, older residents tended to think of the newcomers as a united community when actually they came from areas with longstanding antagonisms, such as the contentious peoples who were later to make up the nation of Yugoslovia â€” Slovenes, Croatians, Serbs, Bosnians, Herzegovinians, Dalmatians, and Montenegrins â€” all usually listed as Austrians but sharing the kind of hatreds that ultimately led to World War I.18 However, their location on the edge of Tooele and four miles from the smelter kept them from the fate of a company town, and their need for friends in an alien society helped them to forget their former enmities. There was little socializing between the "Newtowners" and the people of Tooele during the early years. T h e Roman Catholic church provided a center for the community, including an athletic program for boys. T h e Plat C school built at a cost of $10,000 undertook the task of "Americanizing" the 132 students who began l6
Tooele: The Ideal Smelter City of the World (1910), advertising brochure in author's possession. Papanikolas, Peoples of Utah, p. 5. 18 Ibid., pp. 5-6.
work under the tutelage of five teachers. 19 When some were ready for high school, a mingling of the youth of the two communities was inevitable. T h e "Newtowners" attended Tooele High but were not encouraged to participate in sports or other activities. Sterling R. Harris, former superintendent of county schools and highly successful Tooele High School football coach, was the person most responsible for breaking down prejudice. He remembers having to threaten to appeal to the State Board of Education in order to use such athletes as Joe Rinaldi, George Melinkovitch, and Dan Savich on his football squad. 20 With their aid Tooele High won state football championships in 1929 and 1930, which helped to break the ice and brought a sense of unity and pride to the community. Many will remember when the athlete known as Joe Rose was named to the all-state football team and had his picture in the Salt Lake papers, but his name was listed as Rinaldi rather than Rose! T h e family had been using the name Rose because it sounded more American than Rinaldi, but when Joe gained this important recognition they wanted the world to know their real name. With the decision to build the Tooele Ordnance Depot in 1942, a new wave of "outsiders" came to Tooele, including Mexicans, Japanese, German and Italian war prisoners, and blacks, presenting a new challenge to the people of Tooele that their past experience enabled them to meet with a minimum of difficulty. T H E MILITARY
Military developments had been a significant factor in Tooele's history but did not become dominant until 1942. Military men such as John C. Fremont, Howard Stansbury, John W. Gunnison, and J. H. Simpson participated in early explorations of Tooele County, but it was Lt. Col. Edward J. Steptoe who first established a military camp in the county in 1854. Steptoe came to Utah at the head of a military and civilian party of 375 men with the twofold assignment of apprehending the murderers of Captain Gunnison and seven members of his unit and studying the feasibility of a miltiary road through Utah Territory to California. Needing a place to quarter his troops and graze his animals, Steptoe chose Rush Valley and built tempo-
19 John A. Bevan, "Events in the Early History of Tooele City," p. 13, MS, A1374, Utah State Historical Society Library, Salt Lake City. ^"Interview with Sterling R. Harris, December 23, 1982. Confirmed in interviews with Wayne Hanks, December 23, 1982, and Ernest Rinaldi, January 4, 1983.
Utah Historical Quarterly
rary barracks near the shores of Stockton Lake. While stationed in Utah, Steptoe was asked by President Pierce to take Brigham Young's place as territorial governor. After studying the situation, he declined and led his troops on to California in the spring of 1855. My great-grandfather, H u g h S. Gowans, arrived in Utah with his wife and baby daughter in the summer of 1855 and was advised, with others, to go to Rush Valley where he could find a "ready-made apartment" in Steptoe's abandoned barracks. According to early Tooele historian J o h n A. Bevan, Soldier's Bridge and Soldiers Canyon received their names from the Steptoe incident. T h r e e years later, Johnston's Army came to Utah and began building Camp Floyd on the southeastern border of Tooele County at the time the citizens of Tooele and Grantsville were returning to their abandoned homes after the move south. Camp Floyd was not important in Tooele's history, but the Camp Floyd Mining District included many claims on the Tooele side of the Oquirrhs. T h e importance of Colonel Connor's troops on Tooele's development has already been described in discovering and developing the county's mining industry, but the military impact was minimal. Tooele County furnished men for the territorial militia (known as the Nauvoo Legion) and also contributed its share of men for the military during the Spanish-American War and World Wars I and II. During these latter conflicts, Tooele, like all of America, recognized the value of citizens from all different nationalities as they participated in the war efforts of the United States, including the important military installations that were established in Tooele County during World War II. Following the attack on Pearl Harbor, army investigators, anxious to expand the Ogden arsenal, selected a 25,000-acre tract southwest of Tooele as a site for a large ordnance depot, 21 and with that action in the spring of 1942 Tooele's history made a dramatic change. Tooele men, usually employed at the smelter, now had a chance for a different career; and many women found opportunities for rewarding work at good salaries. T h e influx of job-seekers made rental property valuable, and local merchants experienced a new wave of prosperity after a decade of depression. 22 21
LeonardJ. Arrington and Thomas G. Alexander, "They Kept'Em Depot, 1942-1962," Utah Historical Quarterly 31 (1963):7-8. T h e authors during this twenty-year period, before the Vietnam action had escalated played an important role in supplying U.S. troops fighting in Vietnam. 22 Tooele was especially hard hit during the depression. T h e county relief expenditures of all Utah counties, and Utah had the third highest
Rolling: T h e Tooele Army describe the role of T A D into a full-scale war. T A D had the highest per capita of all the states.
- . _ s ^ " * JH»--' USX**?®**-,:
^S^^C^; ;^» • :,"- ^L**MK *-aelfc,>
W^0^t0filtW*. 4 ^ i.** jjKEWCii".
JT^ndowr, 1940, in extreme western Tooele County. The air base here during World War II encompassed 3.5 million acres and was called "the world's largest." Farm Security Administration photograph, USHS collections.
