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UTAH H I S T O R I C A L Q U A RT E R LY WINTER 2014

VOLUME 82

NUMBER 1


UTAH HISTORICAL QUARTERLY

(ISSN 0 042-143X) EDITORIAL STAFF BRAD WESTWOOD, Editor HOLLY GEORGE,

Managing Editor

ADVISORY BOARD OF EDITORS BRIAN Q. CANNON, Provo, 2016 CRAIG FULLER, Salt

Lake City, 2015 Lake City, 2015 ROBERT E. PARSON, Benson, 2013 W. PAUL REEVE, Salt Lake City, 2014 SUSAN SESSIONS RUGH, Provo, 2016 JOHN SILLITO, Ogden, 2013 GARY TOPPING, Salt Lake City, 2014 RONALD G. WATT, West Valley City, 2013 COLLEEN WHITLEY, Salt Lake City, 2015

LEE ANN KREUTZER, Salt

Utah Historical Quarterly was established in 1928 to publish articles, documents, and reviews contributing to knowledge of Utah history. The Quarterly is published four times a year by the Division of State History/Utah State Historical Society, 300 S. Rio Grande, Salt Lake City, Utah 84101. Phone (801) 245-7231 for membership and publication information. Members of the Society receive the Quarterly upon payment of the annual dues: individual, $30; institution, $40; student and senior citizen (age sixty-five or older), $25; business, $40; sustaining, $40; patron, $60; sponsor, $100. Manuscripts submitted for publication should be double-spaced with endnotes. We encourage authors to submit both a paper and an electronic version of the manuscript. For additional information, contact the managing editor or visit our website. Articles and book reviews represent the views of the authors and are not necessarily those of the Utah State Historical Society.

Find Utah Historical Quarterly online at history.utah.gov. Periodicals postage is paid at Salt Lake City, Utah. POSTMASTER: Send address change to Utah Historical Quarterly, 300 S. Rio Grande,

Salt Lake City, Utah 84101.


UTAH DIVSION OF STATE HISTORY UTAH STATE HISTORICAL SOCIETY

Department of Heritage and Arts BOARD OF STATE HISTORY MICHAEL W. HOMER, Salt

Lake City, 2014, Chair DINA WILLIAMS BLAES, Salt Lake City, 2017 SCOTT R. CHRISTENSEN, Salt Lake City, 2014 YVETTE DONOSSO, Sandy, 2015 MARIA GARCIAZ, Salt Lake City, 2015 DEANNE G. MATHENY, Lindon, 2017 ROBERT S. MCPHERSON, Blanding, 2015 STEVEN LLOYD OLSEN, Heber City, 2017 GREGORY C. THOMPSON, Salt Lake City, 2015 PATTY TIMBIMBOO-MADSEN, Plymouth, 2015 WESLEY ROBERT WHITE, Salt Lake City, 2017 ADMINISTRATION

BRAD WESTWOOD, Director

and State Historic Preservation Officer KRISTEN ROGERS-IVERSEN, Deputy Director

In 1897, public-spirited Utahns organized the Utah State Historical Society in order to expand public understanding of Utah’s past. Today, the Utah Division of State History administers the Society and, as part of its statutory obligations, publishes the Utah Historical Quarterly, which has collected and preserved Utah’s unique history since 1928. The Division also collects materials related to the history of Utah; assists communities, agencies, building owners, and consultants with state and federal processes regarding archaeological and historical resources; administers the ancient human remains program; makes historical resources available in a specialized research library; offers extensive online resources and grants; and assists in public policy and the promotion of Utah’s rich history. Please visit history.utah.gov for more information. The activity that is the subject of this journal has been financed in part with Federal funds from the National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior, and administer by the State Historic Preservation Office of Utah. The contents and opinions do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Department of the Interior or the Utah State Historic Preservation Office, nor does the mention of trade names or commercial products constitute endorsement or recommendation by the Department of the Interior or the Utah State Historic Preservation Office. This program receives Federal financial assistance for identification and protection of historic properties. Under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Age Discrimination Act o f 1975, as amended, the U.S. Department of the Interior prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, disability, or age 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 to: Office for Equal Opportunity, National Park Service, 849 C Street NW, Washington, D.C. 20240.


U TA H H I S T O R I C A L Q U A R T E R LY WINTER 2014

• VOLUME 82

• NUMBER 1

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IN THIS ISSUE

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Building in Hell: Conflict and Compromise between Engineers and Environmentalists along the Logan Canyon Highway, 1961-1995 By Clint Pumphrey

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All Hail to the President! Theodore Roosevelt Comes to Utah, May 29, 1903 By Michael S. Eldredge

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Howard Stansbury’s Expedition around the Great Salt Lake: An Examination of the Route and the Maps By Jesse G. Petersen

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When Salt Lake City Became Hollywood: The Premiere of Darryl F. Zanuck’s Brigham Young By James V. D’Arc, Ronald L. Fox, Photo Editor

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BOOK REVIEWS Will Bagley. With Golden Visions Bright Before Them: Trails to the Mining West 1849-1852. Reviewed by Tom Rea

J. Spencer Fluhman. “A Peculiar People”: Anti-Mormonism and the Making of Religion in Nineteenth-Century America. Reviewed by Polly Aird

William R. Swagerty. The Indianization of Lewis and Clark. Reviewed by Elise Boxer

Brandon S. Plewe, S. Kent Brown, Donald Q. Cannon, and Richard H. Jackson, eds. Mapping Mormonism: An Atlas of Latter-day Saint History Reviewed by Michael E. Christensen

Mary S. Melcher. Pregnancy, Motherhood, and Choice in Twentieth-Century Arizona. Reviewed by Heidi Orchard

W. C. Jameson. Butch Cassidy: Beyond the Grave. Reviewed by Joel Frandsen

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BOOK NOTICES

© COPYRIGHT 2014 UTAH STATE HISTORICAL SOCIETY


IN THIS ISSUE

V

olume eighty-two of Utah Historical Quarterly opens with three articles that bear witness to the importance of the land in the American West. Scenic beauty and physical difficulties are overarching aspects of life in this diverse, mostly arid section of the continent. As Wallace Stegner put it, “The West is a region of extraordinary variety within its abiding unity, and of an iron immutability beneath its surface of change. The most splendid part of the American habitat, it is also the most fragile.”1 How then, have humans interacted with this splendid, fragile place? This, of course, is a key question in the history of both Utah and the West. Our first article examines road development in Logan Canyon and a conflict that stretched from the 1960s to the 1990s. On one side were groups and individuals who wanted to preserve the aesthetics and ecology of the canyon; on the other, those who wanted a safer, faster highway through it. It was, in many ways, a classic contest about man’s relationship with the natural world, as

COVER: Linda Darnell and Tyrone Power, co-stars in Brigham Young, acknowledge paradegoers in downtown Salt Lake City, August 23, 1940. SALT LAKE CITY POLICE DEPARTMENT IN THIS ISSUE (ABOVE): The Logan, Hyde Park, and Smithfield Canal, near the mouth of Logan

Canyon, photographed in 1947. Utah State Historical Society. UTAH STATE HISTORICAL SOCIETY

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the people of the Cache Valley and government administrators struggled to decide what constituted the greater good: ease of transportation (and all the economic and safety benefits that went with it) or the protection of a lovely place. This article is also about change over time—throughout the course of the Logan Canyon debate, the attitudes of many northern Utahns toward the environment evolved, from mostly utilitarian to more open to preservation. Complex dealings with the land were hardly new to the late twentieth century, as our second article demonstrates. In 1903, Theodore Roosevelt traveled through the West, in part to promote his conservationist ideals. The conservation of natural resources fit neatly with the progressive ethic, as reformers hoped to mitigate the effects of laissez-faire capitalism and industrialization through well-informed government involvement. Accordingly, in Utah, Roosevelt delivered a major speech at the LDS Tabernacle in Salt Lake City, wherein he expounded on the need to wisely manage irrigation systems, grazing lands, forests, and other resources. (As this issue’s opening article notes, places such as the Cache Valley were suffering from the ill effects of overgrazing and deforestation by Roosevelt’s time.) Notably, Roosevelt paid homage to the pioneering irrigation efforts of Utahns, a testament to the warming relationship between Utah and the federal government. Half a century before Roosevelt delivered his speech at the tabernacle, another representative of the federal government made a trip to Utah that concerned the land as much as anything. Captain Howard Stansbury of the U.S. Army’s Topographical Corps led a surveying expedition around the Great Salt Lake in 1849. The details of this often arduous journey are preserved in a journal, an official report, and beautifully drawn maps—and yet, as our third article argues, these sources do not always agree with each other. Specifically, Jesse Petersen finds that significant discrepancies exist between Stansbury’s journal and report, on one hand, and his maps, on the other hand. Petersen’s examination of the Stansbury expedition also makes clear the difficulties experienced by that 1849 party: exploration was a key element in development and settlement of the American West by Euro-Americans, and it was far from easy. The final piece in this issue, a photographic essay, takes us from the shores of the Great Salt Lake in 1849 to a moment of pomp and glamour in the Salt Lake City of 1940. That August, the executives of Twentieth Century Fox opened a major film, Brigham Young, not in Hollywood, but in Utah—and Utahns responded with verve. For some Utahns, much of the excitement came from Darryl Zanuck’s sympathetic portrayal of the Latter-day Saint story. And perhaps it was more than a little thrilling for Utahns to entertain some of Hollywood’s brightest stars (no one less than Tyrone Power) that August evening, when seven sold-out theaters premiered the film.

1 Wallace Stegner, Where the Bluebird Sings to the Lemonade Springs: Living and Writing in the West (New York: Penguin Books, 1992), 57.

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BY CLINT PUMPHREY

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n September 13, 1960, readers of Logan, Utah’s Herald Journal awoke to the headline, “Blasts to Interrupt Logan Canyon Highway Traffic.” Crews planned to dynamite rock from the canyon walls for several days in an effort to straighten and widen U.S. Highway 89, which travels through the scenic gorge. The placement of the minor headline and accompanying four-paragraph story, tucked away on the lower left side of the newspaper’s front page, indicated how little the community was concerned about the project at the time. For most residents of the small Cache Valley town, nestled at the foot of the Bear River Range, the rumble of collapsing debris in the canyon was the sound of hard-earned progress. While this utilitarian mindset still prevailed among Cache Valley residents, some in the community began to adopt new attitudes toward the environment. Prior to the 1960s, the locals’ approach to environmental protection was “conservationist” at best, meaning that they only supported environmental regulation primarily intended to maximize resource use or protect private Crews perform cut and fill work property. Meanwhile, a growing segment of for the Logan Canyon Highway the national population began to espouse a near Beaver Mountain, 1939. Clint Pumphrey is the manuscript curator in the Special Collections and Archives division of Utah State University’s Merrill-Cazier Library.

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SPECIAL COLLECTIONS AND ARCHIVES, MERRILL-CAZIER LIBRARY, USU

Building in Hell: Conflict and Compromise between Engineers and Environmentalists along the Logan Canyon Highway, 1961-1995


LOGAN CANYON HIGHWAY

more aesthetic mindset. Represented by groups like the Wilderness Society and Sierra Club, these “preservationists” took the conservationists’ aim of responsible resource use to a new level, advocating the unconditional protection of certain natural landscapes and the plant and animal life that they supported. The first major victory for this “activist brand of conservation” that became known as “environmentalism” was the defeat of a proposed dam at Echo Park, Colorado, in the mid-1950s.1 In Cache Valley, the initial clash between the utilitarian goals of public works promoters and the preservationist ideals of environmentalists occurred several years later, in the 1960s, during a series of construction projects on the Logan Canyon highway. The two sides disagreed over the extent to which the canyon should be altered in order to accommodate what highway proponents termed “improvements”: straighter curves, wider shoulders, and passing lanes. This contentious debate raged on for twentyfive years, and in the process fundamentally changed the highway design and construction process in Cache Valley. The Logan Canyon highway controversy emerged in a region where residents have long experienced a close connection with the environment. Like much of the West, Cache Valley is one of the “frontiers of real or perceived abundance whose regional identities have eventually been shaped by the experience of emerging scarcity.”2 Early settlers initially praised the valley’s bounty upon their arrival in the 1850s, only to struggle with the effects of widespread overgrazing and deforestation by the end of the century. The creation of federal forest reserves in the early 1900s helped local residents adapt to this scarcity and implement better policies for resource utilization. After World War II, the growth of tourism among the middle class made the scenery of the valley and its adjacent canyons an important resource just as the timber and grazing range had been in the previous century. The perceived threat to the aesthetic abundance of the landscape and the delicate habitat it supported was an important motivation for those opposed to the Logan Canyon highway construction beginning in the 1960s. Among the earliest and most enthusiastic reports of Cache Valley’s abundance came from Mormon explorers sent north by Brigham Young in August 1847. They described “a most beautiful valley, having seen the most timber of any place explored. From 9 miles to 17 ½ miles from Camp are 12 Streams running thro a good country to the Salt Lake.”3 The valley was not permanently settled until April 1859, when Peter Maughan led a small 1 Hal K. Rothman, The Greening of a Nation? Environmentalism in the United States Since 1945 (Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, 1998), 48; Mark Harvey, A Symbol of Wilderness: Echo Park and the American Conservation Movement (Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 1994), xv. 2 William Cronon, “Landscapes of Abundance and Scarcity,” in The Oxford History of the American West, eds. Clyde A. Milner II, Carol A. O’Connor, and Martha Sandweiss (New York: Oxford University Press, 1994), 604. 3 Thomas Bullock, Journal, August 14, 1847, in The Pioneer Camp of the Saints, ed. Will Bagley (Logan: Utah State University Press, 2001), 256.

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group of Mormons to an outpost near present-day Wellsville named Maughan’s Fort. The early settler boasted of the valley’s bounty in an 1859 Deseret News article, calling it “the best watered valley I have ever seen in these mountains” with “a reasonable amount of grass land in the vicinity of each settlement” and “plenty of timber consisting chiefly of pine, maple and quackenasp.”4 Brigham Young added his praise in a speech given at Richmond on June 6, 1860: “No other valley in the territory is equal to this. This has been my opinion ever since I first saw the valley.”5 Thanks in part to these glowing accounts, the population of Cache County ballooned from about 100 families in 1859 to 18,139 residents by 1900, creating the scarcity that so often accompanied growth in the West. The rising demand for timber needed to construct buildings and heat homes led to extensive deforestation in areas like Temple Fork, Tabernacle Hollow, White Pine Hollow, Blacksmith Fork Canyon, Millville Canyon, Blind Hollow, Brush Canyon, Beaver Canyon, and many others. One estimate suggests that crews extracted one-half billion board feet of lumber from the mountains surrounding Cache Valley between 1870 and 1900. Widespread overgrazing further stressed the region; between 1890 and 1900, the number of cattle in Cache County increased from 10,637 to 24,007, and the number of sheep jumped from 5,262 to 85,817. Albert Potter, a former Arizona stockman sent by the United States Bureau of Forestry to survey the area and report on its condition, documented the damage caused by timber and grazing activities in his 1902 diary.6 His observations, which included descriptions of clear-cut canyons and range denuded by sheep herds, were validated by the opinion of George L. Swendsen, a hydraulic engineer at the Agricultural College of Utah. Potter noted that Swendsen Is opposed to grazing, thinks it should be prohibited for two years. Gave measurements of Logan River and Summit Creek showing that since deforestation and damage to range, floods have come down earlier in the spring and streams have almost gone dry later in season when water was most needed.7

Despite intense cooperation among Utah’s early Mormons, such evidence of scarcity in turn-of-the-century Cache Valley supports the assertion that they were unable to prevent widespread environmental degradation in their early settlements.8 4 Joel Edward Ricks, The Beginnings of Settlement in Cache Valley (Logan: Utah State Agricultural College, 1953), 17. 5 Ricks, Beginnings, 17. 6 After surveying the area in the summer of 1902, Potter estimated that the number of sheep grazing in Cache County was closer to 150,000, thanks to “tramp” sheep brought in from other counties to summer in the mountains surrounding the valley. 7 “Diary of Albert F. Potter: former associate chief of Forest Service: July 1, 1902–November 22, 1902,” July 18, 1902, Special Collections and Archives, Merrill-Cazier Library, Utah State University, Logan, Utah (hereafter USUSCA). 8 Ralph B. Roberts, “History, Cache National Forest, Volume No. 1,” unpublished typescript, Cache National Forest papers (unprocessed), USUSCA; Twelfth Census of the United States, 1900: Number and Total

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Because of problems associated with deforestation and overgrazing, local residents showed cautious support for a federal forest reserve in the mountains surrounding Cache Valley. While the idea of individual control was strong in Utah as in other parts of the West, competition for range and the deterioration of water quality were problems that many locals felt could only be solved through government intervention. Area livestock owners sought restrictions concerning transient herds that passed through Cache Valley and the surrounding mountains, which vied for already-stressed rangeland and caused cutthroat rivalries between herders.9 Other residents showed concern about water quality issues. Albert Potter, after meeting with citizens in favor of the forest reserve on July 3, 1902, noted that “they think the health of the town is endangered by stock dying near the stream and by the pollution of the water by the manure and the urine.”10 The following day, another supporter “said the sheep fouled the water and tramped the range up so that the amount of silt in the streams was much greater after a heavy rain than it was formerly.” 11 Interestingly, Potter wrote that the residents did not seem concerned about deforestation; rather, he observed “all evils being charged to stock.”12 With the support of the Logan city council and Mayor William Edwards, as well as U.S. congressman Joseph Howell of Utah’s first district, the federal government created the Logan Forest Reserve on May 29, 1903. While this could be considered Cache Valley’s first large-scale venture into conservation, the citizens’ reasons for protecting the forest showed the utilitarian mindset that influenced their actions.13 Much of the timber and grazing activity occurring in the mountains east of Logan was possible thanks to the construction of a road through Logan Canyon. The first mention of this undertaking was in the journal of Henry Ballard, a prominent early settler of Cache Valley. On February 23, 1862, he wrote, “Br. [Ezra Taft] Benson proposed that we open Logan Kanyon [sic] and A Committee was appointed to go and Explore it.”14 He and others began work just a few weeks later on March 17, clearing trees and large rocks to build what might best be described as a trail by today’s standards. Progress was slow and difficult. Ballard noted a significant setback on June

Value of Specified Domestic Animals on Farms and Ranges: Utah (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1902), 487; Albert F. Potter, photocopy of original diary, July 18, 1902, USUSCA; Dan L. Flores, “Zion in Eden: Phases of the Environmental History of Utah,” Environmental Review, 7, no. 4 (Winter 1983): 325–44. 9 Roberts, “History, Cache National Forest.” 10 “Diary of Albert F. Potter,” July 3, 1902, USUSCA. 11 “Diary of Albert F. Potter,” July 4, 1902, USUSCA. 12 “Diary of Albert F. Potter,” July 3, 1902, USUSCA. 13 Charles Peterson and Linda E. Speth, “A History of the Wasatch-Cache National Forest” (Logan: Utah State University, 1980), 43. 14 Henry Ballard, transcribed journal, February 23, 1862, in Joel E. Ricks, Joel E. Ricks Collection of Transcriptions (from Diaries and Journals of Pioneers Who Settled in Cache Valley) (Logan: Library of the Utah State Agricultural College, 1955).