In addition to building the ordnance depot, the Defense Department ordered the construction of a storage depot for Chemical Corps toxicants on land twenty miles south of Tooele in Rush Valley. Total area of the two depots was 44,092 acres. In the same year, the Army Chemical Warfare Service established the Dugway Proving Ground in Skull Valley on 841,000 acres (1,300 square miles) and built barracks and a village to house the soldiers and civilian employees and their families. Wendover Air Force Base was begun in 1940, prior to Pearl Harbor, as a result of Air Force program expansion. By late 1943 the base had a population of 17,500 military personnel and 2,000 civilian workers. Termed by historians "the world's largest military reserve," the base at the height of operations encompassed 3,500,000 acres and contained a city built of salt for bombing practice. Lifelike battleship targets and a mobile machine-gun range
Utah Historical Quarterly
were constructed as crews trained for bombing missions.23 After the war ended in 1945 it became known that Wendover had been the training site for the crew of the Enola Gay which dropped the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, bringing World War II to an abrupt end. T h e wisdom of this action has been a source of controversy ever since. It would be difficult to overestimate the impact that these huge military installations have had on Tooele's history, but one obvious result was the overnight increase of the population of Tooele from 5,000 to almost 15,000, with all the benefits and problems resulting from such a dramatic growth. Grantsville's population has multiplied four times since 1941, and other county towns, such as Stockton and Erda, have experienced considerable growth. T h e planned city of Stansbury Park, near the site of E. T. Benson's pioneer mill, has come into being as a direct result of this military activity. But if the Tooele towns have prospered as a result of the military, the nation has benefited from the reliable, dedicated, intelligent workers that Tooele County has furnished to man these installations and the many acts of kindness tendered to the "outsiders" who came to find work and a new home in Tooele. CONCLUSIONS
T h e mountains, the Mormons, the military, and some mines are still here, but the migrants have long since been accepted as permanent citizens; so perhaps it is time to consider another important M-factor in American history and Tooele's story â€” that of the "melting pot." This concept suggests that America has received peoples from most of the nations of the world and has "melted" them into a different race with distinctive characteristics called American. Widely accepted in the earlier part of the twentieth century, this idea has been challenged by some sociologists who see America as a mixing bowl rather than a melting pot and believe it should remain that way. In this concept the various nationalities are mixed together like the ingredients of a salad, which is more nutritious and appetizing than any single element, yet each ingredient retains its distinctive characteristic. Margaret Mead has described this process in a perceptive article entitled "We Are All Third Generation." 24 Asserting that we all have the characteristics of third23 Leonard J. Arrington and Thomas G. Alexander, " T h e World's Largest Military Reserve: Wendover Air Force Base, 1941-1963," Utah Historical Quarterly 31 (1963). 24 Margaret Mead, And Keep Your Powder Dry (1942), reprinted in McGiffert, The Character of Americans, pp. 131-41.
International Smelting & Refining plant east oJ Tooele employed many Tooele residents after 1910. Utah's last copper, lead, and zinc smelter, it was dismantled in the 1970s. USHS collections.
Utah Historical Quarterly
generation Americans, no matter how many actual generations our ancestors may have been here, Mead suggests the following pattern: T h e first-generation immigrants grew u p in a foreign land but felt the need to leave it, at least temporarily, to come to America which they perceived as a land of goodness, liberty, and plenty. They found, instead, rejection, exploitation, and menial jobs. When their sons grew u p these immigrants were torn between the desire to see them succeed in America (which meant that they must become more American) and the loyalty they felt toward the land of their birth. So they encouraged their children to succeed in the school that was Americanizing them but berated them for lack of respect for their parents and the land and culture they left. T h e second generation, children born in America of foreignborn parents, threw themselves with intensity into the American way of life; they ate, talked, and dressed American, rejecting half of their life to make the other half self-consistent and complete, and by and large they succeeded. "Almost miraculously, the sons of the Polish day laborer and the Italian fruit grower, the Finnish miner and the Russian garment worker [became] Americans." T h e third generation has been educated to believe that they have really arrived â€” they are genuine members of an exclusive club â€” America. Washington, Jefferson, and Lincoln have become their founding fathers, no matter what their ancestry might be. They expect to move upward, not because they are better than their parents but because they have better opportunities. They respect their parents' accomplishments, even if they are a bit old-fashioned; and because of their feeling of belonging, they have no need to hide their ancestry but can take pride in grandparents who had the courage to break with the Old World and help build America. They can learn the language of their forebears and appreciate their culture without diminishing their love for America. Many of us have witnessed much of what Mead has described here in Tooele â€” and the results have been good. Although descended from people of many different nations with different languages, religions, and customs, we have learned to live together with respect and dignity and have created a genuine community. H e r e in Tooele, then, we have experienced, in an unusual way, the M-factor in American history, plus the other factors that have made Tooele's history so rich and interesting.
In Memoriam: Andrew Karl Larson, 1899-1983
teacher, historian, poet, and storyteller, died July 23, 1983, leaving us a wealth of material with which to understand and interpret his beloved Dixie. As a teacher he helped many Hurricane high school students in history, English, and music. As coach of the debate team he inspired competitive excellence. In 1946 Karl was hired by Glenn Snow to be librarian and to teach English and history at Dixie College. After one year he moved to teaching history and English literature until his retirement in 1965. Writing occupied a good portion of Professor Larson's time after leaving high school teaching. His major works include: The Red Hills of November: A Pioneer Biography of Utah's Cotton Town, 1957; "/ Was Called to Dixie," the Virgin River Basin: Unique Experiences in Mormon Pioneering, 1961; Erastus Snow: The Life of a Missionary and Pioneer for the Early Mormon Church, 1971; Erastus Beman Snow, Son of the Dixie Cotton Mission and Son of Erastus Snow, the Apostle, 1973; The Education of a Second Generation Swede: An Autobiography, 1979. He, with his wife Katharine Miles Larson, edited the two volume Diary of Charles Lowell Walker, 1980. He authored articles and reviews too numerous to mention here. In recognition of his historical writings he was made a Fellow of the Utah State Historical Society in 1965. Nature, family, and love of life and land were the subjects of Karl's poetry. He expressed his feelings "in the dressed up language of verse" because, he said, they were his best feelings. A N D R E W KARL LARSON,
Let me in gentle peace put on my shroud and give me to the shadowed hills' embrace.
In 1976 I had the pleasure of conducting a lengthy oral history interview with Karl. It was soon after Katharine's death; feelings were still close to the surface, but his story, as he told it at that time, was filled with rich antecdotal asides. He told, as he does in his
Utah Historical Quarterly
autobiography, of the mules eating rocks at the St. T h o m a s mine on his first job. We laughed that more than two people were hired at Dixie when he retired. His family was very important; his wife Katharine and J u d i t h , their daughter, were his life. When he wrote, it was for them. When he painted, it was to please them. After reading his autobiography, one historian said, "his description of community life takes me back so clearly to my own Mormon upbringing it is like coming home." T h a n k s to Karl Larson, we have a brighter, clearer picture of life in Utah's Dixie and perhaps the rural West. J A Y M.