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15: “it had been raining for two Days and then a Cloud Burst on the Mountain between the Green Kanyon and Logan Kanyon Part of the Water coming each way it washed all the Bridges away and all the Dug ways in Logan Kanyon that we had just made this Spring.”15 The Utah territorial legislature formalized the Logan Canyon road construction effort when it approved the incorporation of the Logan Cañon Road Company on January 19, 1866. The act assigned William Hyde, Thomas E. Ricks, William Budge, George Ferrel, and Thomas Tarbitt with the task of organizing the company to construct and maintain a road from Logan to the Rich County line. To accomplish this undertaking, the legislature gave the company the power to erect a toll gate, and on March 5, 1867, the Cache County government set the toll at a maximum of one dollar for a four-horse team and seventy-five cents for one pair of horses.16 The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, under the direction of Brigham Young, was a strong proponent of Logan Canyon road construction. Young wanted to expand settlement of the Bear Lake region, and in a June 24, 1869, address to Logan residents, he “spoke upon the subject of the work of wisdom and cooperation and called upon us to open Logan Kanyon through to Bear Lake and put up the telegraph line through the Kanyon to Bear Lake Valley.”17 On October 25 of that year, Henry Ballard reported that he, Peter Maughan, and a crew of 270 men had completed the road to Ricks Spring. Meanwhile, Bear Lake residents worked to open the road from the eastern end. They initially constructed a route that originated in St. Charles, Idaho, and wound southwest through the mountains to Logan Canyon. Apparently, this road was not yet complete on August 24, 1870, when William Budge, of Paris, Idaho, reported to the Deseret News: “As soon as the harvesting is over, the people of Bear Lake calculate to go to in earnest and construct their portion of the Logan Kanyon road, connecting Rich and Cache counties.”18 However, a letter to the editor of the paper dated January 31, 1871, suggested that they had finished the route, noting, “Cache Valley is not far distant from St. Charles, via the Logan road.”19 By 1880, workers forged an alternate route that traveled west from Garden City and connected with the original road at Beaver Creek, following a course similar to present-day U.S. Highway 89.20 In addition to its role as an important connection between Logan and the Bear Lake Valley, the Logan Canyon road served a number of other 15

Ballard, transcribed journal, June 15, 1862. Acts, Resolutions and Memorials, Passed at the Several Annual Sessions of the Legislative Assembly of the Territory of Utah (Salt Lake City: Henry McEwan, 1866), 218–19; County Book A, 1857–1878, 979.212 C113, USUSCA. 17 Ballard, transcribed journal, June 24, 1869. 18 Deseret News, August 24, 1870. 19 Deseret News, February 8, 1871. 20 Leonard Arrington, Charles C. Rich, Mormon General and Western Frontiersman (Provo: Brigham Young University Press, 1974), 274. 16

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purposes in the latter half of the nineteenth centur y. In 1877, builders began traveling up the road to harvest timber from Temple Fork, a side canyon of the right hand fork of the Logan River, to build the Logan LDS temple. To pay for repairs necessitated by increased use, the Logan Cañon Road Company set up four toll gates along the route by August 1880, each charg- The Logan Canyon Highway, from ing twenty cents for passage. Additional traffic Logan to Garden City. came in the 1890s when mining discoveries at places such as Devil’s Gate, Amazon Mine, and Cache Mammoth created a brief flurry of mineral extraction in Logan Canyon. Though traffic between Logan and Bear Lake increased, travel on the road was not necessarily easy. Logan’s newspaper, the Journal, printed an editorial on September 3, 1892, describing the road as “hardly passable. Here and there huge bolders [sic] adorn the drive way, while deep mudholes and dangerous washouts render a ride by that route somewhat exciting.” The author implored the Cache County government to make the repairs needed to encourage trade with the agricultural and mining interests in the Bear Lake area. A week later the county court made the canyon route a county road and approved $500 for immediate repairs. Logan City also helped pay for maintenance in the ensuing decades, as evidenced by a November 23, 1903, agreement between the county and Logan’s mayor, Lorenzo Hansen, that required the city to pay “one-half cost repairing Logan Canon [sic] Road.”21 By 1913, support for a state road connecting Cache and Rich counties grew among government officials and prominent citizens of both regions. The idea was particularly popular with the Logan Commercial-Boosters Club, which passed a resolution endorsing legislation to fund the project on February 19, in the hope that the new road would become a popular route for the increasing number of automobile tourists driving from Salt Lake City and Ogden to vacation at Bear Lake. These groups, together with the Utah State Road Commission, then chose which of the existing routes 21 Ballard, transcribed diary, October 25, 1869; F. Ross Peterson, A History of Cache County (Salt Lake City: Utah State Historical Society and Cache County Commission, 1997), 181–84; Journal (Logan, UT), September 10, 1892; County of Cache to Logan, Utah, February 12, 1904, Cache County Records, box 8, fd. 23, USUSCA.

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UTAH HISTORICAL QUARTERLY

to Bear Lake the new road would follow: the one up the left hand fork of the Logan River to Garden City or another up the right hand fork of the Logan River to Meadowville.22 Officials ultimately settled on the former option, designating it as a state road in 1914 and ensuring its place today as the main thoroughfare from Logan to Bear Lake.23 The first round of construction on the “Cache–Rich” or “Logan– Garden City” road began in 1919. Because it was considered a “forest road project,” the United States Bureau of Public Roads supervised the work but shared the cost with the Utah State Road Commission. 24 Crews finished construction, which included grading and widening the earthen road as well as installing new culverts and bridges, by 1922 at a total cost of $151,788.75.25 After these modifications and several years of annual maintenance, the Utah State Road Commission described the thoroughfare as an “improved road generally good in all weather” in 1930.26 On December 11, 1925, the Logan Chamber of Commerce (formerly known as the Commercial-Boosters Club) Roads Committee moved to examine the cost of “surfacing and repairing certain places in Logan Canyon,” signaling its desire for further construction on the road. This wish became a reality in the 1930s and early 1940s, when the state and federal governments again collaborated to update the Logan Canyon road, this time through a series of fifteen building projects that cost a combined total of $900,000.27 Segment by segment, crews first laid a gravel base for the road and then paved it with a light-duty mixed bituminous surface. Gravelling took place between 1930 and 1939, while paving commenced in 1933 and concluded in 1941. With most of the work complete, the American Association of State Highway Officials designated the Logan

22 Formed in 1909, the Utah State Road Commission created the Utah State Department of Highways in 1959 to assist in the planning and construction of roads throughout the state. Effective July 1, 1975, the newly formed Transportation Commission and Utah Department of Transportation absorbed the responsibilities of these agencies. 23 Commercial-Boosters Club Minutes, September 19, 1913, October 13, 1915, Series I, box 3, fd. 1, Cache Chamber of Commerce Papers, COLL MSS 293, USUSCA; State Road Commission, Third Biennial Report: 1913 and 1914 (Salt Lake City: Arrow Press, 1915), 77. 24 The Bureau of Public Roads was first created as the Office of Road Inquiry in 1893. Housed under the Department of Agriculture, it was known successively as the Office of Public Road Inquiries, the Office of Public Roads, and the Office of Public Roads and Rural Engineering before assuming the name Bureau of Public Roads in 1918. In 1939, the bureau was absorbed into the Federal Works Agency and became known as the Public Roads Administration. Transferred to the Department of Commerce in 1949, it was again referred to as the Bureau of Public Roads. Beginning in 1967 the bureau briefly operated under the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) before its functions were completely absorbed by the FHWA on August 10, 1970. “Records of the Bureau of Public Roads,” National Archives, accessed October 15, 2013, http://www.archives.gov/research/guide-fed-records/groups/030.html. 25 Federal funds supplied $79,468.75 of the cost; $72,320.00 came from the state. 26 State Road Commission, Sixth Biennial Report: 1919–1920 (Kaysville, UT: Inland Printing, n.d.), 60; State Road Commission, Seventh Biennial Report: 1921–1922 (Salt Lake City: Arrow Press, n.d.), 47, 77, 103; State Road Commission, Eleventh Biennial Report: 1929–1930 (n.p., n.d.), rear map insert. 27 “Special Meeting of Roads Committee,” December 11, 1925, Series I, box 3, fd. 4, Cache Chamber of Commerce Papers, COLL MSS 293, USUSCA.

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Canyon road as a part of U.S. Highway 89 during their annual convention in Dallas, Texas, in December 1938.28 By the winter of 1940–1941, crews used plows to keep the road open year-round for the first time. These developments, together with the construction projects that made them possible, facilitated a significant increase in traffic. Usage increased from 66 vehicles per day in 1929–1930 to 821 in 1940.29 While construction on the Logan Canyon highway proceeded without resistance throughout the 1930s and 1940s, road work in such environmentally sensitive areas would face increased opposition in the second half of the twentieth century. Such preservationist sentiment was rooted in three broad changes to outdoor recreation that occurred between the end of World War I and the beginning of World War II: the proliferation of the automobile, an increased emphasis on consumerism, and the willingness of governments to fund highway projects. These developments certainly gave Americans a greater appreciation for nature, but they also made it more difficult for tourists to find the pristine landscapes and solitude they often sought. For this reason the concept of wilderness and other preservationist ideals were “more a response to than a product of the ways in which Americans were coming to know nature through leisure during the interwar years.”30 Each of these changes in outdoor recreation was present in northern Utah during the interwar period. The number of vehicle registrations in the state rose dramatically, from 32,273 in 1918 to 150,493 in 1941. Consumerism among outdoor enthusiasts was alive and well in Logan, which, by 1941, boasted four tourist courts and a commercial ski area in the Sinks area of nearby Logan Canyon.31 Finally, by working cooperatively to pave the Logan Canyon highway, both the state and federal governments indicated their commitment to fund highway projects. It was this continued willingness to expand and realign this road to accommodate greater 28 The Utah and Idaho road commissions had a long-standing dispute with the Wyoming commission over the routing of U.S. Highway 89 between Provo and Yellowstone National Park. According to the Salt Lake Tribune, Utah and Idaho’s commissions wanted the highway to travel from Provo to Salt Lake City, Ogden, Brigham City, Logan, Garden City, Montpelier, Star Valley, and the Grand Canyon of the Snake River to Yellowstone. Wyoming’s commission preferred that the route travel from Provo to Heber, Coalville, Echo Junction, Evanston, Kemmerer, and Big Piney to Yellowstone. When the American Association of State Highway Officials designated the former route as U.S. Highway 89, they labeled the latter route as U.S. Highway 189. Salt Lake Tribune, December 13, 1938. 29 Salt Lake Tribune, December 13, 1938; Federal Works Agency, Public Road Administration, “Plans for Proposed Project 1-A10,” 1947, located at the Utah Department of Transportation Region One office, Ogden, Utah (hereafter UDOT); State Road Commission, Seventeenth Biennial Report: 1941–1942 (n.p., n.d.), 65, 145; State Road Commission, Twelfth Biennial Report: 1931–1932 (Salt Lake City: Arrow Press, n.d.), 197; State Road Commission, Sixteenth Biennial Report: 1939–1940 (n.p., n.d.), 190. 30 Paul S. Sutter, Driven Wild: How the Fight against Automobiles Launched the Modern Wilderness Movement (Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2002), 20. 31 United States Department of Commerce, Statistical Abstract of the United States (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1921), 355; United States Department of Commerce, Statistical Abstract of the United States (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1942), 472; Logan City and Cache County Directory, 1939–1940 (Salt Lake City: R. L. Polk, 1939); Logan (UT) Herald Journal, January 17, 1941.

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numbers of tourists and outdoor enthusiasts that drew the initial ire of Cache Valley environmentalists in the 1960s. The Utah State Department of Highways (USDH) finalized plans for a new round of Logan Canyon highway construction on September 7, 1960. The plans included specifications to widen five miles of U.S. Highway 89 from 1500 East in Logan to Spring Hollow, resurface it with four inches of asphalt, and straighten out some of its curves. On August 2, the State of Utah awarded the contract to the Jack B. Parson Company of Smithfield at a bid of $527,737. The absence of legal obstacles and minimal environmental protest enabled the contractor to begin construction just one month after the plans were finalized.32 The sole voice of opposition came from the State Department of Fish and Game, which feared consequences to fish habitat along the proposed route. The concern was over the Logan River and three small dam-formed lakes, which shared the canyon bottom with the road segment in question. One ecological concern was the straightening and rechanneling of the river, which could increase water velocity and its erosive ability, causing siltation that endangers aquatic vegetation and spawning beds. The removal of overhanging vegetation was also problematic; such plant life provides shade, food, and a habitat structure in aquatic systems. Because of these threats, the United States Forest Service (USFS), which had to issue special use permits for construction projects in areas under its control, insisted that USDH compromise with the State Department of Fish and Game on its original plans. However, partly because of the public’s indifference, the final design failed to prevent the majority of environmental malfeasance. Most notably, one-third of the lake at Third Dam was filled in order to straighten a curve.33 Though the public did nothing to alter, delay, or halt the construction, it did not go entirely unnoticed. Once the work began, several columnists, local citizens, and past tourists offered their opinions on the editorial page of the Herald Journal. Local residents, especially, supported the construction and foresaw no negative effects. “Whether we like it or not, Logan Canyon is a commercial route,” stated Alan Conrad, a Logan resident. “The necessity of trailing behind a large, slow truck or a slow sight-seer’s car is not conducive to business efficiency.”34 Owen Brown of Logan added his approval: “I can say, after driving through the construction area, that no harm is coming to Logan or its people through this project.”35 The opposition, though less local in its composition, was equally confident in its stance. Some blamed commercialism and consumption for the 32 Utah State Department of Highways design plans, project F-021-1, 1960, UDOT; Logan (UT) Herald Journal, August 3, September 2, 1960. 33 Jack H. Berryman, “Logan Canyon Road Controversy, Anatomy of a Principle,” National Parks Magazine, July 1963, 13, 14; Richard T. T. Forman et. al., Road Ecology: Science and Solutions (Washington, D.C.: Island Press, 2003), 340. 34 Logan (UT) Herald Journal, October 9, 1960. 35 Logan (UT) Herald Journal, October 3, 1960.

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decision to modify the highway. Virgil Walker, a Missourian who had once visited the area with his family, lamented the threat to the canyon and hoped it would not be “debased or dissipated in the pursuit of the ‘almighty dollar.’” 36 Another man, a Washington, D.C., wr iter named John Bulger, cynically charged that USDH’s goal was simply “to get people into Logan City faster so they have more time to spend their money.” 37 Others questioned the necessity of a faster, straighter road. “Who wants a speedway to drive so fast you can’t see or enjoy the beautiful canyon?” asked Mrs. Floyd Jack H. Berryman, a USU wildlife Kendrick of Providence, Utah.38 management specialist, circa Most notable among those opposed to 1960. the canyon construction was Dr. Jack H. Berryman, a wildlife management specialist at Utah State University (USU). Berryman had just returned to Logan after a stint with the Federal Bureau of Sport Fisheries and Wildlife in Minnesota, and he was appalled by the public’s seeming indifference to the alterations in the canyon. “Cache Valley residents can now see at first hand the effects of straightening and widening the highway up Logan Canyon,” he wrote. “If this scene of the first phase of the work is projected on up the canyon, it should give every Cache resident—and in fact, every Utah resident—cause for serious reflection.”39 For the next five years, Berryman used his position at the university to promote this awareness.40 Not long after the bulldozers rolled out of the canyon, the College of Forest, Range, and Wildlife Management, under the direction of Berryman and Dean J. Whitney Floyd, decided to study the impact of highway 36 37 38 39 40

Logan (UT) Herald Journal, October 18, 1960. Logan (UT) Herald Journal, August 13, 1960. Logan (UT) Herald Journal, October 3, 1960. Logan (UT) Herald Journal, September 16, 1960. Vitae and biographical sketches, box 1, fd. 1, Jack H. Berryman Papers, COLL MSS 289, USUSCA.

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construction on land and resource use. In a letter dated March 28, 1961, Floyd announced to C. Taylor Burton, USDH Director of Highways, the appointment of two faculty committees: one to examine “the broad regional and state-wide implications of highway development with respect to urban and rural development, resource use, outdoor recreation, and other factors” and another to study “the impact of the proposed road construction on the fishery resource and fisherman utilization of the Logan River.”41 The result of this effort was a university publication entitled, “Road Construction and Resource Use,” printed in late 1961. Whether he intended to or not, Chase put his school squarely in the center of the Logan Canyon highway controversy with this work, declaring in the foreword: “It is my belief that universities have educational responsibilities that go beyond the campus—responsibilities for creating an informed public aware of issues and prepared to act intelligently.”42 In the following pages, the booklet dealt with the impact of highways on “three major resource groups: (1) Forest, range, and watershed resources; (2) Wildlife resources, and (3) Scenic and recreational resources.” The first section mainly addressed the unnatural erosion caused by highway cuts and fills and the effect of such erosion on aquatic wildlife; this was reminiscent of the concerns expressed the previous year by the State Department of Fish and Game. The next section emphasized the role of highways as barriers to migrating species and the often-fatal result when animals try to cross them. The writers of the final section focused on the need to preserve the scenic nature of highway corridors for the sake of those who seek out such beauty for recreational purposes. The book concluded with recommendations for coordinated planning among the public and private interests of agriculture, wildlife, and recreation.43 Though penned exclusively by university faculty, the manifesto served as a concrete sign that organized environmentalism was beginning to take hold in Cache Valley. Burton, of the USDH, saw the publication as an attack on the Logan Canyon project and aired his frustration in a letter to President Chase dated November 20, 1961: “It is extremely disheartening to those of us engaged in the very complex and demanding endeavor of highway building to have such a statement issued under your sponsorship at a time when more heat than light has been generated on the subject by demand and counter demands relating to Logan Canyon.”44 Floyd responded a few days later, assuring Burton that the university committees wanted the 41 J. Whitney Floyd to C. Taylor Burton, June 23, 1961, Historical Materials, College of Natural Resources, University Archives 14.7:17, box 8, USUSCA. 42 College of Forest, Range, and Wildlife Management, “Road Construction and Resource Use,” No. 3 Land-Grant Centennial Diamond Jubilee Series, 1961, 4, USUSCA. 43 College of Forest, Range, and Wildlife Management, “Road Construction and Resource Use,” 9–15. 44 C. Taylor Burton to Daryl Chase, November 20, 1961, Historical Materials, College of Natural Resources, box 8, USUSCA.