Utah State Historical Society
Book Reviews A Forty-niner in Utah with the Stansbury Exploration of Great Salt Lake: Letters and Journal oj John Hudson, 1848-50. Edited and introduction by BRIGHAM D. MADSEN. Utah, the Mormons, and the West Series, no. 11. (Salt Lake City: T a n n e r Trust Fund, University of Utah Library, 1981. Xviii 4- 227 pp. $22.50.) In the course of researching his b o o k The Great Salt Lake in t h e National Archives, Dale Morgan came upon J o h n Hudson's journal among the Howard Stansbury papers. Internal evidence in the diary indicated that Stansbury had employed Hudson to sketch the views of the Great Salt Lake; these sketches a p p e a r e d as lithographs in Stansbury's published report, An Expedition to the Valley of the Great Salt Lake. Morgan quoted liberally from Hudson's effervescent journal in his book, a n d he correctly speculated that this J o h n Hudson was the same J. Hudson listed on the rost e r of a C a l i f o r n i a - b o u n d goldseeking party known as the Colony Guard. But Morgan was unable to find any record that J o h n Hudson had ever lived in Utah. T h e University of Utah's recent acquisition of twenty Hudson letters, fourteen pencil sketches, and related documents has made it possible for editor Brigham Madsen to clear up the enigma of J o h n Hudson's life. In this carefully researched, attractively designed, and thoroughly annotated volume, Madsen has not only provided us with a biography of Hudson's short but eventful life, but he has also brought together Hudson's letters, j o u r n a l , and other relevant documents. A Forty-niner in Utah consists of five basic parts: an editorial
introduction; Hudson's letters to his family in England (1848-50); his journal of the Stansbury survey of Great Salt Lake; reproductions of his original pencil sketches of the O r e g o n Trail and Utah scenes; and a facsimile of the constitution of the Colony Guard. Young Hudson had arrived in New York City from England in August 1848, seasick yet optimistic and eager to p u r s u e his fortune in America. After a brief stint in his uncle's import business he joined the Colony Guard and headed overland for California, h o p i n g to b e c o m e "a real live California Golddigger." He became ill, however, and was forced to lay over in Utah during the winter of 1849-50. He converted to the Mormon faith and taught school briefly in Provo before accepting a job as draughtsman on Stansbury's 1850 survey of Great Salt Lake. After the survey was completed Hudson accepted a mission call to help establish the new community of Manti. He died there on December 14, 1850, never having fully regained his health. Hudson's literary and artistic legacy is important for several reasons. He was the first artist to sketch scenes of Great Salt Lake. His journal is of equal or superior quality to the manuscript journals of Howard Stansbury, J o h n W. Gunnison, and Albert Carrington.
292 It contains delightful prose and reveals the artist's eye in interpreting the Utah scene in 1850. Despite careful editing, some minor e r r o r s have crept into the text. Hudson arrived in New York City in August 1848, not in 1849 (p. xv). J o h n W. G u n n i s o n was m u r d e r e d on October 26, 1853, not on J u n e 23 (p.
Utah Historical Quarterly 194). T h e geologist who explored Great Salt Lake in the 1870s a n d 1880s was named Grove K. Gilbert, not Grover K. Gilbert (p. 124).
DAVID H. MILLER
Cameron University Lawton, Oklahoma
Mormon Thunder: A Documentary History of Jedediah Morgan Grant. By GENE A. SESSIONS. (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1982. Xviii 4- 413 pp. $16.95.) N o t w i t h s t a n d i n g the book's title (and the book is correctly titled), this is a biography of the Mormon missionary, mayor of Salt Lake City, counselor to B r i g h a m Y o u n g , a n d revivalistic preacher who launched the R e f o r m a t i o n with his " M o r m o n t h u n d e r . " As b i o g r a p h e r , Sessions does well in putting the story together, confining his attention to p r i m a r y sources. All this results in a worthy biography of one of Mormon history's lesser known but important figures. T h e biography makes contributions in the area of Grant's missionary endeavors, his relations with T h o m a s L. Kane and the creation of the famous three letters to the New York Herald, and the sermons leading u p to and d u r i n g the R e f o r m a t i o n of 1856. Readers will also be pleased to read contemporary accounts of the reactions to major events in Mormon history after 1833. T h e author has done well in bringing together an exhaustive collection of s o u r c e m a t e r i a l to p u t i n t o t h e f r a m e w o r k of a biography. But attitudes toward the book will diverge over the issue of design and the question of the g r e a t e r merit, whether in fine biographical writing or in the full printing of all one's source materials. At least three options are open to an author with regard to the employment of his source material, and of course there may be
all shades of usage in between. (1) He can tell the story in his own words, entirely, as it should be told to capture the spirit of the time and the full action of the central players, using only short quotations occasionally. This would be in the tradition of the great historians. (2) He can support his own full narrative, description, or analysis with occasional quotations, short or long, d e p e n d i n g upon the demand for proving or supporting a point. This is frequently the style of the thesis or dissertation and some articles. (3) He can quote source material entirely and pull it together with his own words (perhaps in imitation of Joseph Smith's "documentary" history or Brigham Young's manuscript history). For whatever reasons, Sessions chose the latter option, a n d however much we may appreciate having all the sermons and writings, the inclusion of so many long passages of the same type of material, in fine print, makes for dull, dull reading, especially w h e n o n e c a n n o t r e a d Sessions's essay alone a n d get the whole story, for essential points are allowed to remain in the long quotes w i t h o u t b e i n g p u l l e d o u t for emphasis. T h e documentation is extensive. In the twenty-one c h a p t e r s , by word count, an estimated 93,300 words are by J e d e d i a h M. G r a n t a n d 39,000 words are by the author (a ratio of
Book Reviews and Notices about 2.39 to 1). T h e n there are the 64 pages of the page-for-page reprint of the New York, 1852, pamphlet containing the three letters to the New York Herald (containing documentation on the Brandebury-Brocchus affair). T h e earlier chapters have a better balance of author and long quotations, but later chapters often begin with a fair balance and then move into about five pages of u n i n t e r r u p t e d quotation of a sermon, followed by a few lines by the author. T h o u g h the sermons hold a central place in the work, one looks in vain for a summary of their teaching, their p a t t e r n s , o r t h e d e v e l o p m e n t of t h o u g h t . O n e watches for t h e
293 b u i l d - u p to t h e l a u n c h i n g of t h e Reformation only to find that the author gives little preparation before and little evaluation after the event. T h e book, however, is measurably benefited by the inclusion of chapter 21, "Mormon T h u n d e r : An Analysis." T h e overriding concern for full documentation leads the a u t h o r to short us on backgrounds essential for full b i o g r a p h y . C o n c e n t r a t i o n on Grant as family man and preacher leaves little room for pictures of him otherwise occupied.
S. GEORGE ELLSWORTH
Utah State University
Material Culture Studies in America. Compiled and edited by T H O M A S J . SCHLERETH. (Nashville: American Association for State and Local History, 1982. Xviii 4-419 pp. Cloth, $22.95; paper, $15.00.) This anthology of previously published articles presents a broad representation of scholarly research in the collection, analysis, and interpretation of physical objects, or artifacts, r a n g i n g from t h e t r a d i t i o n a l architecture of houses and barns to the subtly changing forms of the CocaCola bottle. Schlereth, a professor of American studies at Notre Dame, has also issued a collection of essays called Artifacts and the American Past (Nashville: American Association for State and Local History, 1980), and he is now completing a study of the intellectual history of material-culture studies in America. In all of these w o r k s , he sets o u t to establish material-culture studies as more than a n o t h e r subdiscipline in the everproliferating structure of academe; instead, he treats material culture as a "field" within which such disciplines as cultural anthropology and art history are "subfields." Since material culture has generally been seen as a subfield contributing to studies in history, anthropology, folklore, and art history,
this collection c o n s t i t u t e s , in its rhetoric and in the span of its articles, a major attempt to correct material culture's Cinderella status as p o o r stepsister. Yet this radical assertion of material culture's preeminent status is largely a s s u m e d r a t h e r t h a n specifically argued. T h e volume's major divisions of theory, method, and practice are surr o u n d e d by Schlereth's lengthy and useful introduction to the history of the "field" and by his brief bibliographical essay, but nowhere is his assumptive model for material culture's place in American scholarly endeavor addressed. Only one of the essays, by William B. Hesseltine, questions the importance of material culture's potential contributions to historical inquiry; all the rest assume material culture's importance and relevance and in effect support Schlereth's assumption that the field is independent and self-justifying. T h e book's longest section, twelve essays a d d r e s s i n g specific problems of artifactual analysis, range from tombstone motifs
294 in New England to early photographs of Chicago, from folk architecture in the eastern United States to the forms of the service station. Such plenitude is a fascinating complement to the creativity and flexibility of scholars from many fields, but its helter-skelter variety in effect c o n t r o v e r t s the editor's portrayal of material culture as a field of inquiry on the brink of d i s c o v e r i n g its own r a t i o n a l e , theory, and method. More serious is the collection's utter absence of the illustrations that accompanied these essays when originally published. Schlereth asserts that the omission of graphics was "unavoidable" because of the difficulty of locating original illustrations and securing permissions for use (p. xv). Yet this decision is a serious deficiency for articles like K e n n e t h Ames's on Victorian hall furnishings and Glen Holt's on Chicago p h o t o g r a p h y , where illustrations served as examples for their analyses. Worse, several of the broadest, most important articles — Fred Kniffen and Henry Glassie on folk architecture, Glassie on folk art, David Pye on the requirements of design, and James Deetz and Edwin Dethlefsen on tombstone decorative patterns — used illustrations not just
Utah Historical Quarterly as decorative examples but as components integral to the text. In both cases, their absence here seriously hampers the reader's ability to respond fully to the essays. Because this anthology could clearly be useful for undergraduate and graduate classes in many disciplines, this deficiency is doubly troublesome, especially in light of the reader's need to visualize those artifacts that constitute the presumptive subject of the essays. Material Culture Studies in America remains marginally useful, especially in its assemblage of a number of fine essays from obscure journals and in Schlereth's competent survey of the many modes of analysis adopted by the authors. Taken as a whole, however, the book lacks the sustained rigor of the debate on the status of material-culture studies collected in Historical Archeology and the Importance of Material Things (Columbia, S.C.: Society for Historical Archeology, 1977), and it never satisfactorily resolves the problem of material culture's status nor the continuities — if any — of its practitioners' approaches.
University of Utah
Buckaroos in Paradise: Cowboy Life in Northern Nevada. By HOWARD W. MARSHALL and RICHARD E. AHLBORN. (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1981. Xvi 4- 96 pp. $15.95.) From the action photograph reproduced as the cover to the bibliography and photograph credits with which it concludes, this book is sound. More than that, it is a book that needed doing. T h e westerner perceives an eastern tilt to the way affairs are managed in this country; that the Library of C o n g r e s s t h r o u g h its Folklife Center and the Smithsonian through its Division of Community Life could collaborate in this remarkable study is a hopeful sign that the
American West that is not Sun Valley or Las Vegas can finally come to be identified a n d p e r h a p s even a p preciated. T h e book serves a dual purpose and is a p p r o p r i a t e l y divided into two parts. Pages one through forty-five — "Buckaroo: Views of a Western Way of Life" — are mostly expository and descriptive, with some narrative as is appropriate to make clear the who, when, and why of settlement and development of this area of northern
Book Reviews and Notices Nevada. Well illustrated with photographs and drawings, Howard W. Marshall's long essay clearly and effectively establishes the framework within which the folklife of Paradise Valley has developed. T h e second half is an exhibition catalogue for the 244 artifacts collected for the American Folklife Center's Paradise Valley Folklife Project. T h e artifacts photographed, identified, and catalogued by Richard E. Ahlborn are part of the material culture produced by that folklife. Thus, the book is a h a p p y w e d d i n g of c o n t e x t a n d product. Marshall calls his subject "a Western Way of Life." He does not call it "lifestyle" or "socio-economic and cultural overview of a mode of living." T h e reader can be grateful that sociological jargon has given way to American English that is clear, readable, and economically managed. Examples are easy to find: "The buckaroo life had undergone many changes since its nineteenth-century beginnings. Yet the object of attention is still cows. Methods of working cattle and dealing with the land are learned by practice, by watching and listening to older hands, and by imitating and varying accepted models" (p. 15). Not only is the prose clear, but it is also packed with information. T h e basic patterns of the American cattle industry originated in the nineteenth century. But as is true of all living cultural elements that may be collected and studied as folklore, these p a t t e r n s u n d e r g o dynamic variation. They evolve and survive. All of this is implied in the quoted material. Compare this information with a s t a t e m e n t from J o h n Greenway's Folklore of the Great West (Palo Alto, California: American West Publishing Company, 1969): " T h e era of the cowboy lasted less t h a n half the lifetime of a man. Not until 1870 had it recognizably begun; by 1895 it was all over, except for those marginal
295 survivors of every movement who exist only to give archeological testimony of dead cultures. In space, too, the range of the cowhand was restricted; only that narrow and desolate corridor running along the eastern slope of the Rocky Mountains knew the genuine working cowboy" (p. 179). Greenway's statement is, of c o u r s e , w r o n g , a n d Buckaroos in Paradise is a necessary correction. It is probably true that of all the vocations, only agriculture and animal husbandry can justifiably be called "a way of life." Madison Avenue has made a mockery of the expression by using it to sell everything from motorcycles to bowling shoes. But rightly understood, "way of life" means that those who live it are totally immersed in it, living their work but never finishing it and never reaching a point where vacations can be undertaken without profound feelings of guilt or anxiety over work unfinished. Robert Frost came close to defining it when he wrote: But yield who will to their separation, My object in living is to unite My avocation and my vocation As my two eyes make one in sight. There is very little about this book that is amiss. I would like to see more photographs of morphological and functional change in the artifacts. But that is an unfair objection, because the study was not undertaken to docum e n t such c h a n g e s . In e a s t e r n Oregon, which is part of the subregion to which Paradise Valley, Humboldt County, Nevada, belongs, certain dialect terms tend to be spelled differently: oreana, not oreanna, for a slick-ear, and mccarty, rather than mccardy, for a hair rope. But this is a matter of no real consequence since the spelling of dialect terms is always problematical. Rango, rodero, and cosinero(a) do not appear among vo-
296 c a b u l a r y i t e m s collected from Paradise Valley; they have been collected in eastern Oregon. Although most folklorists would agree that^wcAaroo derives from the Spanish vaquero there is a niggle of doubt, as Marshall indicates, for bukra, a Gullah dialect term for boss, might be the prototypal word, c a r r i e d by blacks from t h e South. Such a possibility exists; one can hear in eastern Oregon the words used together, as in the expression
Utah Historical Quarterly "He was the buckaroo boss" to identify the segundo or subforeman in charge of the riders. These slight reservations in no way compromise the fine study of an easily overlooked area of the American West, a study that should be of interest to everyone.