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road in Logan Canyon to be completed and would not involve themselves in administrative decisions regarding the project. He and his colleagues simply expressed the hope that the state agencies involved could find a solution that included “a satisfactory design, adequate financing, with minimum damage to the natural resources affected.”45 Nevertheless, it was clear that the USDH’s decisions would no longer go unchallenged. By the end of 1961, mounting concern for the environmental integrity of Logan Canyon brought the phase-two design process to an impasse. The USFS refused to issue a special-use permit, even though the State Road Commission and the U.S. Bureau of Public Roads had approved a redesign of the Spring Hollow-to-Right Hand Fork construction that included an additional $100,000 for resource protection work. Their studies indicated that the proposed highway alignment would encroach too far into the Logan River channel, damaging its aquatic habitat. Citing the potential displacement of the natural pools and vegetation necessary for the survival of the river’s trout population, the USFS recommended another $127,000 of work needed to meet what they called “‘minimum damage’ requirements.” “I cannot,” Regional Forester Floyd Iverson concluded, “in the absence of the facts to the contrary, agree to a proposal set at a level below that which meets the ‘minimum’ resource protection need.”46 A July 1963 article in National Parks Magazine, wr itten by Jack Berryman, brought the Logan Canyon controversy to a national audience. In this four-page spread, complete with maps and photographs, Berryman argued that “we must have a modern highway network. This, however, cannot continue to be engineered at the expense of irreplaceable public resources.” He went on to call for “mandatory coordination between highway planning agencies and public and private organizations concerned with resource use,” legislation to protect natural resources, and increased public involvement. 47 Given the increasing publicity of the highway project, the USDH eventually bent to the pressure of the USFS and again modified its designs. They accepted the USFS requirements to avoid the most significant riverbed disturbance, and by 1968 work was underway on the 4.2-mile stretch of U.S. Highway 89 from Spring Hollow to Right Hand Fork. While environmentalists might not have received all of the concessions they wanted, in comparison to the 1961 project, the 1968 construction represented an important compromise.48 Following the reasonably contentious debate with the USFS, the USDH, intent on improving safety in the canyon, did not wait long to resume their 45 J. Whitney Floyd to C. Taylor Burton, Harold S. Crane, Floyd Iverson, and Grant E. Meyers, November 25, 1961, Historical Materials, College of Natural Resources, box 8, USUSCA. 46 Floyd Iverson to J. Whitney Floyd, December 4, 1961, Historical Materials, College of Natural Resources, box 8, USUSCA; Floyd Iverson, “The Forest Service Position on the Logan Canyon Highway,” Historical Materials, College of Natural Resources, box 8, USUSCA. 47 Berryman, “Logan Canyon,” 15. 48 Utah State Department of Highways design plans, project F-021-1(3), October 1967, UDOT.

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highway alteration efforts in Logan Canyon. On August 27, 1969, the State Road Commission of Utah quietly held a public meeting to discuss the design features of a section of U.S. Highway 89 from Right Hand Fork to Twin Bridges. This proposal resulted in another article from National Parks Magazine, written by the conservationist George Alderson, which criticized the 1968 construction as “the same old cut-and-fill job”—despite the compromise between the USDH and the USFS. Alderson also condemned the most recent proposal, arguing that by funding a portion of the highway construction, the U.S. government was irrationally using federal money to destroy federal land. With enough public pressure, Alderson hoped that “Logan Canyon can be the proving ground for a new concept of scenic road conservation.”49 Indeed, the third phase of construction would play out much differently, thanks to potent legal weapons provided by new federal legislation, namely the recently signed National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA). Debated by Congress in 1968 and 1969 and signed into law by President Richard Nixon on January 1, 1970, NEPA fulfilled the need for an encompassing strategy of environmental consideration and protection for the country’s invaluable wildlife and habitats. Section 102, part C, of the legislation required “all agencies of the Federal Government” to include in every recommendation or report on proposals for legislation and other major Federal actions significantly affecting the quality of the human environment, a detailed statement by the responsible official on— (i) the environmental impact of the proposed action, (ii) any adverse environmental effects which cannot be avoided should the proposal be implemented, (iii) alternatives to the proposed action, (iv) the relationship between local short-term uses of man’s environment and the maintenance and enhancement of long-term productivity, and (v) any irreversible and irretrievable commitments of resources which would be involved in the proposed action should it be implemented.50

The “detailed statement” required by NEPA—which officials eventually termed an environmental impact statement—pushed ecological concern to the forefront of highway planning.51 This significant adjustment in federal environmental policy was accompanied by a change in leadership for those fighting Logan Canyon highway construction. When Jack Berryman departed USU in 1965, William T. Helm, an associate professor of wildlife resources, assumed the reins of the Logan Canyon cause. In June 1970, Helm formed a new faculty group 49 Logan (UT) Herald Journal, September 10, 1970; George Alderson, “Logan Canyon: Standards for Destruction,” National Parks Magazine, November 1969, 20. 50 National Environmental Policy Act, sec. 102, 1970, accessed November 15, 2006, http://www.nepa.gov/nepa/regs/nepa/nepaqia.htm. 51 Ray Clark and Larry Canter, Environmental Policy and NEPA: Past, Present, and Future (Boca Raton, FL: St. Lucie Press, 1997), 10, 12.

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known as the Northern Utah Environmental Advisory Committee to review the latest plans. He then forwarded a list of questions about the ecological, recreational, and scenic impacts of the latest project to the head of each agency required to approve designs for construction: Ross Plant, Utah State Road Commission; Vern Hamre, USFS; and George Bohn, U.S. Bureau of Public Roads. Unlike Berryman’s committee in the 1960s, Helm’s committee consisted of many members outside the College of Forest, Range, and Wildlife Management. Participation by engineers, botanists, social scientists, and a philosopher attested to the widening appeal of environmentalism in Cache Valley, though such interest remained concentrated at the university.52 Despite initially positive correspondence, Helm’s committee and the USFS soon found themselves opposite the highway agencies on many key issues. By August 1970 both the Utah State Road Commission and the U.S. Bureau of Public Roads had approved the plans without the execution of any environmental analysis. Believing that the work would lack the environmental consequence necessary for extensive study, Ross Plant suggested in a letter to Helm that “provisions of the Environmental Policy Act probably do not apply to construction in Logan Canyon.” 53 Nevertheless, Helm and his committee had several aesthetic and ecological concerns. Like Berryman before him, Helm feared the disruption of canyon scenery and the intrusion of the road into the river, this time due to the USDH’s initial proposal to widen each lane from twelve feet to sixteen feet to add six-foot shoulders to the existing alignment. He also rejected the department’s assertion that straightening and widening the road would make it safer, suggesting instead that such modifications would encourage motorists to drive faster and would thereby increase accidents. Helm recommended widening the road by only a few feet and adding passing lanes only where room permitted. “Moderate improvements are needed,” he said, “but not a new road.”54 With pressure mounting on the USDH, the USFS issued an “environmental analysis report” in April 1971, which the author claimed “responds directly to the intention and direction given by the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969.”55 The report made fifty-three recommendations to minimize the road’s impact on the canyon, from landscaping disturbed areas to avoiding alterations of the Logan River channel. The Utah State Road Commission

52 William T. Helm to Ross Plant, Vern Hamre, and George Bohn, June 23, 1970, Logan Canyon Highway Reconstruction Correspondence, item MSS 78, USUSCA. 53 Ross Plant to William T. Helm, July 28, 1970, Logan Canyon Highway Reconstruction Correspondence, item MSS 78, USUSCA. 54 Logan (UT) Herald Journal, August 31, September 10, 1970; U.S. Forest Service, Environmental Analysis Report: Logan Canyon Highway, 1971, p. 26, Logan Canyon Highway Construction correspondence, item MSS 78, USUSCA; C. Arthur Geurts to Blaine J. Kay, October 8, 1970, Logan Canyon Highway Reconstruction correspondence, item MSS 78, USUSCA. 55 U.S. Forest Service, Environmental Analysis Report, 1.

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continued to push for the construction until 1972, when the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) decided that the Logan Canyon project required the preparation of an environmental impact statement (EIS). This decision represented a setback for the Utah State Road Commission and the USDH, which did little to promote the construction for several years.56 The Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) seemed ready for another fight in April 1979 when it reproposed highway alterations between Right Hand Fork and Ricks Spring in a Class III “non-major” federal action category, thus exempting the project from the necessity of a full EIS. Reaction to the recommendation was swift and stern. The Utah Chapter of the Sierra Club expressed apprehension over UDOT’s compliance with NEPA guidelines. Utah First District Representative Gunn McKay echoed this concern, writing to George Bohn, the division administrator of the FHWA, “There are those who feel that the assignment of a Category III classification does not reflect a correct assessment of the changes which are to be made in the canyon.”57 The controversy also drew attention from the Citizens for the Protection of Logan Canyon (CPLC), a local group of concerned residents that organized in 1976 to oppose development in Stump Hollow. The group compiled “an analysis of the proposed re-alignment of U.S. 89 in Logan Canyon, Utah,” and presented it to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on August 20, 1979. The document’s authors, who included USU professors Jack Spence and William Helm, noted apparent errors and discrepancies in UDOT’s traffic forecasts and accident statistics, the foundation of the agency’s argument for road improvements. They also explored the potential environmental impact of the project on Logan Canyon, particularly its riparian habitat.58 With pressure from the FHWA, UDOT decided to accept the added costs of the full EIS and upgrade the project to the Class I “major” category in December 1979. Politicians and businessmen who supported the highway construction criticized this decision, including state senator Charles Bullen, who represented Cache and Rich counties at the time. “We have been studying that roadway for 15 years and nothing has been done,” Bullen said. “I’m recommending to the governor that we not put any more money into the project and that we just not do it period.”59 56 Utah State Department of Highways design plans, project F-021-1(4), 1972, UDOT; Utah Department of Transportation and Federal Highway Administration, “U.S. Highway 89 Logan Canyon Highway Cache and Rich Counties, Utah: Final Environmental Impact Statement,” 1993, 1-1. 57 Gunn McKay to George W. Bohn, August 2, 1979, box 450, fd. 14, Gunn McKay Papers, COLL MSS 86, USUSCA. 58 Utah Statesman, December 5, 1979; Brian Beard to M. J. Roberts, November 21, 1979, Series VIII.B, box 28, fd. 8, Sierra Club, Utah Chapter archives, 1972–1986, COLL MSS 148, USUSCA; Citizens for the Protection of Logan Canyon, Logan Canyon Newsletter, November 8, 1976, box 1, fd. 4, Citizens for the Protection of Logan Canyon/Logan Canyon Coalition Papers (hereafter CPLC/LCC Papers), COLL MSS 314, USUSCA; Citizens for the Protection of Logan Canyon, “An Analysis of the Proposed Re-alignment of U.S. 89 in Logan Canyon, Utah,” August 20, 1979, Series VIII.B, box 28, fd. 12, Sierra Club archives, USUSCA. 59 Salt Lake Tribune, December 13, 1979.

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Just one week after approval of the EIS, a bleak state roads budget and continuing environmental opposition led UDOT to abandon its decision to perform an environmental study on the highway. It would instead begin work on plans to improve guardrails and signage, which the agency completed in 1984 and implemented the next year. Interestingly, not even these minor modifications went up without criticism. “The Sierra Club is concerned about the numerous new reflectors and posts that were placed along the lower portion of Logan Canyon Highway,” read a June 16, 1986, letter from Rudy Lukez of the Sierra Club’s Cache Group to UDOT’s Lynn Zolinger. “We feel that these closely spaced markers are very unsightly.”60 The new guardrails, reflectors, and signs were hardly in the ground before UDOT regrouped and began to again push for more extensive changes to the unmodified stretch of the Logan Canyon highway from Right Hand Fork to Garden City. In June 1986 UDOT, in cooperation with the USFS, awarded the environmental and engineering consulting firm CH2M Hill with $530,000 to complete “a comprehensive, year-long study” of this twenty-eight-mile stretch. Because of the FHWA’s past assertion that proposed construction in the canyon required the completion of a full EIS, the contract stipulated that the report be prepared as a less-intensive “environmental assessment” with the expectation that a full EIS might ultimately be required.61 The three main goals of the study were “to identify locations on the road where problems exist in safety, maintenance, road design, and capacity; to propose several alternative means, through repair or improvements, to the problems; and to conduct an analysis of the potential impacts on the environment of the proposed alternatives.”62 UDOT, conscious of the controversy CH2M’s recommendations would stir, soon assembled an “interdisciplinary team” charged with reviewing the firm’s findings and presenting them to the public and other government agencies as part of a “public involvement program.” The team consisted of representatives from UDOT, CH2M Hill, the USFS, the FHWA, and representatives of the environmental community, including Jack Spence and Rudy Lukez of the Sierra Club, Tom Lyon of the Utah Wilderness Association, Steve Flint of the Bridgerland Audubon Association, and William Helm of USU’s wildlife resources program. Most of these men were also involved with the Citizens for the Protection of Logan Canyon, and all but Lukez, a rocket scientist at Morton Thiokol in Brigham City, were affiliated with USU.63 60 Logan (UT) Herald Journal, December 15, 1978; Utah State Department of Highways design plans, 1984, UDOT; Rudy Lukez to Lynn Zolinger, June 16, 1986, Series VIII.B, box 27, fd. 9, Sierra Club archives, USUSCA. 61 Logan (UT) Herald Journal, August 10, 1986. 62 Logan (UT) Herald Journal, August 10, 1986. 63 “Agenda—Logan Canyon Study, Interdisciplinary Study Team, Meeting No. 2—Ogden, Utah, June 23, 1986—7:00 p.m.,” Series VIII.B, box 27, fd. 1, Sierra Club archives, USUSCA.64 Logan Canyon Environmental Study Public Meeting, Logan, Utah, September 23, 1986, Series VIII.B, box 27, fd. 10, Sierra Club archives, USUSCA.

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In the fall of 1986, UDOT held two public A public scoping meeting meetings to allow Logan and Garden City concerning the Logan Canyon residents to air their opinions. At these environmental study, Logan City hearings groups supporting and opposing Hall, March 4, 1987. canyon construction coalesced in much the same way that they had in the past. On one side were environmentalists (many of them affiliated with USU) and some members of the USFS, who both felt that little or nothing should be done to the highway. The other side consisted of business owners, elected officials, and citizens who regularly traveled the canyon and viewed the highway as inadequate and in need of repair. The concerns of the first group hinged mainly on the preservation of the scenic beauty and river habitat in the canyon. “You might talk about change rather than improvement, or if you want another word that is loaded use bulldoze rather than improvement,” quipped Wendell Anderson, a USU professor of political science. The latter group consisted mostly of people who traveled the canyon on a regular basis and had an understandable interest in safety. “There are some damn serious places in that canyon,” said Ted Seeholzer from Beaver Mountain Ski Area, addressing the assembly. “I’ve had family members who have been injured because of severe turns, and I’m sure a lot of you have.”64 This type of comment was largely echoed in the Garden City meeting. “How many lawsuits do we have to file to get this sub-standard road improved?” asked one frustrated resident.65 64 Logan Canyon Environmental Study Public Meeting, Logan, Utah, September 23, 1986, Series VIII.B, box 27, fd. 10, Sierra Club Archives, USUSCA. 65 Logan Canyon Public Meeting, November 3, 1986, Series VIII.B, box 27, fd. 10, Sierra Club archives, USUSCA.

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Pressured by the growing controversy, the FHWA upgraded the incomplete Environmental Assessment to a full EIS in December 1986. Financially overextended by the rising expectations, CH2M Hill requested and received an additional $90,240 in 1987 and $91,000 in 1988, bringing the report’s total price tag to over $700,000. What was originally intended to be a year-long study slowly became more costly in both time and money.66 As the public awaited the delayed release of the draft EIS, the controversy over the Logan Canyon highway construction intensified. The Cache Chamber of Commerce board of directors voted to make the road project a “priority.”67 The city councils of both Smithfield and Logan approved limited improvements to the canyon, including the replacement of narrow bridges and the addition of several turnouts. In March 1987 UDOT held another pair of public meetings in Logan and Garden City addressing the highway construction. Thanks to a heavy turnout at the Logan meeting by representatives and members of the Utah Wilderness Association, Cache Group Sierra Club, Friends of Bear Lake, Bridgerland Audubon Society, and Citizens for the Protection of Logan Canyon, most of the comments called on UDOT to either leave the canyon alone or make only minor safety improvements. Throughout the summer of 1987, these groups circulated newsletters, organized publicity events, and wrote numerous letters to UDOT and the USFS in opposition to the construction. Many shared the sentiment of the CPLC that “protection of Logan Canyon’s scenic beauty, fish and wildlife habitat, rare plants, recreation sites, and naturalness must be a prime concern.”68 As the draft EIS neared completion, environmentalists felt that UDOT was increasingly ignoring their concerns over the proposed Logan Canyon highway construction. Although the interdisciplinary team held twenty-five meetings between June 1986 and July 1987, environmentalists did not meet formally with highway officials again until a “citizens’ review committee” convened in September and November 1989. This group—appointed by UDOT to ensure that the draft EIS was “understandable” and “appropriately addressed” environmental and safety concerns—included just one environmentalist, Bruce Pendery of the CPLC. The other four members represented the Cache County Chamber of Commerce, the City of Logan, and the Cache and Rich county commissions. Like the interdisciplinary team, the citizens’ review committee provided UDOT with input for the design plan but had no role in the final approval of the project. That decision would be made by UDOT, USFS, and FHWA.69 66

Logan (UT) Herald Journal, May 31, June 22, 1987, October 18, 1988. Paula O. Bell to Todd G. Weston, January 7, 1987, Series VIII.B, box 27, fd. 9, Sierra Club archives, USUSCA. 68 Logan (UT) Herald Journal, March 4, 12, April 15, 1987; Citizens for the Protection of Logan Canyon, Logan Canyon Bulletin, February 1987, box 1, fd. 4, CPLC/LCC Papers, USUSCA. 69 Utah Department of Transportation, “U.S. Highway Route 89 Logan Canyon Highway Cache and Rich Counties, Utah: Draft Environmental Impact Statement,” 1990, 7-2 to 7-6; Salt Lake Tribune, December 8, 1987; Logan (UT) Herald Journal, January 1, 1988. 67

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In November 1990, CH2M Hill finally Activists from the CPLC mark completed and released the much-anticipated the new road alignments under draft EIS. The document included eight consideration in the canyon, alternatives, ranging from no action to a June 1987. recommendation that ignored environmental concerns, to bring the highway in line with national standards. However, the two main alternatives fell between these extremes: the “composite alternative,” agreed upon by the FHWA, UDOT, and USFS; and the “conservationists’ alternative,” a more environmentally conscious approach spearheaded by CPLC. Both accepted the notion that the highway needed to be modified with consideration for the beauty of the canyon and its environment, but differed on what the extent of those changes should be.70 The composite alternative and the conservationists’ alternative began with similar plans for the highway just north of Right Hand Fork, but the proposals became increasingly dissimilar as the highway continued toward Garden City. In the Middle Canyon (Right Hand Fork to 1.8 miles east of Ricks Spring), both alternatives recommended that the road retain its original 23-foot width and 25 miles-per-hour design speed for the first four miles. Beyond this point, the composite alternative called for straighter curves and a 34-foot pavement width in order to increase the design speed to 35 miles per hour, while the conservationists’ alternative sought to maintain the same road width and design speed throughout the entire section. Both plans included the replacement of five bridges, and neither required the river to be rechanneled. For the upper canyon (1.8 miles east 70

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of Ricks Spring to the Rich County line), both alternatives endorsed the replacement of six bridges and the construction of three passing lanes, but that is where the agreement ended. The composite alternative recommended that the road be widened from 23 feet to 40 feet and four curves be straightened to increase the design speed from 40 to 50 miles per hour. The conservationists’ alternative rejected all of these changes. Perhaps the most significant point of contention was the composite alternative’s plan to rechannel Beaver Creek, a suggestion that the CPLC’s Tom Lyon called “an environmental outrage.”71 There was even less overlap in the alternative’s designs for the Rich County segment (Rich County line to Garden City). The conservationists’ alternative did not include any changes to the highway’s 23-foot pavement width or the alignment of its curves, leaving the road’s 25 miles-per-hour design speed unchanged. The composite alternative, on the other hand, called for a pavement width of 47 feet and the flattening of 16 curves, increasing the design speed from 40 to 50 miles per hour.72 Clearly, highway officials and environmentalists had yet to reach a compromise. UDOT and CH2M Hill cosponsored a public hearing at Mount Logan Middle School on January 15, 1991. More than 150 environmentalists and construction advocates attended the four-hour meeting. “The loss of wetlands, reduction of fish population, threats to plants and loss of migratory species—to me is not worth the five or 10 minutes we will save traveling through Logan Canyon,” said Logan resident William Stone, echoing the concerns Cache Valley environmentalists had expressed for three decades. Supporters of the construction also chimed in with recycled appeals. “The road through Logan Canyon is truly our lifeline,” said Laketown City Council member Craig Floyd. “Our economic present and economic future hinge on this lifeline.”73 Unwilling to fold in the face of controversy for a third time, UDOT decided in June 1991 to push the process forward and move ahead with the final EIS. Angered, environmentalists heightened their protest of the impending construction. In April 1992, four hundred protesters gathered in Logan Canyon wielding signs that read “UDOT, Go Build in Hell” and “We Don’t Prefer It.” Amid threats of a lengthy court battle, UDOT and CH2M Hill completed the final EIS in March 1993.74 The final EIS referred to the design recommendations of UDOT and the FHWA as the “preferred alternative,” a slightly updated version of the composite alternative in the draft EIS. This new set of proposals included some changes sought by environmentalists, including the elimination of a passing lane on a narrow section of road in the middle canyon known as 71 72

Thomas J. Lyon to Dave Baumgartner, January 17, 1989, box 1, fd. 1, CPLC/LCC Papers, USUSCA. Utah Department of Transportation, “Draft Environmental Impact Statement,” 2-21 to 2-36, 2-38 to

2-56. 73 74

Salt Lake Tribune, January 17, 1991. Salt Lake Tribune, June 2, 1991, April 26, 1992, March 3, 1993.

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“the dugway” and a retraction of the previous plan to rechannel Beaver Creek. However, the preferred alternative did include the straightening of nineteen curves along the Rich County segment, an increase from the sixteen recommended in the composite alternative. In an effort to hammer out a final compromise, UDOT invited representaThis design was emblazoned on tives of the CPLC to participate in a series of T-shirts for the 1993 Giardia Run, meetings held between December 1993 and a fundraising event once held October 1994. These sessions resulted in one annually in Logan. The logo last significant concession to the environmen- features a giardia protozoan talists: UDOT agreed to narrow the pavement holding a monkey wrench—a width in the first eight miles of the Upper Canyon from forty feet to thirty-four feet. symbol of environmental With this change the CPLC offered its “provi- protest—and kicking a UDOT sional and conditional approval” of the construction cone. It also alludes preferred alternative, though it still opposed to the Branch Davidians, a cult many of the design proposals and ultimately besieged by state and federal law remained unconvinced of the project’s neces- enforcement outside of Waco, sity. In January 1995 the FHWD and UDOT Texas, just months earlier. approved the final “record of decision,” recom- Proceeds from the 1993 run benemending the modified preferred alternative as a fitted groups opposed to UDOT’s guideline for the highway modifications. The Logan Canyon Highway efforts. USFS released its own Record of Decision in March, accepting the preferred alternative and ostensibly bringing an end to the twenty-five-year battle over the Logan Canyon road construction.75 Not everyone readily accepted the preferred alternative, however. A group of environmentalists frustrated by the CPLC’s willingness to compromise formed the Logan Canyon Coalition (LCC) in 1995 “to seek further modifications through the Forest Service appeals process.”76 The 75 Utah Department of Transportation, “Draft Environmental Impact Statement,” 2-54; UDOT and FHWA “Final Environmental Impact Statement,” 2-2 to 2-16; Steering Committee, Citizens for the Protection of Logan Canyon, to David W. Berg, October 27, 1994, box 1, fd. 1, CPLC/LCC Papers, USUSCA; Utah Department of Transportation, “Record of Decision,” 1995, USUSCA; U.S. Forest Service, “Record of Decision,” 1995, Utah Wilderness Association Records, 1980–2000, box 6, fd. 7, COLL MSS 200, RG: Forest Service, Series: Wasatch National Forest, USUSCA. 76 Logan Canyon Coalition, Canyon Wind, August 1, 1995, box 1, fd. 8, CPLC/LCC Papers, USUSCA. Kevin Kobe, a USU employee, led the LCC.

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LCC, in conjunction with the Utah Rivers Conservation Council, submitted an appeal on May 10, 1995, which claimed that “the Forest Service’s Record of Decision violates guidelines within the Wasatch-Cache National Forest Land and Resources Management Plan concerning wildlife, fisheries habitat, road construction, water quality, and economic impacts.” 77 The USFS promptly denied the petition on June 29, 1995. “We have carefully examined the decisions and mitigation measures taken by the Regional Forester and find them reasonable and supportable,” insisted Sterling J. Wilcox, the USFS appeal deciding officer, in a response letter. “Accordingly, Regional Forester Bosworth’s March 31, Steve Flint of Citizens for the 1995, decision for the U.S. Highway 89 reha- Protection of Logan Canyon bilitation project is affirmed.”78 This was the leading a protest meeting at the final word in the matter; plans were completed Guinavah amphitheater in the for Burnt and Lower Twin Bridges that same canyon, May 1993. year and unveiled the next. The Logan Canyon highway was under construction for the following decade.79 From humble origins on the editorial pages of the Herald Journal, concern over the Logan Canyon highway grew into an organized and influential protest that changed the highway design process in Cache Valley. Jack Berryman’s group of professors from the College of Forest, Range, and Wildlife Management was an unusually active and organized environmental association for the time. Their scientifically reasoned protest encouraged unprecedented compromise from the Utah State Department of Highways in 1968. The successor to Berryman’s group, the Northern Utah Environ77 78 79

Kevin Kobe to Jack Ward Thomas, May 10, 1995, box 1, fd. 7, CPLC/LCC Papers, USUSCA. Sterling J. Wilcox to Kevin Kobe, June 29, 1995, box 1, fd. 7, CPLC/LCC Papers, USUSCA. Logan Canyon Coalition, Canyon Wind, August 1, 1996, box 1, fd. 8, CPLC/LCC Papers, USUSCA.

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mental Advisory Committee, experienced even greater success, effectively heading off construction plans in 1971. By 1979 new citizen action groups, like the Citizens for the Protection of Logan Canyon, formed to fight the continuing possibility of highway modifications. Their demands for the completion of an EIS once again hindered the highway department’s intentions. The deterioration of bridges and of the road surface convinced UDOT in 1986 that something had to be done. Still, UDOT was met at every turn by a growing number of concerned citizens willing to attend public meetings, stage protests, and even file legal appeals. When UDOT made its final decision in 1995, the details were partly a product of a strong environmental voice that had been muted in the original 1969 proposal and nearly absent in 1960. The result of Logan Canyon highway debate should not be characterized as an environmentalist victory over UDOT, however. Certainly, UDOT became more open to the importance of protecting certain ecological and aesthetic resources. “Thirty years ago, we were not as environmentally conscious,” conceded UDOT’s Logan Canyon project engineer, Luke Mildon, in August 1998. “We have undergone a philosophical change, and we recognize that there has to be a balance. Not all people have the same values.”80 But environmentalists also came to acknowledge the necessity of certain alterations to the Logan Canyon highway. In a brochure produced after the 1993 release of the final EIS, Citizens for a Safe and Scenic Canyon (a group associated with Citizens for the Protection of Logan Canyon) conceded, “We support making the canyon safe by replacing and widening bridges; constructing more pullouts for slow drivers; adding several climbing lanes, turning lanes, and parking areas; and putting more and better signage in the canyon.”81 In the end neither side got everything it wanted. There was no winner— but there was no loser, either. The final outcome of the Logan Canyon controversy was a compromise: a product of federal legislation that gave each side a place at the negotiating table.

80 81

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Salt Lake Tribune, August 17, 1998. “Logan Canyon: Make It Safe, Keep It Beautiful,” box 1, fd. 5, CPLC/LCC Papers, USUSCA.


LIBRARY OF CONGRESS

All Hail to the President! Theodore Roosevelt Comes to Utah, May 29, 1903 By MICHAEL S. ELDREDGE

I

n 1903, the forty-fifth and newest star Theodore Roosevelt, on the national ensign represented photographed in 1903. Utah. Since its statehood in 1896, Utah had enjoyed relative prosper ity. This had occurred under the Republican administrations of William McKinley and Theodore Roosevelt, and, indeed, the state was in the midst of an evolving relationship with the party. When the Republican Party first organized in Utah in 1891, Frank Cannon lamented that few Mormons joined.1 During the presidential election of 1896, Republicans and Democrats alike voted for the Democrat William Jennings Bryan. Then in 1900, the McKinley-Roosevelt ticket carried the state, even as a growing number of Latter-day Saints were switching from the Democratic Party of their fathers to the Republican Party.2 When Theodore Roosevelt took the oath of office as the twenty-sixth

Michael S. Eldredge is a lawyer practicing in Salt Lake City. A political and legal historian who concentrates on the Progressive Era, Eldredge has taught history and political science at the University of Phoenix for the past fourteen years. 1 After serving terms as a Republican congressman and senator, Frank Cannon switched to the Democratic Party in 1901. He did so because of his commitment to free silver and other issues. See Frank J. Cannon and Harvey J. O’Higgins, Under the Prophet in Utah: The National Menace of a Political Priestcraft (Boston: C. M. Clark, 1911), 117–18. 2 Allan Kent Powell, “Elections in the State of Utah,” in Utah History Encyclopedia, ed. Allan Kent Powell (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 1994), 158. Many Republicans voted for Bryan in 1896 because of the silver issue.

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president of the United States on September 14, 1901, at Buffalo, New York, he was forty-two years old and the youngest man to ever hold that office. Roosevelt was a progressive Republican who favored social, political, and economic reform, in opposition to the traditionally conservative policies of the nineteenth-century Democratic Party. While the funeral train bore the body of the recently assassinated President William McKinley back to Washington, Roosevelt confided in his colleagues his goal to break up the large trusts that controlled over 65 percent of the nation’s wealth—a problem presidents Harrison, Cleveland, and McKinley had largely ignored.3 Within a few short months after taking office, Roosevelt declared his intention to implement his new conservationist policies; principal among them were his plans to irrigate the West and reclaim millions of acres of arid lands. In the mid-1880s, Roosevelt had proved his ability to live “the strenuous life” in an area near Medora, North Dakota, where he ranched, hunted wild animals, herded cattle, and even chased down horse thieves. Now the president longed for the West again; he wanted to learn firsthand what needed attention, and he wanted to protect the forests and immense interior lands before industrialists destroyed it. On April 1, 1903, scarcely eighteen months into his presidency, Roosevelt began a two-month trip into the West. This trip established him as a “wilderness warrior,” a legacy of his love for the West. By late May 1903, Roosevelt was nearing the end of his journey through the West. Over the course of sixty-six days, he had visited twenty-five states, travelled over 14,000 miles (averaging 212 miles a day), and delivered 260 stump speeches and five major addresses.4 He had hunted in Yellowstone Park, camped in Yosemite with John Muir, and enjoyed the company of governors, mayors, senators, and congressmen eager to show off the young president to their constituents. Throughout the trip, he kept a close eye on the natural resources that he had sworn to protect and thought of ways to balance their use while conserving their legacy. Most of all, however, Roosevelt reveled in the adulation of thousands upon thousands of the people whom he came to see, people he considered to be his fellow pioneer frontiersmen and women. Among those he would visit were the people of Utah. Presidential visits, although rare, gave Utahns a chance to demonstrate their loyalty and showcase their hospitality. Roosevelt’s visit promised special recognition for the state because of the remarkable irrigation system that Utahns had developed over the last five decades. Despite the sizeable contingent of Democrats among older generations of Utahns, both parties joined together in anticipation of the country’s attention. For once, newspapers around the country might highlight the good features of Utah. Shortly after seven o’clock on Friday morning, May 29, the pride of the 3

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Edmund Morris, Theodore Rex (New York: Random House, 2001), 28–29.


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Oregon Short Line, Engine No. 659, “one of A Union Pacific engine that pulled the handsomest and finest ever run over the Roosevelt’s train. Pictured western roads,” arrived at Ogden’s rail yard, (left–right) are Joe Sorenson, pulling the presidential train.5 A hand-picked engineer; George Smith, road crew led by Abe Hatch drove the train to Utah foreman; Sam Welch, brakeman; with the president. The weather was absolutely Sam Murphy, fireman (in cab). beautiful in a week plagued by wind and rainstorms. The train came to a stop northwest of the depot, where the “Wye” junction either took trains into the depot, or switched trains to bypass Ogden altogether. Several dignitaries boarded the train, including senators Thomas Kearns and Reed Smoot, Governor Heber Wells, Judge George W. Bartch, Senator Clarence D. Clark of Wyoming, and Ogden Mayor William Glasmann. All but Glasmann remained on the train bound for the capital city.6 In Salt Lake City, crowds began gathering at the Oregon Short Line Depot at 6:00 a.m., patiently awaiting Roosevelt’s scheduled arrival time, 8:30 a.m. By eight o’clock, journalists estimated that some 40,000 people lined the parade route that began on west South Temple Street and ran eastward to Main Street, thence south. The entire station platform was roped off down to South Temple Street. Shortly after 8:00 a.m., soldiers from Fort Douglas and the Utah National Guard marched up the platform and formed two lines. Minutes passed ever so slowly. Soon after 8:30 a.m., 4 Douglas Brinkley, The Wilderness Warrior: Theodore Roosevelt and the Crusade for America (New York: Harper, 2009), 509. 5 “Ogden, a Radiant City, Greets the Nation’s Chief,” Ogden Standard, May 29, 1903. 6 Ibid.

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the unmistakable whistle signaled the train’s A stereopticon image bearing the approach. The crowd began to chatter noisily caption “Beautiful Salt Lake City as the anticipation grew to a crescendo. Then receives an honored guest.” the train came into view, and the crowd began clapping and cheer ing. Eng ine No. 659 approached the station, with its immaculate enamel, polished brass, American flags, ribbons, and bunting. A picture of Roosevelt in a horseshoe frame hung on the engine’s front. The train pulled into the station, hissing blasts of steam while the cars ground to a halt. Three Secret Service men in Prince Albert coats and silk hats emerged from the car and spread out, their eyes scanning the scene. Next came the journalists, followed by senators Kearns and Smoot, Congressman Howell, Governor Wells, and, of course, the president. The cameras began snapping.7 After a “hearty” reception at the depot, the mayor of Salt Lake City, Ezra Thompson, escorted Roosevelt to his carriage, amidst a cheering crowd. The president “looked to be in the pink of condition, brown as a berry from the influence of the tanning winds and sunshine that he has encountered since April 1.”8 Roosevelt climbed into the lead carriage with his personal secretary, Thompson, and Wells. The party then began the journey up South Temple Street. “As the carriage passed under the archway the buglers from Ft. Douglas broke into a fanfare and the crowd assembled waved their hats and cheered themselves hoarse, the president bowing right and left with his hat in his hand.” The procession continued 7 8

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“Arrival of the Party in City,” Salt Lake Herald, May 30, 1903. “A Brilliant Street Pageant,” Deseret News, May 29, 1903.


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up South Temple Street, with the shouts of the onlookers and “the glitter of steel” marking its progress.9 Multitudes of mounted soldiers swung into the parade at 300 West and South Temple Street ahead of the carriages. Four Secret Service men walked close by Roosevelt’s vehicle, carefully searching the crowd, while two Salt Lake City policemen on horseback flanked the two-horse team pulling the lead carriage. Though the four Secret Service men around the carriage were the most visible, a second tier of protection—composed of 222 federal and state officers and soldiers—surrounded Roosevelt and spread throughout the crowd. Everywhere people cheered as Roosevelt doffed his hat and flashed his famous grin. A cavalcade of carriages followed behind him, each one carrying dignitaries and government officials. As Roosevelt passed Civil War veterans, Indian fighter veterans, and Rough Riders, they saluted and then joined the parade.10 The parade turned south at Main Street, where the tumultuous crowds included people in upper story windows. People crowded on marquees and large signs to get a better view of Roosevelt as he went by. The exclamations grew louder as the parade passed down the “canyon” of Main Street’s buildings and Roosevelt stood up in his carriage to provide the crowds with a better view. Everywhere along the parade route buildings were festooned with American flags and bright red, white, and blue banners and bunting. The crowd was jubilant. Truly, Salt Lake City gave Roosevelt an overwhelming reception. At 500 South and Main Street, the parade swung to the east and continued to the City and County Building. More than 25,000 people— nearly half of them school children—crowded on the building’s grounds. Roosevelt’s carriage continued around the building, coming to a stop at its east entrance. The president exited his carriage and went through the building to a platform built for the occasion at the west entrance. When Roosevelt emerged, thousands of school children and their teachers greeted him with loud cheers and clapping. More than 12,000 children—“from the little tot of the kindergarten to the nearly grown young men and women of the higher schools”—packed the grounds and demonstrated their patriotism “in a manner that visibly moved the chief executive.”11 Roosevelt obviously was pleased with the show of so many children.