LOUIE W. ATTEBERY
College of Idaho Caldwell
A Passion for Freedom: The Life of Sharlot Hall. By MARGARET F. MAXWELL. (Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 1982. Xii + 234 pp. $17.50.) Although Sharlot Hall's name is closely associated with Arizona history, few residents know about this remarkable woman. A smattering of locals have heard of the Sharlot Hall Museum in Prescott; some may even know that she was once the territorial historian or that she wrote poetry for national publications. Behind all this, however, is the story of a creative frontier woman who not only played an important role in the preservation of Arizona's past but whose life was marred by a type of mental anguish common to rural American women. Margaret F. Maxwell, a librarian at the University of Arizona, has used this biography to serve the dual purpose of h i g h l i g h t i n g the life of a significant historical personality and delving into the intellectual struggle that creative women were forced to contend with during a time when a woman's place was in the home. T h e "passion for freedom" was Sharlot's attempt to free her spirit and live her own life. That she only partially succeeded tells much about the drudgery and mental suffering experienced by isolated ranch and farm women. Sharlot (1870-1943) was born into a Kansas farm family dominated by a bellicose a n d m o o d y f a t h e r . H e r mother, whom she adored, was a sensi-
tive woman whose every ambition was dulled by her husband's selfish demands. As Sharlot grew up, she vowed to avoid a similar fate by remaining unmarried. In 1881 her family moved to Arizona, ultimately settling on a r a n c h n e a r Prescott. By this time Sharlot had developed into a precocious young girl, reading avidly and expressing herself in writing. Her intellectual development and feminist ideas were stimulated by an association with f r e e - t h o u g h t c r u s a d e r Samuel Putman, who toured Arizona in 1895. Her involvement in this liberal cause whetted her creative interest and provided outlets for the publication of her poetry and prose. S h a r l o t ' s l i t e r a r y s t a t u r e significantly increased when she became a protege of famed southweste r n writer a n d p u b l i s h e r Charles Lummis. By the turn of the century she had become a regular contributor to such national magazines as Out West. Although she continued to reside on her parent's ranch, she received nationwide recognition as an authority on the Southwest. From 1909 to 1912 she served as the territory's official historian, collecting an enormous treasure of documents, artifacts, and oral histories. Sharlot's career might have continued its up-
Book Reviews and Notices ward course had it not been for the death of her mother and the need to care for an aging father. For a decade, u n d e r the pressure of family responsibility, the heartbroken woman withdrew from all creative activity. T h e author sees this hiatus as a common problem among intellectual women of the era who were frustrated by their assigned roles in society. S h a r l o t emerged from her cocoon in 1922 and from that time forward r e m a i n e d visible as one of Arizona's foremost historians. H e r last years were spent living in the old governor's mansion in Prescott, creating a m u s e u m dedicated to preserving Arizona's past. Margaret Maxwell has done a mas-
297 terful j o b of telling the intensely personal story of Sharlot's own work. However, the author's deep admiration for her subject occasionally permits some of Sharlot's less commendable actions to pass without sufficient c o m m e n t . T h e e d i t o r s h a v e also slipped-up by permitting a n u m b e r of factual errors to creep into the text. These are minor problems, however, and do not change the fact that this is an outstanding book.
ROBERT A. TRENNERT
Arizona State University Tempe
Nearby History: Exploring the Past around You. By DAVID A. KYVIG and MYRON A. MARTY. (Nashville: American Association for State and Local History, 1982. Xvi 4- 300 pp. $15.95.) During the past decade increasing interest has been generated toward the serious investigation of local history. Moving from the study of individual families into the realm of community, much of the resultant work has been found in articles or monographs. Likewise, guides on how to approach this subject in an effective m a n n e r have primarily been p u b lished as pamphlets or paperbound monographs. Admirable in their intent, the physical qualities of otherwise well-written guides simply could not stand up to extensive use without pages literally falling o u t . Nearby History: Exploring the Past around You provides the historian with the best of two worlds, being both well written a n d physically s t u r d y . Reasonably priced, well b o u n d , using a good quality paper and pleasing typeface, it is also a d e q u a t e l y ( t h o u g h n o t lavishly) illustrated. T h e physical qualities are important, for the contents will be referred to many times by the reader earnestly in pursuit of local history.
C o n s i s t i n g of a p r e f a c e , twelve chapters, and a series of appendices, this is one of the most lucid books within this topic area. T h e preface should be m a n d a t o r y r e a d i n g for every beginning historian â€” amateur or professional â€” and it would be worthy for experienced historians to read as well. T h e r e is both a very clear statement of purpose and a frank, open acknowledgment of the traditional prejudices between a m a t e u r and professional historians. T h e authors desire to assist in bridging this gap through this book. T h e first three chapters, read in conjunction, are essentially a basic p r i m e r of h i s t o r i o g r a p h y , an organizer of historical thought. Scan reading will fail to serve the reader, for many of the key t h o u g h t s are found within the paragraphs rather than in a "first sentence â€” topic sentence" format. T h e writing is concise, clear, and readily understandable to the novice. T h e bulk of the second chapter consists of questions of which historians need to be aware, arranged
298 topically. While some may fail to see the need for a chapter of unanswered questions, there is great value in this exercise in the training of the mind. T h e fourth through eleventh chapters are independent, topical resources for local h i s t o r i a n s . Each chapter can stand alone or be used in conjunction with any desired combination of o t h e r c h a p t e r s . Not intended to be totally comprehensive, each chapter covers the basics with an occasional expansion into some detailed areas of the topic. Valuable to beginning historians, these chapters will also provide more experienced seekers of the past an important yet compact refresher course. Graduate students in history or sociology would be well advised to read this book before beginning research on a thesis or dissertation relating to local groups or communities. Q u i t e c o n s i s t e n t in a p p r o a c h throughout the book, the authors appear to have indulged themselves in the twelfth and final chapter. T h e beginning historian, in particular, may find it somewhat vague. Basically, it is a combination of historical philosophy, a brief tracing of the development of local history in America, and an extensive list of resources. This may be initially overwhelming or even unclear to the novice but will grow in value as experience and perception are gained. Anyone who has read extensively in United States history will find many an "old friend" among the
Utah Historical Quarterly various titles listed. A series of appendices conclude the text. Contained within are examples of forms and agreements that local historians may be called u p o n to utilize. Also listed are the addresses of the various federal and state agencies available to the historian, such as the regional b r a n c h e s of the National Archives and state historical societies. For the beginning local historian, the contents of the appendices alone are worth the cost of the book. T h e strengths already outlined are supplemented by a bibliography at the end of each chapter. T h e book is also well indexed. T h e greatest annoyance is found in an attempt to make the chapters more interesting by including supplementary, illustrative written material. Unfortunately, this supplementary information is blocked in within the text. Identical in format to t h a t f o u n d in m a n y h i g h school textbooks, it is equally disruptive to the reader's train of thought. It would have been far better to have placed this usable and interesting material at the end of each chapter. But Nearby History: Exploring the Past around You is definitely a worthwhile investment and a tangible result, in part, of the sales of the bicentennial state histories.