9

Ibid. The First United States Volunteer Cavalry, formed in the Spanish-American War, was known as the Rough Riders. Roosevelt acted as second in command of the Rough Riders, and his regiments numbered approximately 1,200 officers and enlisted men. He took about 560 men to Cuba, and the rest did not see action. The Rough Riders were recruited mostly from cowboys, prospectors, and hunters from Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas, territory much like Cuba. They disbanded on September 15, 1898. The Rough Riders who accompanied Roosevelt on his trip west were a loose organization of veterans, admirers, and imitators; there was no formal organization of Rough Riders. 11 “President Gives Advice to School Children,” Salt Lake Herald, May 30, 1903. 10

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Mayor Thomson raised his hands to quiet the crowd, and for the first time since Roosevelt had arrived in Utah, the public heard him speak: Children, I have but one word to say to you, I am glad to see you. I believe in work and I believe in play; play hard when you play, and when you work don’t play at all. That’s good advice to old people as well as children. I am very glad to see you. Good-bye! Good luck to you!12

Roosevelt then stood on the small elevated stand while the various military units passed in review in front of the City and County Building. Looking concerned for the safety of the children, the president admonished the riders to proceed carefully. He returned the salute of each passing unit by raising his hat. When the Civil War veterans of the Grand Army of the Republic paraded by, he raised his hat even higher. Roosevelt reserved his most enthusiastic salute for four hundred horsemen dressed as his beloved Rough Riders, commemorating the regiment he had guided on horseback during the Spanish-American War. After sharing a few words with citizens who followed after the Rough Riders in buggies, the president departed for the LDS Tabernacle at 9:50 a.m. Earlier, while the parade had moved on to the City and County Building, people hurried from Main Street to the tabernacle to get a seat for the president’s address, which was scheduled to begin at 10:00 a.m. When the tabernacle opened its doors, a mass of humanity surged forward, “crowding, pushing and struggling” to find one of the six thousand seats.13 The tabernacle was filled to overflowing and colorfully decorated, a state that combined with the appearance of the audience—men in their Sunday best and women in spring hats and holiday dresses—to make a festive scene.14 Promptly at ten o’clock, the presidential party arrived at the northwest entrance, and the dignitaries and guests took their places in the choir gallery and the stand. Not another soul found a seat in the tabernacle; its aisles, staircases, and galleries were jammed beyond their capacity. At 10:10 a.m., the First Regimental Band of the Utah National Guard struck up “Hail to the Chief ” as Roosevelt entered the tabernacle, smiling and waving amidst the ecstatic crowd. As the audience continued its cheering, Senator Smoot introduced Roosevelt to President Joseph F. Smith and other general authorities of the LDS church. Smith and Roosevelt shared a private conversation that they both seemed to enjoy, while the onlookers roared their approval. Governor Wells appeared on the podium, and he and Roosevelt doffed their hats and posed for pictures. Still the crowd cheered; it was bedlam in the tabernacle. Finally, Wells raised his right hand high over his head, signaling for the audience to quiet down. It grew relatively calm for a moment, but the 12

“Utah’s Best Crop Gives Greeting,” Deseret News, May 29, 1903. Because it was the largest auditorium in Utah, the LDS Tabernacle hosted many ecclesiastical and secular events. “Roosevelt Day: A Glorious Occasion for Salt Lake,” Salt Lake Tribune, May 30, 1903. 14 “Tribute to the Pioneers,” Deseret News, May 29, 1903. 13

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applause began again as the crowd sensed the time neared for the president’s address. Again, Wells motioned for silence, and he then launched into a lengthy welcome speech, filled with approbations and platitudes. When he came to the conclusion of his remarks, it still was not time for the president to speak. Instead, Wells introduced Emma Ramsey, “the Utah Nightingale,” who sang a soprano solo, “The Flag without a Stain.” She finished to wild applause led by the president, whose appreciative attention made Ramsey blush.15 Senator Kearns came to the podium, introduced the president, and ended by saying, “I now take pleasure in presenting to you our The parade in honor of the much beloved president, Theodore president, making its way down Roosevelt.” Then came a sight that the Deseret Main Street. Roosevelt appears News claimed had “never before been seen in to be the figure in the center of Salt Lake”: when the president stood, the this image. entire audience rose to its feet and “rent the air” with cheers and applause that were audible a block away.16 Roosevelt looked over the audience as the ovation finally subsided, acknowledged Wells, and launched into his address.17 Much of Roosevelt’s speech recalled a concept articulated by the historian Frederick Jackson Turner in 1893: that Americans must appreciate their frontier past in order to meet the modern “crisis of democracy.” Roosevelt and Turner agreed that the frontier—and the hardiness required to survive on the frontier—had been instrumental in shaping American institutions and “that mystical entity they both called ‘national character.’”18 The president’s 15

“Tabernacle a Mass of Enthusiastic Humanity,” Salt Lake Herald, May 30, 1903. Ibid. 17 “Tribute to the Pioneers,” May 29, 1903. 18 Richard Slotkin, “Nostalgia and Progress: Theodore Roosevelt’s Myth of the Frontier,” American Quarterly 33, no. 5 (Winter 1981): 608. Roosevelt endorsed Turner’s frontier thesis, even though it seemed to conflict with the thesis of his Winning of the West. Roosevelt considered that Turner’s thesis supplemented and corrected his own writings. See also Brinkley, Wilderness Warrior, 241, for an account of Roosevelt’s speech before the Historical Society of Wisconsin, which Turner attended six months before he delivered his famous thesis. 16

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first statements at the tabernacle acknowledged that his progressive government promised a great deal toward helping conserve natural resources. He then tied the ideal of conservation to the Turnerian concept that the character of the people was a necessary ingredient in the effort to make arid frontier lands “blossom as a rose.” The pioneers in Utah, Roosevelt said, exemplified this ethic. The pioneers and their succeeding generations had not come to Utah to exploit the land and move on. They came to improve the land for their children and grandchildren. Roosevelt alluded to the egalitarian, aggressive, and innovative qualities of these people. They left for their children “an abiding home” and “an enriched heritage,” created not with a “boom growth” but with gradual, sustained growth. The president then connected Utah’s example to the expressed purpose of his western states tour: the conservation of national resources for generations to come.19 Roosevelt praised Utahns for their achievements that were in accordance with progressive ideals. He pointed out that during the past decade the population of Utah had doubled and its wealth had quadrupled—even as its laborers received as high a compensation as laborers anywhere else in the world. Further, he said that although Utah was not known as a mining state, it had produced $30 million in ore the previous year, and its people had paid $5 million in dividends and invested the balance in labor and surplus, again illustrating progressive principles.20 He also mentioned Utah’s agricultural products, such as grains, and its stock-raising industry, including wool, both of which promised to survive long after the depletion of the mines. Roosevelt again referred to the multiple problems of irrigation, natural pasturage, and forests and said that these things needed to be treated uniformly as one resource. This formed a basic tenet of his agenda to preserve, not exhaust, natural resources. He spoke of preserving the land against the few wealthy speculators for the benefit of people who made the land their homes. The question was how to make arid and semi-arid lands produce not only the greatest number of high-quality horses, cattle, and sheep this year, but also for years to come. The range lands should not be overgrazed, but should be treated as a capital investment and managed for prudent growth. He spoke of summer and winter ranges that must be expanded within a complex system that would preserve grazing pastures from over-use. Irrigation was essential not only to stockmen, but to agriculturists as well. The president warned of the dangers of overgrazing in the forests and said, It is and it must be the definitive policy of this government to consider the good of all its citizens—stockmen, lumbermen, irrigators, and all others—in dealing with the forest reserves; and for this reason I most earnestly desire in every way to bring about the operation between the men who are doing the actual business of stock-irrigated agriculture.21

19

“Practical Talk by President at Tabernacle,” Salt Lake Tribune, May 30, 1903. Ibid. 21 Theodore Roosevelt, A Compilation of the Messages and Speeches of Theodore Roosevelt, 1901–1905, ed. Alfred Henry Lewis (Washington, D.C.: Bureau of National Literature and Art, 1906), 454. 20

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Roosevelt—once a stockman himself—did not have to tell an informed audience about the dangers of overgrazing. He admitted he was not sure of the best answer to the problem, and he remained unsettled about what was the best method of solving the issue. The greatest objective of Roosevelt’s forest and land policy was to provide families with a continuous supply of timber, grass, and most importantly, water, not only for their present use, but for future generations as well. “While citizens die, the government and the nation do not die.”22 He emphasized that no matter what policy the government decided upon, it was up to the states to believe in it and sustain it. Without the support of the people of Utah, the policies were doomed to fail. Roosevelt next spoke about the importance of irrigation. He made direct reference to the leadership position that Utah enjoyed over the rest of the nation. “Here the government had to a large degree to sit at the feet of Gamaliel in the person of Utah: for what you had done and learned was of literally incalculable [value] to those engaged in farming and getting through the national irrigation law.”23 In Turnerian fashion, he acknowledged the role of frontier ingenuity in the widespread use of irrigation from the beginning of the Utah Territory. The pioneers developed an irrigation system, Roosevelt remarked, “to a degree absolutely unknown on this continent before.” He commented that the federal government necessarily controlled all the major rivers and streams, but he recognized the concern of farmers that their water source would remain unchanged and promised that no disruption in the water supply would occur. The biggest mistakes, Roosevelt argued, were the decisions hastily made; accordingly, federal officials charged with enforcing the law would move with caution. Again, he referred to the Turnerian principles of “the sturdy courage, the self-denial, the willingness with iron resolution to endure the risk and suffering of the pioneers.”24 He ended with a hearty thank you to Utah from the federal gover nment for all the state had done to advance the causes of protecting the watersheds and to perfecting knowledge of irrigation. The president expounded extemporaneously at several points during his speech, making it much longer—the longest speech of his western tour— and loud applause caused him to pause frequently. When he finished, bedlam returned to the tabernacle, and Roosevelt seemed delighted. He motioned for quiet and then introduced his Secretary of the Navy, William Henry Moody, who spoke briefly. Moody’s comment, “I hope you have in your heart a warm spot for the American navy,” elicited a prolonged applause from the audience, to which he replied, “I see you have.” Utah’s governor, Moody explained, had requested that one of nation’s battleships bear the name of Utah. Again the crowd replied with enthusiasm and again 22 23 24

Ibid., 455. Ibid. Gamaliel was a famous Jewish teacher. Roosevelt’s language echoed that of Acts 22:3. Ibid., 456.

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Moody remarked smartly, “I see you wish it The interior of Thomas Kearns’s too.” The secretary then assured the group mansion. Note, in the corner, the that if the navy could get five new “splendid, hat rack—a gift from Roosevelt to powerful battleships,” one of them would be Kearns. called Utah. 25 The comments of both Roosevelt and Moody bore witness to the changing relationship between Utah and the federal government. With the end of Moody’s remarks, the events at the tabernacle concluded at about 11:30 a.m. Roosevelt climbed back in his carriage and was whisked up to Senator Kearns’s mansion on South Temple Street. Onlookers lined the street, hoping to catch another glimpse of the president, and yet another crowd gathered at the Kearns residence. By then, Secret Service men, policemen, and soldiers completely surrounded the mansion. Roosevelt alighted from the carriage and, with Senator Kearns, climbed the marble steps in front of the mansion, pausing for a brief moment at the top of the stairs to turn around for pictures. Inside, Roosevelt met the senator’s wife, Jennie Kearns, and the party quickly went to the dining room where about twenty dignitaries and guests had just arrived from the tabernacle. A “T” shaped table was set, and the president took his place at the head of the table. With no formal speaking planned, the gathering soon evolved into loud conversation, with the tinkling of glasses and plates. The talk grew animated, with “the president taking the lead” in humorously relating “yarns” from his western tour during the McKinley-Roosevelt campaign.26 25 “Secretary Moody Says Utah Will Be the Name of One of New Battleships,” Salt Lake Herald, May 30, 1903. Roosevelt was a devout disciple of Alfred Thayer Mahan, who took the world by storm with his 1890 publication of The Influence of Sea Power upon History: 1660–1783. 26 “Presidential Breakfast and Guests,” Deseret News, May 29, 1903.

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At 1:30 p.m., the Secret Service passed the word to hitch up the president’s carriage waiting on “F” Street, the signal that Roosevelt was about to leave for the Oregon Short Line Depot. First, however, the president made a quick stop at the Alta Club. When Roosevelt finished at the tabernacle, several city officials, political people, and leading citizens had gathered at the Alta Club in anticipation of a promised visit by Roosevelt.27 A few minutes past 1:30 p.m., Roosevelt’s carriage pulled up to the entrance of the Alta Club, and the president entered the building. Not many people remained, however. A rumor that Roosevelt had gone directly to the depot via 100 South Street had sent the crowd scurrying to the Oregon Short Line station. The few Alta Club members and employees present were treated to a private, albeit short, moment with the president. He shook hands, signed the register, and then left for the depot. A huge crowd surrounded the station when Roosevelt arrived. He conversed with the reception committee and senior officers of the military detachments and then quickly boarded the train for Ogden. It was almost two o’clock in the afternoon. The Roosevelt Special pulled into the Ogden Depot shortly before 3:00 p.m. with Mayor William Glasmann and a welcoming committee of prominent Ogdenites waiting on the platform.28 The scene that took place in Salt Lake City earlier that morning was repeated, this time with Mayor Glasmann replacing Mayor Thompson in the lead carriage. Before the parade commenced, Glasmann leaned over to the president and told him that an assembly of children awaited him in Lester Park and would be honored to hear a few extemporaneous words. Roosevelt replied that “if conditions were favorable, he would say a few words to the children.”29 The parade led off with an automobile brigade. The same military and veterans’ groups—Civil War veterans associated with the Grand Army of the Republic, Spanish-American War veterans, and Rough Riders— gathered to greet the president, only in smaller contingents. Drill teams from the Woodmen of the World joined the veterans and acted as an honor guard behind policemen and sheriffs from Weber County.30 The parade proceeded throughout the city’s thoroughfares, but at Lester Park, the situation became unsettled. From Twenty-fifth Street and Jefferson Avenue, the president’s carriage took a detour through Lester Park, while the rest of the procession continued north on Jefferson Avenue to await the return of the presidential entourage. At the park, children from the public schools, Weber Stake Academy, St. Mary’s School, and the School for the Deaf and

27

“Alta Club Reception to President’s Party,” Deseret News, May 29, 1903. William Glasmann was the owner of Ogden Standard, the major newspaper of Weber County. He served as Speaker of the Utah House of Representatives in 1901, just before he ran for mayor of Ogden. In all, he was elected for three terms as mayor, in 1901, 1903, and 1909. 29 “Children in Lester Park,” Ogden Standard, May 30, 1903. 30 “Radiant City,” May 29, 1903. 28

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This stereopticon image depicted “Utah’s snow-capped mountains and sturdy citizens greeting

LIBRARY OF CONGRESS

President Roosevelt at Ogden.”

Blind gathered with their teachers and parents to for m a sizeable crowd. Behind the students, a large American flag blocked the view. The Secret Service had not received word that Glasmann intended to stop. Instead, the carriage continued along the path that took the carriage out of the park. Glasmann stood up and asked the Secret Service to stop, but the carriage went somewhat further along the path than Glasmann intended. A large, upright flag display caught the attention of the Secret Service agents, and they ordered the car r iage to proceed. Meanwhile, an excited crowd of adults ducked under the ropes and surrounded the carriage, grasping at the president’s uplifted hands. The students and parents were confused at the chain of chaotic events and became exasperated when Roosevelt ordered the carriage to “move on!”31 Glasmann’s planned speech by Roosevelt to the school children was a failure, and a disorderly crowd threatened to end Roosevelt’s visit. A few moments later the president’s carriage emerged from Lester Park, leaving behind many frustrated people. The parade arrived at the center of Grant Avenue a few moments later. Roosevelt turned to Glasmann, apologized for the confusion, and asked the mayor to print his speech in the Ogden Standard. Then Roosevelt and the party of dignitaries climbed upon a substantial platform erected for the occasion. Following a rendition of “Hail to the Chief,” Glasmann welcomed the president to Ogden. Next, Senator Reed Smoot introduced Roosevelt. The senator called him a “statesman and a soldier; a patriot and a scholar.”32 With that, a roar of approval and applause greeted the president. Roosevelt opened with a reference to the beautiful valley as evidence for the wisdom of his irrigation policy. He then used the thriving sugar beet industry as an example of how innovation and irrigation agriculture could yield successful results. He mentioned the National Irrigation Congress 31 32

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“Children in Lester Park,” May 30, 1903. “Radiant City,” May 29, 1903.


scheduled to take place in Ogden that fall. Roosevelt cong ratulated the Utah State Legislature for appropr iating funds to set up such a congress, the first state in the union to do so. He stated there was nothing more important for the growth and well-being of the Rocky Mountain reg ion than ir r igation. Prosper ity and adversity knew no state lines, for “fundamentally, we go up or go down together.”33 The president emphasized that everyone should think not only of his rights but also of his duties to his neighbor, by which he meant every other American, not simply Roosevelt speaking in Ogden. those of the same class or region. He pledged the power of the federal government to accomplish these goals. Citing the proverb that the Lord helps those who help themselves, he stated that neither providence nor the federal government could help with everything. The government could merely give Utah the opportunity to accomplish its own goals. He expressed hope that Utah, and all the other states interested, would make the irrigation congress a success. The president next turned to the internal difficulties America faced because of industrialization. Noting the progressive concern for social and industrial problems, Roosevelt called for cool heads and common sense in dealing with troubles at home and throughout the nation. Further, these complex questions called for new methods. He had acknowledged the presence of Civil War and Spanish-American War veterans—praising them, but especially praising their wives—and he emphasized that Americans must to learn from such veterans how to conduct their peacetime affairs. He pledged his part in doing what he knew his fellow countrymen expected of him. Roosevelt next spoke of foreign relations. The president recalled a proverb he had learned during his cowboy days in North Dakota: “Don’t draw unless you mean to shoot.”34 He said the advice applied to nations as 33 34

Roosevelt, Compilation of the Messages, 457. Ibid., 460.