MARLOWE C. ADKINS, JR.
Mountain Crest High School Hyrum
The Canyons of Grace. By LEVI S. PETERSON. (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1982. 135 pp. Cloth, $11.96; paper, $4.95.) In The Canyons of Grace Levi Peterson has presented a series of carefully drawn characters set in a variety of times and locales, but each story is a view of a central person encountering his o r h e r e t h i c a l / m o r a l / r e l i g i o u s existence. T h a t Professor Peterson's themes are religious is attested by the
titles of his stories: " T h e Confessions of Augustine," "Trinity," "Road to Damascus," " T h e Shriveprice," " T h e Christianizing of Coburn Heights," and " T h e Canyons of Grace." These are fast moving, even exciting stories. .Their themes are religious but most assuredly not didactic.
Book Reviews and Notices F r e m o n t D u n h a m tells in " T h e Confessions of Augustine" that he sees in his life parallels with the life of the patristic saint. He reminds us of Augustine's willful youth, of his love for his pagan mistress, and of the sacrifice A u g u s t i n e m a d e for the Christian life. T h e n Dunham tells his own story: He is a forty-two-year-old Mormon high priest living in Salt Lake City. He owns a lumber business, the profits of which he tithes; he keeps his life squarely in the middle of Mormon orthodoxy; and he vividly recalls and recounts the fornication of his youth. Dunham's journey into adulthood is difficult and uncommon only because he thinks about it. But because he examines his journey in his forties and also (he tells us) when he was making it, his moral dilemma and the consequences of his choice interest the reader as well as himself. Professor Peterson makes wide use of extended metaphors in "The Confessions of Augustine" and in each of the other stories. For instance, we find a very y o u n g F r e m o n t D u n h a m climbing a pear tree in a symbolic escape from an overbearing mother. Another elaborately developed symbol involves his attempt to escape from the strictures of Christian morality in a pantheistic worship of the power of the storm and the wilderness. This extensive use of metaphors may annoy the casual modern reader, but it weakens the narratives only occasionally when metaphors seem to have been included for their own sake. "Trinity" tells the sad, surrealistic story of the chance meeting of an elder and a "lady missionary" before a painting in the Louvre. Elder Jamie Bolander reveals the agony of his realization of his homosexuality. Sister Laura Greenhalgh has been driven mad by the weight of her sin. T h e question of reality, the terror of in-
299 sanity, and the power of grief make this story memorable. " R o a d to D a m a s c u s " takes a nineteenth-century Paul t h r o u g h a series of frightful epiphanies until his stubbornness is crushed and we expect him to become a shaft in the quiver of God. This story is a vivid portrayal of mountains, mineshafts, and moral anguish. As with earlier selections, the metaphors may get in the way. " T h e C h r i s t i a n i z i n g of C o b u r n Heights" is a h u m o r o u s and sympathetic story of a stake president who does mighty battle with one for whom he has pastoral charge whose perversity is nearly as powerful as the president's Christianity. " T h e Canyons of Grace" is clearly the best of the six fine stories and certainly worthy to lend its title to the collection. Here Professor Peterson's characters are most clearly and fully delineated, his landscapes most sensuously depicted, and his symbols most subtly (thus most powerfully) employed. Arabella Gurney's Faustian bargain and her confrontations with her sense of the divine, with her growing disbelief, and with a religious rape and its resolution are told with devastating precision. Professor Peterson's work reveals mastery of the storyteller's art of creating anticipation, excitement, and reality. His appreciation of visual and tactile effects clearly demonstrates itself. His stories realistically develop the one or two characters allowed by the genre. At times, however, the ornamented stucture of his prose distracts. In Professor Peterson's chosen dem e s n e of w e s t e r n / M o r m o n s h o r t fiction, The Canyons of Grace places him on an imposing height.
WILLIAM C. STRINGHAM
Utah Historical Quarterly
Colorado River Controversies. By ROBERT BREWSTER STANTON. (Reproduction of the original work published by Dodd, Mead & Co. in 1932; Boulder City, Nev.: Westwater Books, 1982. Xlviii + 261 p p . Paper, $12.95.) Excerpted from Robert Brewster Stanton's massive manuscript history of the Colorado River, edited by Literary Digest's J a m e s M. Chalfant, and published in 1932 at the expense of wealthy industrialist and river e x p l o r e r J u l i u s F. S t o n e , t h e first printing of Colorado River Controversies was a commercial disaster. Only 1,250 copies of the 2,500-copy press r u n were ever b o u n d , a n d even those quickly found their way to the remainder table. T h a t depression year was obviously not a good time to try to sell books, particularly one that examined at great length two seemingly esoteric questions of Colorado River history: p r o s p e c t o r J a m e s White's claim to have passed t h r o u g h t h e G r a n d Canyon on a log raft two years before Maj. J o h n Wesley Powell's first voyage, and the reasons for the dep a r t u r e of O r a m e l G. a n d Seneca Howland and William D u n n from the Powell party at Separation Rapid on August 28, 1869. T h e recent proliferation of river historians and of general interest in the river has at last vindicated Stone's j u d g m e n t , and a book that once sold for six or seven dollars is today a b a r g a i n at seventy-five. T h u s it is that we are fortunate to have this reprint of one of the great river books, even at this inflated paperback price. B e c a u s e of t h e scanty e v i d e n c e available, J a m e s White will always h a v e his s u p p o r t e r s , b u t since Stanton's devastating attack that support has seemed increasingly precious and u n p r o m i s i n g . After examining the d o c u m e n t a r y evidence Stanton observed that the reports of White's expedition did not square with even the most basic geographical facts of the Colorado River above the m o u t h of the G r a n d Canyon. H e concluded that White had simply been lost and
that the story of his passage t h r o u g h the G r a n d Canyon was a c o m p o u n d result of his own geographical ignorance and the overenthusiasm of those who h a d rescued him at Callville. S t a n t o n h a d t h e g o o d f o r t u n e to interview White himself in 1907, a transcript of which is included in this book. Before Stanton's withering crossexamination the J a m e s White theory quickly melted away, and the White supporters have yet to respond convincingly. So Stanton established the validity of Major Powell's claim to have been the first t h r o u g h the canyon. T h e r e is an i r o n y in t h i s , for Powell a n d Stanton hated each other with the repellant electricity of like charges: both were midwesterners, both were preachers' sons with a d e e p conviction of self-righteousness, both were possessed by the d e m o n s of ambition and scientific curiosity, a n d b o t h , curiously, w e r e physically d e f o r m e d : Powell lost his right a r m at Shiloh, Stanton most of the use of his left from infantile paralysis. T h e r e were other similarities as well, but suffice it to say that Stanton's prose, always p e n n e d in a white heat, b u r n s with a special intensity when he goes after what he identifies as Powell's autocracy and fabrications in the major's role in the Separation Rapid affair. Stanton's conclusion, based largely on his own knowledge of the river and s t a t e m e n t s w r i t t e n by William Hawkins and Jack S u m n e r many years after the fact, is that Powell's blustering a n d military inflexibility had caused d e e p hostilities within the p a r t y l o n g b e f o r e it r e a c h e d Separation Rapid and that it was J o h n Wesley Powell himself, r a t h e r than the terrors of the river, who drove the trio to decide u p o n an early departure.
Book Reviews and Notices A p p e n d i c e s by Otis R. " D o c k " Marston on the James White theory and Martin J. Anderson on the Separation Rapid affair are useful, for they call attention to sources that, for one reason or another, Stanton did not consult, and they correct some of Stanton's interpretive shortcoming. Both conclude with the observation that additional research needs to be undertaken, but neither suggests di-
301 rections in which that research ought to move. Unless new sources come to light â€” always a possibility, but an increasingly slim one at this point â€” this edition of Colorado River Controversies will remain the last word on both of these vexed questions.
Utah State Historical Society
Fifty Western Writers: A Bio-Bibliographical Sourcebook. Edited by FRED ERISMAN and RICHARD W. ETULAIN. (Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 1982. Xiv 4- 562 pp. $45.00.) This sourcebook is a valuable introduction to its declared n u m b e r of western authors and will unquestionably prove useful to scholars, teachers, editors, and general readers of western fiction and poetry. Its editors, Fred Erisman and Richard Etulain, are experienced, respected scholars. It is appropriate to mention here another recent work edited by Etulain, A Bibliographical Guide to the Study of Western American Literature (University of Nebraska Press, 1982), which lists books and articles on a variety of topics and on some 350 authors. T h e fifty essays in the present book are on the average ten pages long. They have been prepared by creditable scholars, many of whom are recognized authorities on the writers they treat. Each subdivides into an introduction, a biographical statement, a consideration of major themes, a survey of criticism, and a bibliography listing both works by the writer under consideration and books and articles about that writer. Although such a format does not allow for a definitive statement, it does provide for a highly useful orientation. T o illustrate the ample and sometimes intriguing information to be found in these essays, Delbert E. Wylder's t r e a t m e n t of E m e r s o n H o u g h will be c o n s i d e r e d h e r e .
Wylder is a well-known scholar in western l i t e r a t u r e who w r o t e a Steck-Vaughn pamphlet and a Twayne Series book on Hough. He o p e n s his essay by s h o w i n g t h a t Hough's friend Andy Adams looked down on H o u g h ' s c a t t l e - c o u n t r y fiction for failing to be authentic. However, Wylder establishes the thesis that Hough "made strong attempts to deal with the West authentically, but he was also driven by a desire for success, financial success." In the biographical section Wylder follows Hough from an Iowa boyhood into a career in the Southwest, first as an outdoor magazine editor and finally as a freelance author. Between 1897 when his first western book, The Story of the Cowboy, appeared and his death in 1923 Hough wrote more than 200 articles a n d stories for p o p u l a r magazines and some sixteen books. In the next section, Wylder emphasizes t h r e e major t h e m e s in Hough's work: the dominance of the Anglo-Saxon race, the greatness of America, and the conservation of wild e r n e s s . H o u g h d e v e l o p e d these themes with greatest financial success in his stories and articles rather than in his novels. His desire to write a novel of literary quality was realized to his own satisfaction in Heart's Desire (1905), which, though it was a finan-
302 cial failure, "remains Hough's only novel now in print and has long been considered a classic of southwestern literature." Wylder reiterates in his survey of the modest body of criticism that "though definitely a minor writer, Hough should be remembered for his work as western writer and conservationist." This is a sound evaluation of Hough's place in the canon of western letters and concludes a treatment which, considering its brevity, is nicely detailed. Erisman and Etulain are to be complimented for including as many writers as they have in their sourcebook; fifty is, after all, no small number. Nonetheless, it is likely that readers will grumble about their selection. They have appropriately included some ranking American authors with western connections: among others, Willa Cather, Bernard DeVoto, Frank Norris, Robinson Jeffers, and J o h n Steinbeck. T h e o d o r e Roethke, however, would seem to be inappropriately included, there being no indication in the essay about him of any connection with the West, thematic or otherwise. They have also justly included most of the writers of regional identity to whom scholars and critics have given the highest ranking â€” Walter Van T i l b u r g Clark, Vardis Fisher, A. B. Guthrie, Jr., Frederick Manfred, Larry McMurtry, Wallace Stegner, and others. Their selection of writers of lesser note has been m o r e p r o b l e m a t i c .
Utah Historical Quarterly They have included writers of a very local reputation like J o h n Graves, Elmer Kelton, and George R. Stewart while failing to include Richard Hugo, a northwestern poet for whom an impressive body of critical interpretation exists. They have included N. Scott Momaday but have neglected Leslie Silko and James Welch, Indian writers who in the minds of many readers equal Momaday. From the nineteenth c e n t u r y they have i n c l u d e d Bret H a r t e , J o a q u i n Miller, a n d Mary Hallock Foote but have left out Helen Hunt Jackson, Charles King, and Bill Nye. They have included such writers of formula westerns as Max Brand, Zane Grey, Ernest Haycox, and Louis L'Amour while neglecting William MacLeod Raine, B. M. Bower, Peter Field, and other writers of formula westerns whose p r o d u c t i v i t y a n d reputation equal those of the included writers. All of this underscores the limitations of this sourcebook. It is not a definitive overview of western letters, nor is it entirely suited for helping readers make distinctions of quality. However, these limitations should not be unduly emphasized. T h e sourcebook gives an impressive amount of useful, fair information and will be an excellent desk companion for readers of western literature.
LEVI S. PETERSON
Weber State College
Book Notices Kindred Saints: The Mormon Immigrant Heritage of Alvin and Kathryne Christenson. By WILLIAM G. HARTLEY. (Salt Lake City: Eden Hill, 1982. Xxi 4 530 pp. $20.00.)
reveals biases for which a biography intended for the general public would be criticized. Commendably, the author acknowledges these.