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well as individuals. America must treat other nations with absolute courtesy and not make claims that it was not prepared to back up. Roosevelt expressed his belief in the Monroe Doctrine and his intent to honor it. Alluding to his embrace of the theories of Alfred Thayer Mahan (an influential advocate of naval power), he said that he planned to go ahead with the buildup of the United States Navy. He argued that the Navy ought to appeal to everyone, including men who live on the plains, in the Mississippi Valley, or on the coast of either ocean. “I believe our interests in the Pacific are such that we need always to be ready to protect them in the Atlantic.”35 With that, Roosevelt introduced Secretary Moody, who again announced the plan to name a battleship USS Utah, if Congress obliged him with what he wanted. Amid raucous cheers and applause, the president bid adieu to Ogden and boarded his carriage for the short two-block ride to the depot. While the president toured Ogden, the Oregon Short Line Engine No. 659 detached from the Roosevelt Special to return to the Pocatello, Idaho, railroad yards. Union Pacific Engine No. 1831, appropriately decorated with flags and bunting, was attached as the pilot engine, with Engine No. 1835 assisting in the uphill pull to Green River, Wyoming. The train was ready and waiting when the president’s party arrived. Roosevelt said goodbye to Glasmann, Wells, Kearns, Smoot, and other dignitaries, and he and his party boarded the train. It was almost five o’clock in the evening. About an hour later, the Roosevelt Express stopped at Echo Junction, where a crowd had gathered in hopes of glimpsing the president. They were not disappointed. Roosevelt emerged at the rear of the train and spoke for a few minutes. After expressing his pleasure at meeting with the people of Echo Junction, the president particularly mentioned the men and women “who came here with babies in their arms.” He had fully enjoyed his day in Utah and remarked that whenever he came to Utah, he was “struck with your prosperity, and with the evidence that it has been won primarily with the character of your men and women. . . . I congratulate you upon the State, but I congratulate you most upon yourselves.”36 The president’s visit was over. It was not his first visit to Utah, or his last. Yet it occurred within the context of critical questions and events. Of prime importance was Roosevelt’s message on irrigation. Equally significant was his acknowledgment that Utah—particularly the Mormon pioneers—had led the nation in irrigation efforts. In the tabernacle, however, he chose his words carefully and avoided mentioning the LDS church at all. Instead, he invoked the principles of Frederick Jackson Turner’s frontier thesis by describing the pioneers as egalitarian, aggressive, and innovative—a characterization that could well apply to the early Mormon settlers. Further, his audience also knew that the Mormons had done much to develop irrigation techniques. 35 36

40

Ibid. “President Roosevelt Bids Farewell to Junction City,” Ogden Standard, May 30, 1903.


Roosevelt argued that private enterprise could not build the dams and canals needed for reclamation in the West; progressives believed this enormous undertaking to be an obligation of the federal government. A year before the president’s Utah visit, on June 17, 1902, Congress had passed the Newlands Act, which established the Reclamation Service (later the known as the Bureau of Reclamation).37 As revolutionary as the act was, Roosevelt knew it needed to be a The three central figures in this joint effort between the government and the image are (left–right) William people; he knew he needed to enlist the Glasmann, Theodore Roosevelt, support of Utah’s experienced irrigators to and Heber M. Wells. make reclamation work. Judging from the response at the tabernacle, he would get what he wanted. The president’s careful omission of the name of the LDS church from his tabernacle speech hinted of another matter. Slightly more than a month before Roosevelt left for the West, Reed Smoot—in his capacity as senator newly elected by the Utah State Legislature—had called on Roosevelt. The president asked Smoot if he was a polygamist, to which Smoot “pledged” that he was not.38 Roosevelt responded that Smoot’s pledge was good enough for him. When hearings began a year later over the matter of seating Smoot as a senator, Roosevelt championed the Utah politician. Without Roosevelt’s support, Smoot probably would have lost his seat. In later years, when Smoot was asked who the greatest statesman he ever met was, he quickly responded with the name of Theodore Roosevelt.39 In his Ogden speech, Roosevelt spoke indirectly of problems with Colombia and the Panama Canal. His reference to the Monroe Doctrine and his use of the cowboy proverb—“don’t draw unless you mean to shoot”—alluded to a policy that became known as the Roosevelt Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine.40 Later that year, Roosevelt confronted the issue 37

Brinkley, Wilderness Warrior, 422–24 M. R. Merrill, “Theodore Roosevelt and Reed Smoot,” Western Political Quarterly 4, no. 3 (1951): 440–53. 39 Ibid. 40 Morris, Theodore Rex, 215. 38

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of Colombia’s rejection of the Panama Canal treaty by supporting a revolution that created the nation of Panama and facilitated the recommencement of work on the canal. Last, but by no means least, Roosevelt had a purpose for announcing the name of the proposed battleship Utah. Since the 1890s, Roosevelt had strongly believed in Mahan’s geopolitical theory of sea power. This theory went hand-in-glove with the president’s plan to complete the Panama Canal. Further, as the former Assistant Secretary of the Navy, he knew the political capital that came with a state having a namesake battleship. At his speech in the tabernacle, and again in Ogden, Roosevelt wanted the excitement of the people to push through his appropriations agenda. Things did not work out according to the president’s plan. Five long years passed before the Navy Department could announce, in May 1908, that it had received approval for two new battleships. Finally, in December 1909, Utah received its christening.41 In both speeches on May 29, 1903, President Roosevelt clearly articulated his progressive political agenda. Still, the enthusiastic response to his speeches indicates that Roosevelt remained popular in Utah midway through his first term. In the 1904 presidential election, that feeling resulted in Roosevelt receiving almost twice the number of votes from Utah than did his Democratic competitor, Charles Fairbanks. Roosevelt’s popularity lasted long after his departure from office on March 4, 1909.42

41 Michael S. Eldredge, “Silver Service for the Battleship Utah: Naval Tradition under Governor Spry,” Utah Historical Quarterly 46, no. 3 (Summer 1978): 302–318. 42 Unlike today, the presence of the President of the United States brought a sense of respect and dignity to the gathering. The majority of the accounts of President Roosevelt’s visit to Utah on May 29, 1903, were taken from four of Utah’s leading newspapers, Salt Lake Tribune, Deseret News, Salt Lake Herald, and Ogden Standard. Almost without exception, they praised Roosevelt and honored his presidency, even though sharp lines divided the newspapers politically.

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Howard Stansbury’s Expedition around the Great Salt Lake: An Examination of the Route and the Maps By JESSE G. PETERSEN

DAVID RUMSEY MAP COLLECTION

W

e find history written in documents—but history is also written on the land. Consider the Great Salt Lake, surveyed by Captain Howard Stansbury in 1849. The resulting map and report shone a light on this little-known area. However, most historical sources have an imperfect nature because they are representations created by limited human beings. In this case, Stansbury’s journals, report, and maps, as well as the land itself, do not always agree. This article offers a tour around the Great Salt Lake with Stansbury’s expedition, using these historical sources and showing where the sources conflict. The land itself, though Howard Stansbury’s “Map of the changed in some respects since 1849, resolves Great Salt Lake and Adjacent Country in the Territory of Utah.” the differences. Jesse G. Petersen spent thirty years in law enforcement, including twenty years as chief of the Tooele City Police Department. He has authored and edited books on the Lincoln Highway, the James H. Simpson expedition, and emigrant diaries.

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In the summer of 1849, Stansbury arrived in what is now the state of Utah to conduct a geographical survey of the Great Salt Lake and the country immediately surrounding it. Stansbury, a civil engineer and a member of the U.S. Army’s Topographical Corps, had previously conducted engineering and surveying projects in the Great Lakes area. Lieutenant John W. Gunnison, also a military engineer, accompanied Stansbury to Utah as his second-in-command. The nineteenth century was a time of exploration in the United States. Much of this was accomplished by private individuals (such as fur trappers and traders) and through business ventures, but the U.S. government was also involved in exploration and surveying. Government-sponsored explorations essentially began with the Lewis and Clark expedition to the Pacific Northwest (1804–1806). Zebulon Pike’s journey to the southwestern region of the current United States soon followed (1806–1807). During the 1840s, the U.S. Army sent John Charles Frémont on several expeditions to learn about the geography of previously unexplored areas of the West. As more and more of the country opened up and settlers began moving to the West, the emphasis began to shift from exploring to surveying, for it was increasingly important to know what was where and who controlled the land. A few months after members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latterday Saints began to settle in the valley of the Great Salt Lake, the Mexican War ended and the United States acquired the area that is now Utah. Just a little over a year later, Stansbury received orders from Colonel John J. Abert, the chief of the Army’s Topographical Bureau, who had the responsibility for the exploration and development of the country west of the Mississippi River. Abert’s orders instructed Stansbury to survey and map the Great Salt Lake valley, locate suitable routes for travel and supply, note natural resources, and observe indigenous tribes and the Mormon settlers.1 This article deals with the journey of exploration that Stansbury made around the western side of the Great Salt Lake. At that time, as far as Euro-Americans were concerned, the area lying due west of the Great Salt Lake was truly terra incognita—and it remains little-known today. A few mountain men, including Peter Skene Ogden and Joseph R. Walker, had traveled through the country on the northern side of the lake, and emigrant parties who had followed the Hastings Road in 1846, 1849, and 1850 had passed by the southern shore of the lake. No one, however, had ever traveled along, or even near, the western shore. Stansbury wrote that he had been told by mountain men and Indians that a number of trappers had attempted to travel around the western side of the lake in search of beaver, “but always without success; the adventurers being invariably obliged to return with the loss of most of their animals.” 1

William H. Goetzmann, Army Explorations in the American West, 1803–1863 (Austin: Texas State Historical Association, 1991), 219; Brigham D. Madsen, ed., Exploring the Great Salt Lake: The Stansbury Expedition of 1849–50 (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 1989), xviii.

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Stansbury planned to fill in this gap, explaining the need to do so as follows: “The expedition was deemed necessary, to enable me . . . to gain some knowledge of the means and appliances necessary to carry on the survey with safety and expedition.”2 In other words, he felt that in order to accomplish his main goal of completing a survey of the lake, he had to know something about the country to the west. Stansbury arrived in Salt Lake City on August 28, 1849, and began meeting with local officials, including Brigham Young; making arrangements to house and feed his men and livestock; and starting the surveying operations. On September 12, with a party composed of several soldiers and at least five Howard Stansbury, the U.S. Army or six civilians, Stansbury left Salt Lake City officer who commanded a military and set off on a trip to Fort Hall, which was survey party that was sent to located on the Snake River in present-day Utah in 1849. Idaho. On the return trip, the party camped on the Bear River just below where it comes out of the narrows between the Cache and Salt Lake valleys. From this base, he began the journey that would take him around the Great Salt Lake. A number of years ago, I became interested in Stansbury’s journey around the lake and began examining the route that he followed. The major sources of information for this study were Stansbury’s personal journal and the report that he submitted to the United States Senate following his explorations and surveys in Utah.3 In both his journal and his report, Stansbury included extensive descriptions of the country he traveled through and the route that his party followed each day. In many instances, these descriptions include his estimates of the distances between certain geographical features along the route. However, it is important to keep in mind that during this trip, all of his distance figures were estimates. Entries in his journal show that during the trip to Fort Hall he used an odometer that was presumably mounted on a wagon, but during the trip around the lake he traveled without wagons and had to rely on estimation. As we shall see, a number of his estimates seem to be well off the mark. Two maps accompanied Stansbury’s report to the Senate. The first covers 2 Howard Stansbury, Exploration of the Valley of the Great Salt Lake (Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1988), 97. 3 Stansbury’s original journal is located in the National Archives in Washington, D.C., but selected portions of it appear in Madsen’s Exploring the Great Salt Lake. The Smithsonian reprinted his original report in 1988 as Exploration of the Valley of the Great Salt Lake.

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the area between the Missouri River and the Pilot Range, which is located along the Utah–Nevada border; it is entitled “Map of a Reconnoissance between Fort Leavenworth on the Missouri River and the Great Salt Lake.” The second map, entitled “Map of the Great Salt Lake and Adjacent Country,” is drawn to a larger scale and covers only the area between the Wasatch Mountains and a point just west of the Newfoundland Mountains.4 According to information that is found on the maps, Stansbury directed their preparation with the aid of Gunnison and Albert Carrington; Charles Preuss and Gunnison did the actual drawing. The scholar Carl I. Wheat stated that Gunnison apparently “had primary responsibility in the construction of the map.”5 Carrington’s personal journal indicated that in early 1851 he was in Washington, D.C., engaged in “plotting” various locations for the maps. For example, on February 8, 1851, Carrington wrote, “laid Fremont Isle into general map & it fitted exactly.”6 The nature of Preuss’s responsibilities remains unclear. Wheat also suggested that Stansbury’s maps relied heavily on “the composite Frémont map” but had been “elaborated in certain areas on the basis of more intensive investigation.”7 Notably, of the four individuals involved in making the maps, only Stansbury participated in the actual expedition around the lake. Of critical importance to this study is the fact that both of Stansbury’s maps have lines on them that were intended to show the route that the party followed. An in-depth comparison of Stansbury’s day-by-day journal entries and subsequent report and the route of the expedition as it is depicted on his maps has convinced me that, in a number of instances, the trail on the maps does not correspond with Stansbury’s descriptions of his route. I fully realize that challenging the accuracy of these historic maps is not something to be taken lightly, but the discrepancies are so profound that I have had to conclude that either Stansbury’s descriptions or his maps have some serious flaws. After considering two facts—that Stansbury wrote his descriptions every day, on location, while those who drew the trail lines were not members of the party—I have concluded that where differences exist, the route shown on the maps must be incorrect. Further, I also found that two of the mountain ranges on Stansbury’s maps were misplaced to some extent. The mapmakers placed the Newfoundland Range approximately ten miles too far to the north and the Silver Island Mountains about eight miles too far to the east. These errors apparently contributed to the trail being drawn through the center of the Newfoundland Mountains, rather than passing by their northern tip. 4

These maps are available in Madsen, Exploring, rear insert, and on several Internet sites. Carl I. Wheat, Mapping the Transmississippi West, 1540–1861, vol. 3, 1846–1854 (San Francisco: Institute of Historical Cartography, 1958), 118. 6 Madsen, Exploring, 750. 7 Wheat, Mapping, 118. 5

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During the several years that I was investigating the Stansbury expedition, I made several extended trips into the general area of the route in order to observe the terrain firsthand. I quickly learned that it is not possible to simply get on the trail and follow it all the way from the Bear River to the Pilot Mountains. The route simply does not exist as a continuous drivable route. For example, a securely locked gate bars the way along the western shore of the Promontory Mountains. The extensive mud flats that lie between the Newfoundland and the Silver Island mountains create another inaccessible section. But other than these two places, I made my way into the general area of most of the expedition’s route. At this point, the reader might very well ask why it is important to know that the expedition followed a route that did not exactly match the trail that is shown on the maps. For many people, the fact that the expedition went on one side or the other of a certain mountain might not seem important to the outcome of the mission. But on the other hand, there are others who have a deep interest in knowing, as closely as possible, the exact routes that the early western explorers traveled. When they look at a map or travel through an area of historical importance, they value knowing where explorers and other earlier travelers were and what they experienced. From a historical standpoint, these discrepancies demonstrate that the creator of a historical source is influenced by place, time, and perspective. They show that the more sources used, the more complete and accurate the picture of the past is. And finally, for those who love Utah’s geography and the layers of history on the land, this investigation into Stansbury’s route will deepen their sense of place and past. We will now begin to follow Stansbury’s route around the lake, first through excerpts from his journal and report, and then through my interpretations of how his descriptions compare with the landscape and the trail on his maps. On the accompanying maps, dotted lines depict the route that I believe Stansbury actually followed. The dashed lines represent my adaptation of the trail as it is shown on Stansbury’s maps. Stansbury and all of the members of the Fort Hall expedition left the base camp on the Bear River sometime during the afternoon of October 19, 1849: JOURNAL: Having completed my preparations, accompanied the provision wagons from the encampment 2 ½ miles above the ford of Bear River, to this ford, saw them safely over the stream & on their way to Salt Lake City. . . . Turning to the S.W. followed the emigrant trail to Oregon & California about four miles which brought us to the crossing of the Malade.8 REPORT: From the ford of Bear River we followed the emigrant road westward for about four miles, which brought us to the Malade River.9

The groups apparently split up at or quite near the site of what later 8 9

Madsen, Exploring, 173. Stansbury, Exploration, 98.

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became known as Hampton Ford. The major portion of the Fort Hall expedition, with all of the wagons, crossed the river and headed south for Salt Lake City. Stansbury headed west with his smaller exploring party, which, as he indicated in his report, consisted of “five men and sixteen mules.”10 However, in his journal, Stansbury listed the names of six people, in addition to himself, who belonged to the party: Dr. James Blake, August Archambault, August Tison, Piche, Boyer, and Louis Rivard.11 Blake was a physician and naturalist whom the army employed to accompany the survey party. Archambault, a mountain man who had traveled with Frémont in 1845, acted as a guide for Stansbury. Note that a conflict exists between the journal and the report in regard to the direction of travel. The journal says that the group traveled southwest along the emigrant trail, but the report states that their direction of travel was west. An examination of the local topography shows that the report was in error. If the party had traveled directly west from Hampton Ford, they would have reached the Malad River after traveling only 1.6 miles, rather than the four miles mentioned in both the journal and the report. But by heading in a southwest direction, they could have traveled four miles before reaching the Malad at a point just east of the present-day community of Garland. After a difficult crossing, the party made camp on the west bank of the river. During this day’s journey, we encounter the first major discrepancy between the route drawn on the map and the written sources. Although both the journal and the report state that the party followed the emigrant road while traveling between the Bear and the Malad rivers, the map shows that Stansbury’s trail left the emigrant road at the Bear River and was approximately a mile south of the emigrant road when it reached the Malad River. The emigrant road that Stansbury referred to was a section of what was known as the Salt Lake Cutoff, which at that time was used by California-bound emigrants traveling between Salt Lake City and the California Trail. REPORT: October 20 . . . Continued on the emigrant road about four miles, when we left it and turned more to the southward. . . . In about a mile we came upon three or four beautiful springs of clear, bright water: they were gushing out from a rocky point . . . and unite to form a branch which runs southward some miles, and then sinks in the sand, before reaching the lake.12

From the crossing of the Malad River, the emigrant road continued in a 10

Stansbury, Exploration, 98. Stansbury never mentioned the names of the other members of the party. One of his field notebooks, which is published in Madsen’s book, contains a list of the civilian members of the main body of the surveying team. Archambault is spelled Archambeau; Tison is spelled Tesson; Piche is listed as Louis Piche; and three Boyers are listed as Nelson, Sid, and Vide. According to this list, regardless of whether there were five or seven members, Stansbury was the only military person on the expedition around the lake. Madsen, Exploring, 10, 174. 12 Stansbury, Exploration, 98. 11

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slightly southwest direction to make its way Bear River to Salt Spring. On this past the souther n tip of Point Lookout and following maps, a dotted line Mountain. Although Stansbury recorded that represents the route Stansbury he followed the emigrant road for four miles, described in his reports and his Great Salt Lake map shows the route as journals, while a dashed line being well south of the emigrant road. represents the route shown on Stansbury also wrote that upon leaving the his maps. emigrant road he turned to the south and traveled another mile and came to some brackish springs. His Great Salt Lake map identifies this feature as Emigrant Springs. This spot is now known as Salt Spring and is located at the foot of Point Lookout. The springs are the source of a creek that flows to the south. On the maps, the trail is located approximately two miles south of the springs and does not show a turn to the south in this area. If Stansbury had followed the trail that is shown on the maps, he would have missed the springs entirely. REPORT: Following down this stream for several miles, we struck on a succession of bare, level plains, composed of white clay and mud, with occasional pieces of limestone and obsidian scattered on the surface.13

The stream that comes out of Salt Spring is known as Salt Creek and it flows in a slightly west of south direction for about five or six miles and then enters the Salt Creek Waterfowl Management Area. The trail that is shown on the maps does not follow the stream at all, but crosses it at a point about two miles south of Salt Spring and continues in a generally westward direction until it comes to the eastern base of the Promontory Range. JOURNAL: In the afternoon being fearful of being caught without water, turned farther to the west & made for the foot of the range of hills constituting the western boundary 13

Ibid., 99.