Given the great importance many Utahns attach to tracing their genealogy and, beyond that, to creating some sort of story of their ancestors' lives, it is probably safe to say that hundreds of family histories are presently in the process of being written. Many will be duplicated from typed copy; some will be printed; a few like Kindred Saints will be researched and written by a professional historian. T h e latter option is one that few families can afford. Nevertheless, there is no reason why a family historian of the most modest means cannot use this book as a model to produce a better product. The introduction and preface give family historians some important tips about using outside sources to flesh out the material found in diaries, letters, and reminiscences of family members: census data, tax records, property deeds, ship passenger lists, military records, and special historical studies. Once this material is well digested it needs to be organized into a readable historical narrative. Kindred Saints provides an exceptional model of such a narrative by creating a unified story out of many separate elements. This work was written, naturally, from a particular point of view and with an audience of family members in mind. To that extent it
Mister, You Got Yourself A Horse. Edited by ROGER L. WELSCH. (Lincoln:
University of N e b r a s k a Press, 1981. 207 pp. $14.95.) One need not be a horseman to appreciate and enjoy this collection of h o r s e - t r a d i n g tales. Selected by folklorist Welsch from the files of the Nebraska Federal Writers Project, the stories a r e w o n d e r f u l c h u n k s of Americana, full of sly rural humor and the folkways of our unhurried, unmechanized past. Welsch's introduction is not the least of the book's attractions. Without overanalyzing or overtheorizing, he provides just the right a m o u n t of context to enable motorized modern readers to understand the full import of the stories, and his account of the interviewing and transcribing techniques used by the collectors of the tales will be of interest to local historians and folklorists. Images and Conversations: Mexican Americans Recall a Southwestern Past. By PATRICIA PRECIADO MARTIN and LOUIS CARLOS BERNAL. ( T u c s o n :
University of Arizona Press, 1983. 110 p p . Cloth, $ 2 5 . 0 0 ; p a p e r , $12.50.) Thirteen men and women of the g r e a t e r T u c s o n a r e a talk a b o u t
304 families and friends, life in the barrios and on ranches, fiestas, hard work, and loving the land and losing it. Taken as a whole their reminiscences paint a vivid p i c t u r e of Hispanic American life in the early twentieth century. T h e wisdom of these elder citizens, most of them in their eighties, is provocative. A sample: "You know, when I think about my memories as a boy, the life of a child today seems sterile in c o m p a r i s o n . 5m chiste — without flavor. Everything children of today know, they get from the T V . It seems to me that they know very little of real life. It's sad, because everything is so spread out and disconnected now — these's no sense of community. People stay inside their houses. They don't seem to want to live close to anyone. It's as if people hate one another. Everyone wants to live on an acre — no one wants to have neighbors." T h e photographs are excellent. I-Mary, a Biography of Mary Austin. By AUGUSTA FINK. (Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 1983. X + 310 pp. $17.50.) T h e author has produced a firstrate biography of one of the West's fascinating literary figures. Austin's twenty-seven books and h u n d r e d s of short works r a n g e d from p o e t r y , drama, and novels to anthropology, folklore, and metaphysics. This engaging, highly readable biography presents a very clear picture of her u n i q u e creative m i n d a n d how it functioned. Austin's ability to become part of many diverse environments allowed her to derive intellectual stimulation from companionship with Paiute Indians, the bohemian circle at Carmel, California, and the literati of New York and London. Fink opens the doors to these different worlds and provides tantalyzing glimpses of dozens of Austin's contemporaries such
Utah Historical Quarterly as Jack L o n d o n , Lincoln Steffens, Sidney and Beatrice Webb, Mabel Dodge Luhan, and H. G. Wells. Touring Nevada: A Historic and Scenic Guide. By MARY ELLEN GLASS and A L GLASS. (Reno: University of Nevada
Press, 1983. X + 253 pp. Paper, $7.95.) If Utah's western neighbor has always seemed like a place to hurry through on the way to California, this handsomely printed guide may give travelers o t h e r ideas. Nevada has s o m e t h i n g u n u s u a l to offer t h e b i r d w a t c h e r (Ruby Lake National Wildlife Refuge), the gourmand (the best in authentic Basque food), history buffs (countless stage stops, old mining towns, etc.), outdoor lovers (Lakes Mead a n d T a h o e , W h e e l e r Peak Scenic Area, Ruby Mountains), and folks who enjoy museums, nightclub entertainment, and, of course, the glitter and noise of legal gambling. T h e guide gives the historical background of each section of the state and then outlines a variety of tours that can be taken from a major city or town in the area. T h e Glasses provide excellent information for driving on Nevada's back roads: exact mileage between reference points, availability of services, whether the road is safe for passenger cars, and what to see and why. Natural Resources in Colorado and Wyoming. E d i t e d by DUANE A. S M I T H . ( M a n h a t t a n , Kan.: Sunflower University Press, 1982. 71 pp. Paper, $9.95.) Published originally as the October 1982 issue of Journal of the West, s u p p l e m e n t e d by two articles, this large-format paperback focuses on coal, shale-oil, uranium, and other resources. It is by no means a definitive treatment of the subject.
UTAH STATE HISTORICAL SOCIETY D e p a r t m e n t of C o m m u n i t y a n d E c o n o m i c D e v e l o p m e n t Division of S t a t e H i s t o r y
BOARD OF STATE
MILTON C. ABRAMS. Logan, 1985 Chairman WAYNE K. HINTON, Cedar City, 1985 Vice-chairman MELVIN T. SMITH. Salt Lake City Secretary THOMAS G. ALEXANDER. Provo, 1987 PHILLIP A. BULLEN, Salt Lake City, 1987 J. ELDON DORMAN, Price, 1985 ELIZABETH GRIFFITH, Ogden, 1985 DEAN L. MAY. Salt Lake City, 1987 DAVIDS. MONSON, Lieutenant Governor/ Secretary of State, Ex officio WILLIAM D. OWENS, Salt Lake City, 1987 HELEN '/.. PAPANIKOLAS, Salt Lake City, 1985 AN AND A. YANG, Salt Lake City, 1985
ADMINISTRATION MELVIN I. SMITH.Director STANFORD J. LAYTON Managing Editor JAY M. HAYMOND,Librarian DAVID B. MADSEN,State Archaeologist A. KENT POWELL, Historic Presentation Research WILSON G. MARTIN,Historic Preservation Development PHILIP F. NOTARIANNI, Museum Services T h e Utah State Historical Society was organized in 1897 by public-spirited Utahns to collect, preserve, and publish Utah and related history. Today, under state sponsorship, the Society fulfills its obligations bv publishing the Utah Historical Quarterly and other historical materials; collecting historic Utah artifacts: locating, documenting, and preserving historic and prehistoric buildings and sites; and maintaining a specialized research library. Donations and gilts to the Society's programs, museum, or its library are encouraged, for only through such means can it live u p to its responsibility of preserving the record of Utah s past. This publication has been funded with the assistance of a matching grant-in-aid from the Department of the Interior, National Park Service, under provisions of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966 as amended. This program receives financial assistance for identification and preservation of historic properties under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 19/3. The U.S. Department of the Interior prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, or handicap in its federally assisted programs. If you believe you have been discriminated against in any program, activity, or facility as described above, or if you desire further information, please write lo: Office of Equal Opportunity, U.S. Department of the Interior, Washington, D.C. 20240.