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of the Valley, when we came upon a small stream running slowly to the south with marshy banks. It is about 15 ft wide & 1 foot deep, quite salt & almost unfit to drink. Having no prospect of finding better however we encamped on its right bank for the night. . . . Days travel estimated at 22 miles.14

The party’s route through the swampy area that lies to the south of Salt Spring is somewhat uncertain, but it probably skirted the western side of Little Mountain and then crossed today’s Salt Creek Waterfowl Management Area. Stansbury noted that at some point during the afternoon, the party “turned farther to the west” and headed toward the Promontory Mountains.15 Though Stansbury did not provide a definite time or a mileage estimate, it appears that the party had been traveling mostly south since leaving Salt Spring and that by turning more to the west, they would have begun heading in something of a southwest direction. I have worked out a route through this area that has the party traveling twenty-two miles during this day’s journey; on this possible route, the spot where they made the turn is in the vicinity of Hull Lake, about sixteen miles from the previous night’s campsite. However, this turn to the southwest does not appear on the trail that is shown on Stansbury’s maps. At sixteen miles from the campsite, the trail on the maps heads almost due west, and when it does make a turn, it is to the south. Additionally, the trail on the maps does not cross “a succession of bare, level plains, composed of white clay and mud,” nor does it ever come to “a small stream running slowly to the south.”16 Maps of this area show several small, unnamed drainages, but only one that appears to be large enough to match Stansbury’s description of the stream where they stopped. The most likely spot for this campsite is about 6.8 miles directly south of the junction of State Route 83 and State Route 102, and 4.5 miles east of the unpaved road that follows the eastern base of the Promontory Mountains. This drainage runs in a slightly east of south direction; the water probably flows infrequently. JOURNAL: Oct 21—We struck diagonally for the foot of the mountain still travelling over the hard dry mud . . . Before reaching the base of the hills some Indians were discovered, . . . As we came along we passed their encampment, . . . Following down at the base of the hills for about two or three miles encamped on a small spring branch, . . . At the spot where we left the Indian Camp there is a spring with plenty of water but it is brackish & bad. Days travel about 8 mils.17 REPORT: October 21 . . . There being neither grass nor water at this point, we left it early, and made in a south-west direction for the foot of the mountain, travelling over a hard, even surface of dry mud, as level as a floor and without a particle of vegetation of any kind. Before reaching the base of the hills, we descried some Indians at a distance, who as soon as they discovered us, commenced a most rapid and precipitate flight. . . .

14

Madsen, Exploring, 174. Ibid. 16 Stansbury, Exploration, 98; Madsen, Exploring, 174. 17 Madsen, Exploring, 175. 15

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Following down the eastern base of the promontory for about two miles, we encamped on a small spring-branch, coming down from the mountains, furnishing very tolerable water and plenty of grass.18

Salt Spring to Sweetwater Spring.

If the group had traveled on the trail that is shown on the maps, at twentytwo miles from the Malad River they would have been near the eastern base of the Promontory Mountains, and if they had then begun to travel in a southwest direction, they would have been climbing into the mountains, not crossing a level plain. The Indians’ camp was probably at Sweetwater Spring, which is located only a few yards from Promontory Road, a graded dirt road that runs north and south along the eastern base of the Promontory peninsula. At this spring, for the first time since leaving the Bear River, the trail that is shown on the maps finally begins to coincide with the party’s route as it was described by Stansbury. From Sweetwater Spring, the party turned south and followed a route that would have been the same, or nearly the same, as today’s unpaved road. The campsite for the night of October 21 was probably at the mouth of Choke Cherry Canyon. During the following three days the party traveled along the shoreline of the Promontory peninsula, first continuing south, then rounding Promontory Point, and then heading north along the peninsula’s western side. Late in the evening of October 24, they approached the northeast corner of Spring Bay and an area known as Salt Wells Flat. 18

Stansbury, Exploration, 99.

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R EPORT : October 24 . . . At ten o’clock we Salt Wells Flat. reached a small sluggish stream, containing some water entirely too salt for our use, but which the poor animals drank with great avidity, having been without for more than twelve hours. Here we lay down for the night, both man and beast much fatigued with the day’s march.19

Since it was already dark when they reached the stream, Stansbury was unable to get any real sense of the terrain until the next morning. REPORT: October 25 . . . We had an opportunity this morning of seeing fully the ground over which we had passed the night previous. It consisted of an oval flat of clay and sand, some four or five miles broad from east to west. . . . Three streams came down from this low ridge, and, flowing to the southward, either sank into the sand or discharged themselves into the lake, which we now judged to be some six or eight miles to the southward, the flat extending in that direction to the water’s edge. Two of these streams (all of which were salt) we crossed without much difficulty; but the third, on the western side of the flat, was impassable, and we had to ascend it for three miles before we could obtain a crossing.20

Three small streams flow in a southwest direction through Salt Wells Flat. Finding that they could not cross the third stream, the party turned to the northeast and made their way upstream until they came to the vicinity of Salt Wells, where they found a place to cross. Here again, the trail that is depicted on the maps does not correspond with Stansbury’s description of the route. Even though Stansbury mentioned three streams, the map shows 19 20

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only two; further, the map shows that the trail crossed the northernmost stream at the point where it first reached the stream, rather than changing directions and following it upstream, as Stansbury described. JOURNAL: Crossing over to the western ridge we crossed its summit & descended into a plain somewhat similar to the last in form only much more extensive in all directions & forming at no time any part of the Lake but only an extended plain or valley.21 REPORT: Leaving it [Salt Wells Flat] behind us, we ascended a ridge to the west of it, two or three miles broad. . . . Descending its western slope, we came into another plain, somewhat similar to the last in form, but much more extensive in all directions.22

Once they had crossed the third stream, Stansbury’s group turned to the northwest; after traveling about five and a half miles, they crossed the summit of a wide pass between the southern end of the Hansel Mountains and Monument Peak, which Stansbury identified as “Teton” on his Great Salt Lake map. After crossing the third stream at the point where Stansbury said they could not cross it, the trail on the map continues almost straight ahead along the eastern side of Monument Peak and rejoins the actual route near the summit of the pass. At the northern foot of the pass the party turned to the west and began traveling across Curlew Valley. Near the western side of this valley, at a point about nine miles northeast of the old railroad town of Kelton, the routes separate again, and this separation marks the beginning of the most serious discrepancy between Stansbury’s descriptions of the route and the trail that is shown on his maps. The route that Stansbury’s party actually followed began to veer slightly to the south, while the trail on the maps continues west for another six to eight miles, and then begins a long sweeping curve that eventually heads south. REPORT: Over this desolate, barren waste, we travelled until nearly dark, when we reached a rocky promontory, constituting the southern point of a low ridge of hills jutting into the plain from the north. . . . The mules having been without water or grass the whole day, and our stock of the former being insufficient to give them even their stinted allowance of one poor pint, we halted for a couple of hours, and drove them upon the side of the mountain to pick what they could get from the scanty supply of dry bunch-grass that grew in tufts upon its side.23

At the western edge of Curlew Valley, the group came to the southern tip of the Wildcat Hills. These low hills lie to the east of the Raft River Mountains and about eighteen miles to the southwest from the town of Snowville. The southern point of these hills is marked by several small knolls that rise sharply out of the surrounding terrain. It was here that Stansbury and his party stopped for about two hours in order to give their animals a chance to rest and to graze on the scattered bunchgrass. JOURNAL: We loaded up again & continued on in hopes of finding water. . . . Rode on until nearly eleven o clock, in a southward direction about ten miles, when finding the 21

Madsen, Exploring, 179. Stansbury, Exploration, 104–105. 23 Ibid., 105–106. 22

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indications of water growing worse & the mules nearly worn out, halted for the night on top of a ridge, & bivouacked on the ground.24 REPORT: At eight o’clock we replaced the packs upon our mules . . . and rode on till near midnight by the light of the moon, in a south-westerly direction, over a country similar to that we had traversed during the day; when, finding the indications of water growing less and less promising, and that our animals were nearly worn out, we halted, and covered with our blankets, we lay down on the ground till morning.25

Although Stansbury’s journal notes that they traveled in “a southward direction” for ten miles, this could not be correct because that would have put them in the lake or on the swampy mud flats, depending on how high the lake level was at that time. But by traveling in a southwest direction (as the report notes), they would have passed very close to the now-abandoned site of Kelton and then climbed into the foothills of Baker Mountain. When they reached what Stansbury described as a ridge, they stopped and made camp. Today, a fairly well-travelled dirt road known as 8560 North heads in a southwest direction from Kelton and climbs into the eastern foothills of Baker Mountain. Stansbury’s party probably followed this same general route. The point at which this road crosses the eastern ridge of these hills is about thirteen miles from the southern tip of the Wildcat Hills. In his journal, Stansbury stated that they had traveled about ten miles, but considering the fact that they had been traveling in the dark, this error can be considered as minimal. In this area, Stansbury’s maps lack much detail, and even though the summit of Baker Mountain rises over 1,200 feet above the level of the flats around Kelton, the maps show the entire area as a level plain. JOURNAL: Oct 26 Started in the morning in search of water for the mules without which we could not go any farther. By the spy glass discovered some willows & grass which looked as if there might be water. Directed our steps thither, & after some search found a small spring coming out from under a bank. This we cleared out, dug a hole to contain its waters, & soon had plenty of excellent water for all.26 REPORT: October 26 . . . Sweeping the horizon with a telescope, I thought I discovered something that looked like willows to the north-west, distant about four or five miles. Reanimated by this gleam of hope, we saddled up quickly and turned our steps in that direction. We soon had the lively satisfaction of finding our expectations confirmed; for, arriving at the spot, we found, after some search, a small spring welling out from the bottom of a little ravine, which having with some labour been cleaned out, we soon enjoyed a plentiful, most needed, and most welcome supply of excellent water for all. The whole party being much exhausted from their long abstinence and unceasing exertions, we halted here for the day.27

The wording in the report makes it sound as if Stansbury was still at the campsite when he sighted the willows, but this presents a problem. If he 24

Madsen, Exploring, 180. Stansbury, Exploration, 106. 26 Madsen, Exploring,180. 27 Stansbury, Exploration, 106. 25

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was still at the campsite, all he could have seen Wildcat Hills to the Hogup to the northwest would have been the bulk of Mountains. Baker Mountain. However, the journal entry states that he was “in search of water,” which suggests that he was no longer in the immediate area of the campsite when he spotted the willows. If this search had taken him less than a mile to the west, he would have come to the ridge of the mountain and would have had a clear view to the northwest and the Dove Creek drainage area. Stansbury was aware that willows can indicate the presence of water, and he decided to investigate this possibility. Leaving the ridge where they had camped, the group circled around the southern foothills of Baker Mountain and reached Dove Creek at a point near its confluence with Cotton Creek. The distance traveled would have been about four and a half miles. It should be noted that the trail on the maps would have crossed Dove Creek at a point somewhere within two or three miles upstream from where the party found the spring. However, that trail would have been traveling in a southwest direction when it reached the creek, rather than northwest, as Stansbury suggested. JOURNAL: Oct 27—Started early sun 1/2 hour high, ascending a ridge for about two miles, struck across a large sage plain in the direction of a high peake on a ridge, to the left of which we passed.28 REPORT: October 27 . . . Resuming our journey, we took a course south by east, which led us past the ridge upon which we had halted two nights before. . . . We then passed along the base of a range of low hills, composed apparently of trap and basalt. After

28

Madsen, Exploring,180.

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travelling ten miles, we came to a range of higher hills extending northwest and southeast.29

A section of the Hastings Road, which Stansbury followed to

What Stansbury’s party did upon leaving Salt Lake City. He would have the campsite on Dove Creek represents the passed this point just before most critical factor in my theory of the expe- reaching the Grayback Hills. dition’s route. If they had traveled south from This image conveys the austerity this area, as the maps indicate, their route of the land through which would have taken them well to the west of Stansbury and his team traveled. the Hogup Mountains. But Stansbur y described a route that went in a southeast direction and took them to the eastern side of the Hogup Mountains. In his journal, Stansbury wrote that when they left camp on the morning of October 27, they climbed up a slope for about two miles. Further, in his report he stated that they traveled in a southeast direction and passed by the ridge where they had camped on the night of October 25. This route would have taken them up and over Baker Mountain’s southern foothills. Soon after crossing today’s 8560 North, they would have come to an area that fits Stansbury’s description of a “sage plain.” Upon reaching the eastern edge of this plain, they would have skirted the base of some low hills of volcanic origin, composed of “trap and basalt.” In his journal Stansbury mentioned a “high peake on a ridge, to the left of which we passed.” Madsen wondered if this peak was either Table Mountain or Peplin Mountain, but it is quite certain that the party’s route would have been to the right, rather than the left, of both of these peaks.30 Their route was probably along the southern edge of a large cove-like area known as the Hogup Bar. Immediately to the south of this area there is a relatively high butte that makes up the northernmost point of the Hogup Mountains. The party’s route would have been to the left of this butte, 29 30

56

Stansbury, Exploration, 107. Madsen, 180, n. 58.


HOWARD STANSBURY

which at its highest point is about a thousand feet above the surrounding terrain. Stansbury also noted in his report that they had reached this place after traveling ten miles. My plot of the most likely route through this area measures just ten miles. A quick look at a map of this area will show that the shortest route to Pilot Peak, which is where the party eventually ended up, would have gone southwest from the camp on Dove Creek. Why then did Stansbury decide to travel in a southeast direction? The answer to this question must lie in Stansbury’s priorities at that time and the likelihood that he was not yet desperate enough to divert from those priorities. The major objective of the expedition was to travel around the Great Salt Lake, staying as close as possible to its shoreline. Apparently, on the morning of October 27, Stansbury wanted to get back to the lake. A route to the southeast would take him there. The following day, Stansbury encountered circumstances that persuaded him to change his mind about traveling along the shore of the lake. REPORT: We then passed, in a southerly direction, through deep sand, along what at one time had been the beach of the lake, as drift-wood was frequently seen lying on the sands that stretch out to the eastward for many miles. In one instance a drifted cottonwood log was seen, lying near what had evidently been the water-line of the lake. . . . On our right was a high ridge or promontory, with a narrow bottom sloping down to the edge of the flat. . . . The country today has been similar to that passed over previously—dry, barren, and entirely destitute of water. We dug a well some five feet deep in the edge of the flat, which soon filled with water. The mules crowded around the hole, and seemed to watch the process of our labour, as if sensible of the object of our exertions, but upon tasting the water, refused to drink, although they had been travelling the whole day without a drop. Day’s march, about sixteen miles.31

Today, a narrow zone covered by a heavy growth of greasewood, or salt brush as it is sometimes called, extends along the entire length of the eastern base of the Hogup Mountains. If the same growth existed in 1849, it is quite certain that the party would have avoided this heavy vegetation by traveling along its eastern edge. This would have put them in the “deep sand, along what had at one time been the beach of the lake.” Stansbury was describing the wide western beach of the Great Salt Lake. After reaching this ancient beach and turning to the south, they traveled for about six miles and then made camp on the edge of the sand. It appears to me that this campsite was about seven miles northwest of Dolphin Island. Stansbury mentioned passing numerous pieces of driftwood. It is unlikely that they would have encountered driftwood if they had been to the west of the Hogup Mountains. JOURNAL: Oct 28—There being no water, it became imperative on us to keep moving . . . Followed the edge of the sand with the promontory on our right for some miles when

31

Stansbury, Exploration, 107.

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we ascended it, . . . Then crossing ridge we descended into a plain or sort of bay extending to the north some twenty miles partly covered with sage & partly to the west with mud & salt. It appeared to be bounded on the west some 20 or 30 miles distant by a high ridge running north which was I think the same near which we encamped on Friday.32 REPORT: October 28 . . . We were on the road very early, and followed for several miles, down the edge of the sand at the foot of the range of hills on our right, when we ascended it, taking a course south-west by west. . . . The ridge was about five miles wide, stretching off to the southward, and about five hundred feet above the level of the beach.33

Stansbury’s journal implied that the group was traveling between the lake and the eastern base of the Hogup Mountains. As they approached the southern end of the mountains, the party made a turn to the southwest and climbed over the ridge, crossing it at a point about a mile to the north of Broom Mountain. The location of the ridge that Stansbury mentioned in the above entries is a key element in determining the actual route of the expedition. Stansbury’s maps show the trail going about halfway down the eastern side of what he called “Rocky Ridge” and then abruptly turning to the west, through the mountain. It is quite evident that his Rocky Ridge is today’s Newfoundland Mountains. It appears that most people who have studied Stansbury’s expedition have relied on his maps rather than his descriptions; they have assumed that when he mentioned the ridge that he crossed on the 28th, he was referring to Big Pass, which is located near the center of the Newfoundland Mountains. However, it is my conclusion that in this area the maps are in serious error, and Stansbury’s party did not go through Big Pass. There are a number of reasons for this conclusion, and we will get to them later, but for now we will continue to follow the route as described by Stansbury. JOURNAL: The plain seemed to contain several Island mountains or hillocks rising from it as from the water. To one of these distant about 12 miles, &S W by West we directed our course, over sage at first & then the usual mud plains. We arrived here about 1 ½ hour before sundown and stopped to get supper & give the mules a chance to pick a little grass. . . . The mountain at the foot of which we stopped extended some miles to the South & S.W. The Dr ascended it but could see no signs of the Lake in any direction. This point was about 20 miles from our starting point in morning.34 REPORT: Leaving the ridge, we entered upon a plain or sort of bay, partly covered with artemisia [sagebrush], and partly (to the westward) with mud and salt. . . . The plain contained several island mountains, rising from it as from the water. To one of these, distant about twelve miles south-west by west, we directed our course and reached it about an hour before sunset. Here we stopped for a short time to prepare our scanty supper, and to give the mules a chance to pick a little grass, which was scarce and dried up. Not a drop of water had we met with the whole day. . . . The rocky island, at the

32

Madsen, Exploring, 180–81. Stansbury, Exploration, 107–108. 34 Madsen, Exploring, 181. 33

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north end of which we halted, extended many miles to the southward, and was apparently surrounded on all sides by the mud-plain. One of the party ascended it, but could see nothing of the lake, nor any appearance of water in any direction.35

Hogup Mountains to Pilot Peak. On this map, unlike the other maps pictured in this article, the dashed line does not conform to

From the ridge near Broom Mountain, the alignment of the trail as it Stansbury would have had a clear view of the appears on Stansbury’s map. Newfoundland Mountains, the Silver Island Instead, it has been adjusted to Mountains, and Crater Island, all of which are conform to the actual geography surrounded on all sides by extensive mud of the area. flats. He would also have been able to see the Pilot Range, rising to the west of these “island mountains.” After crossing the ridge Stansbury recorded that they traveled in what he called a “southwest by west” direction and came to one of the islands. Stansbury clearly stated that they stopped at the north end of an island that extended many miles to the south.36 The Newfoundland Mountains run almost exactly north and south, for about eighteen miles. He also noted that the distance from the ridge to the spot where they stopped was about twelve miles. The actual distance from Hogup Ridge, just north of Broom Mountain, to the northern tip of the Newfound Mountains is 14.8 miles—which, under the circumstances, would not have been a significant error. JOURNAL: It now became a serious point to find water for the mules, who had been without two days & a night. I accordingly determined to go on during the night as far as possible so as to be able to reach the Western ridge bounding this basin as early as possible the next day. . . . We accordingly loaded up & proceeded on the same course, across a mud & salt plain quite soft in some places which made the travelling quite

35 36

Stansbury, Exploration, 108. Ibid.

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heavy. The mules were very weak & tired & the whole party were on foot nearly the whole march. We continued on until 12 at night when we encamped on the north side of a small isolated butte of Volcanic rock, having just before crossed a very soft muddy drain with water in it, but as salt as brine. . . . To the north & to the south of us rose a butte similar in character to the one near which we encamped. The southern of which had evidently formed part of a Crater.37 REPORT: We accordingly saddled up about dark and proceeded on the same course, directing our steps toward another island in the plain, which appeared to be about fifteen miles distant. . . . Our course lay over a flat of damp clay and salt mud, in many places soft and deep. . . . We continued on until after midnight . . . when we reached a small isolated butte, which was only a pile of barren rocks, with scarce a blade of grass upon it. . . . On each side of us, to the north and the south, was a rocky island or butte, similar in character to the one near which we had halted, but much larger.38

Significantly, Stansbury stated that they continued to travel “on the same course” that they had been following before stopping for their supper. Thus their direction of travel would have continued to be west-southwest. After traveling twenty-two miles, rather than the fifteen that Stansbury estimated, they came to a stop at the base of a small butte. Stansbury wrote that to the north of their campsite was a larger butte and to the south there was an even larger one that contained a crater. There can be little doubt that they were at the northern end of Crater Island, which lies to the north of the Silver Island Mountains. At the northern end of Crater Island there can be found a small isolated knoll, which at its highest point is about three hundred feet above the surrounding mud flats. About a half mile to the south is a smaller knoll, and then, immediately to the south, is the main part of Crater Island. According to Stansbury’s description, the party’s campsite was near the northern base of the smallest knoll. REPORT: October 29.—On awaking early, we found the mules gathered around us, looking very dejected and miserable. . . . Before us, indeed, lay the mountain where we hoped to find both food and water for them, but between lay a mud-plain fifteen or twenty miles in extent, which must be crossed before we could reach it. I was much afraid the animals were too weak to succeed in the attempt, but it was our only hope. We set out, the whole party on foot, pursuing the same general course of south-west by west that we had followed yesterday. . . . We soon came upon a portion of the plain where the salt lay in a solid state, in one unbroken sheet, extending apparently to its western border. . . . At two o’clock in the afternoon we reached the western edge of the plain, when to our infinite joy we beheld a small prairie or meadow, covered with a profusion of good green grass, through which meandered a small stream of pure fresh running water, among clumps of willows and wild roses, artemisia and rushes. . . . Both man and beast being completely exhausted, I remained here three days for refreshment and rest. . . . We had encamped at the eastern base of a range of high mountains, stretching a great distance to the north, and terminated, three miles below, in an abrupt escarpment, called Pilot Peak.39 37

Madsen, Exploring, 181–82. Stansbury, Exploration, 109. 39 Ibid., 109–111. 38

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HOWARD STANSBURY

From the north end of Crater Island the Near the east side of the Silver party traveled in a southwest direction, cross- Island Mountains. Stansbury ing the mud and salt flats that lie between the passed by this location on his Silver Island Mountains and the base of Pilot way from Donner Spring to Peak. Stansbury estimated that the mud and Salt Lake City. salt flats between the Silver Island Mountains and Pilot Peak were “fifteen or twenty miles in extent.” This section of the Salt Flats is about twenty miles in length. By crossing the flats in a southwest direction, the party traveled eleven miles before reaching the western edge of the flats. At that point they made camp at a good spring and decided to stay for a few days. One might be tempted to assume that they were now at Donner Spring, but they were still some distance north of that location. Charles Kelly, an early trails researcher and Utah historian, identified the spot where they camped as McHouston Springs.40 Unfortunately, I have been unable to find any further information relating to a spring of this name, and there are at least a dozen springs in the first few miles to the north of Donner Spring. However, in his journal entry for November 2, Stansbury wrote that it was two and half miles from this campsite to Donner Spring. Based on this information, it would appear that Kelly’s McHouston Springs was probably two and a half miles north of Donner Spring, where a spring and a well can now be found at the lower end of a drainage channel known as Bettridge Creek. This small, intermittent stream could have been the one that Stansbury observed meandering through the willows near his campsite. The final discrepancy between Stansbury’s description of the route and 40

Charles Kelly, Salt Desert Trails (Salt Lake City: Western Epics, 1996), 132, n. 4.

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the maps concerns the area between Crater Island and Pilot Peak. The trail on Stansbury’s “Fort Leavenworth to the Great Salt Lake” map skips the McHouston Springs campsite entirely and runs in a direct line from the north end of Crater Island to Donner Spring. However, in his writings, Stansbury noted: JOURNAL: Nov 2 The course from camp is East, but we followed the edge of the bay South 2 – ½ miles to a point where a road from Mormon city crosses to take advantage of the beaten track as the mud is quite soft. At this point there are several excellent springs & numerous company of emigrants have lately encamped there.41 REPORT: November 2 . . . Following the western edge of the mud-plain at the foot of the range for three miles, we came to the southern point of the mountain. . . . The route from Salt Lake to this point was first taken by Colonel Frémont, in 1845. A year afterward, it was followed by a party of emigrants under a Mr. Hastings.42

Upon leaving camp on November 2, the party travelled south until they reached Donner Spring. After a brief stop at the spring, they turned to the east and proceeded on their journey. Because the party’s journey from Donner Spring to Salt Lake City involved no new exploration and simply followed Hastings Road, the route of which has been well established by numerous trails researchers, our examination ends at this point. Before ending this investigation of Stansbury’s route around the Great Salt Lake, it might be useful to take a closer look at the arguments against Stansbury’s crossing of Big Pass—for while Stansbury’s maps clearly show the trail going through Big Pass, I contend that Stansbury’s party did not cross Big Pass. My reasons for this belief follow. First, consider Stansbury’s description of the ridge itself: “The ridge was about five miles wide, stretching off to the southward, and about five hundred feet above the level of the beach.”43 A measurement taken across the Hogup Ridge just north of Broom Mountain gives us about six miles compared to Stansbury’s estimate of five miles, but the distance across Big Pass is only two and a half miles. The point where I believe Stansbury crossed Hogup Ridge stands about 400 feet above the level of the beach. Big Pass is 720 feet above the mud flats that surround the Newfoundland Mountains. Although neither elevation is the same as Stansbury’s 500 foot figure, the Hogup Ridge elevation is much closer to it. Then there is Stansbury’s use of the word “beach.” There is clearly a sandy beach at the eastern base of the Hogup Mountains, while mudflats surround the Newfoundland Mountains on all sides, with no beach in sight. Second, while on the ridge, Stansbury noted that about twelve miles to the southwest, an island rose out of the plain. If Stansbury had been on Hogup Ridge, he would have been looking at the Newfoundland Mountains, the northern tip of which would have been fourteen miles 41

Madsen, Exploring, 183–84. Stansbury, Exploration, 112–13. 43 Ibid., 108. 42

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from the ridge. However, if he had been at Detail of Stansbury’s “Map of a Big Pass, the only “island” visible to the Reconnoissance,” with additions. southwest would have been the Silver Island The broken lines have been Mountains, whose eastern tip would have added to show the actual shape been nearly twenty miles away. and location of the Newfoundland Third, due to their misplacement of the and Silver Island mountains. Newfoundland Mountains, the expedition The superimposed dotted line maps depict Crater Island as lying in a southwest direction from Big Pass. Modern maps, shows Stansbury’s actual route. however, plainly show that the northern tip It is quite apparent that the of Crater Island is almost due west from Big misplacement of these mountains Pass. This is significant because Stansbury contributed to the inaccurate indicated that his party followed the same depiction of the expedition’s “south-west by west” course for the entire route. distance between the ridge and the base of the Pilot Mountains. If you go southwest from Big Pass you end up at the base of Cobb Peak in the Silver Island Mountains, not at the northern end of Crater Island and not at Donner Spring. Fourth, if Big Pass was the ridge, an entire mountain has gone missing. Stansbury stated that after crossing the ridge, the group traveled to an “island mountain,” stopped for supper, and then continued on to Crater Island. This means that there was a mountain between the ridge and Crater Island. No mountain, however, exists between Big Pass and Crater Island. In summary, examining Stansbury’s descriptions of the route his expedition followed after crossing a ridge on October 28, 1849, yields no evidence that Big Pass was that ridge. On the other hand, everything that

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Stansbury wrote supports the concept that they crossed Hogup Ridge and then pursued a straight-line course to the base of the Pilot Range, passing the northern tips of the Newfoundland Mountains and Crater Island as they did so. Of course it is impossible to consider this information without wondering how it could have happened. What could have caused these discrepancies in the layout of the trail? Certainly, a serious lack of communication must have existed between those who participated in the expedition and those who created the maps. Moreover, it seems quite clear that of the five or seven men who made the trip around the lake, only Stansbury had any involvement in the preparation of the maps. The question then becomes, by what method did Stansbury communicate the information about the location of the trail to Carrington, Gunnison, and Preuss? Did they first draw the maps with the lake, the rivers, and mountains in place, and then have Stansbury point out the trail? Did Stansbury give them written information about the trail? Did they have access to his journal and his report? Unfortunately, answers to these questions are apparently unavailable. Further research might provide some of the answers, but for now, we can only wonder. None of this, however, should detract from Stansbury’s significance and from his accomplishments. As William Goetzmann wrote of Stansbury’s journey around the lake: “It had been a daring feat of exploration; succeeding where the mountain men had all failed, and by means of his map of the western portion of the lake Stansbury had painted at least one more bold stroke into the unfinished portrait of the national landscape.”44

44

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Goetzmann, Army Explorations, 222.


SALT LAKE CITY POLICE DEPARTMENT

When Salt Lake City Became Hollywood: The Premiere of Darryl F. Zanuck’s Brigham Young By JAMES V. D’ARC RONALD L. FOX, PHOTO EDITOR

Tyrone Power and Linda Darnell, romantic leads in Brigham Young, interact with Officer George H. Volkert during a parade celebrating the film's premiere.

S

tar-studded movie premieres— complete with searchlights, parades, and studio-generated ballyhoo—or iginated in 1922 when the legendary theater entrepreneur Sid Grauman opened his Egyptian Theater on Hollywood Boulevard with

James V. D’Arc curates the BYU Motion Picture Archive and directs the BYU Motion Picture Archive Film Series; he is the author of When Hollywood Came to Town: A History of Moviemaking in Utah (2010), now in its updated second edition. He may be contacted at james_darc@byu.edu. Ronald L. Fox owns a public affairs business in Salt Lake City. He is an author, historian, and collector of early photographic images, U.S. presidential material, and material related to political history of Utah.

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the DouglasFairbanks swashbuckler, Robin Hood. Eighteen years later on a warm, late-August evening, that event was eclipsed by the festivities connected with the world premiere in Salt Lake City of a Twentieth Century Fox production, Brigham Young. In 1938, Darryl F. Zanuck, the head of production at Fox, seized upon the drama of the founding of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the LDS or Mormon church). A junior studio writer had submitted a treatment dealing with the Mormon founder Joseph Smith, his martyrdom in 1844, the persecutions that drove his followers out of the Midwest, and the founding of Salt Lake City, culminating with the 1848 “miracle of the gulls” that helped save the Mormons’ crops from decimation by crickets. Zanuck favored subjects steeped in Americana, and he linked this inherently American saga to the contemporary persecution of Jews by the Nazis. Zanuck engaged the novelist Louis Bromfield to fashion a screen story and purchased the rights to Children of God (1939), by the Idaho author Vardis Fisher. Zanuck’s enthusiasm for the story led him to personally supervise the story conferences, the casting, the choice of director Henry Hathaway, and even the final editing process. Brigham Young had a budget of nearly two million dollars, making it one of the largest studio productions of 1940. In fact, Zanuck cast his two biggest stars—Tyrone Power and Linda Darnell—as the romantic leads. Surprisingly, given the status of his lead performers, Zanuck put all of the story emphasis on the title role of Brigham Young. For that reason, he wanted to feature a relatively unknown actor as the Mormon prophet. After dismissing casting suggestions that included Walter Huston, Albert Dekker, and Spencer Tracy, Zanuck found his Young in the stage actor Dean Jagger. The thirty-six-year-old Indiana native had scored big on Broadway, but had enjoyed less success in Hollywood movies. Yet Jagger’s authoritative delivery of dialogue and his physical stature, which closely resembled the Brigham Young of the 1840s, convinced Zanuck of his ability to handle a meaty role. Vincent Price, well before his typecasting as a horror star, gave a brief, but powerful portrayal of Joseph Smith. Mary Astor played Mary Ann, Young’s “favorite” wife; the finished film showed four of the prophet’s wives. The veteran character actor John Carradine was a standout as a lively and humorous Porter Rockwell. Brigham Young was distinguished by the fact that most of it was filmed away from Hollywood on location in California’s Big Bear mountains, near Elko, Nevada, in southwestern Utah, and in Lone Pine, California, where PREVIOUS PAGES: A band, a contingent from the United States Navy, newsreel cameras, and thousands of Utahns wait at the Salt Lake City Municipal Airport to greet the celebrities. Before they departed for downtown Salt Lake City, the stars and studio officials participated in a short program at the airport. Note the many vehicles at the perimeter of the airfield, an indication of the response to this event.

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MOTION PICTURE STILLS COLLECTION, PERRY SPECIAL COLLECTIONS, BYU

Fox Studio celebrities—all smiles, at least for the camera—aboard one of the two twentyone-passenger DC-3 airliners that the studio chartered from United Air Lines for the premiere of Brigham Young. Harry Brand, Fox’s publicity director, sits in the first visible row. A moustached Caesar Romero, whom the studio was currently promoting as the Cisco Kid, and the child star Jane Withers are in the next row back. Brenda Joyce, another Fox contract performer, sits behind Romero. Dean Jagger, who played the title role in Brigham Young, is across from Joyce; Virginia Zanuck, the wife of the studio boss Darryl F. Zanuck, is behind her. Sixteen-year-old Linda Darnell stands in the aisle. Darnell co-starred in Brigham Young as Zina, “the outsider.”

more than fifty log cabins were built to replicate early Salt Lake City against the dramatic backdrop of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. The climactic invasion of seagulls that saved the pioneer settlement from destruction was filmed on the shores of Provo’s Utah Lake. Together with the studio publicist Harry Brand, Zanuck decided to open Brigham Young in Salt Lake City, the headquarters of the church that numbered nearly 700,000 members at the time—most of whom lived along the Wasatch Front. LDS church president Heber J. Grant was all in favor of Zanuck’s plans, as he, along with his counselors David O. McKay and J. Reuben Clark, had watched an advance showing of Brigham Young at the Studio Theater in Salt Lake City three weeks before the premiere. It was an unqualified success. “I thank Darryl F. Zanuck for a sympathetic presentation of an immortal story,” declared Grant afterwards. “I endorse it with all my heart and have no suggestions to make for any changes. This is one of the greatest days of my life. I can’t say any more than ‘God bless you.’”1 What most church members did not know was that Grant and the LDS apostle John A. Widtsoe had advised Zanuck and his writing team 1

“High L.D.S. Officials Preview ‘Brigham Young’,” Salt Lake Tribune, August 14, 1940.

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The stage actor Dean Jagger earned himself a seven-year contract with Twentieth Century Fox as a result of his performance in Brigham Young. A decade later, he received an academy award as “best supporting actor” in Twelve O’Clock High (1949).

A smiling Mary Astor, who played Mary Ann Young, leads the group arriving from Hollywood for the opening of Brigham Young. The others are Ken Murray; Nancy Kelly and Brenda Joyce, contract starlets whom the Fox studio was eager to promote; Tyrone Power, who played Jonathan Kent, “the Mormon scout”; and Darryl F. Zanuck, the head of production at Twentieth Century Fox. Zanuck took on Brigham Young as one of his few personally produced motion pictures for 1940.

UTAH STATE HISTORICAL SOCIETY

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MOTION PICTURE STILLS COLLECTION, PERRY SPECIAL COLLECTIONS, BYU

BRIGHAM YOUNG

Hollywood notables emerge from a DC-3 airliner to greet the thousands gathered to see them at Salt Lake City’s Municipal Airport on August 23, 1940. From left to right, they are Ken Murray, unidentified, Tyrone Power, Darryl F. Zanuck, Nancy Kelly, Gregory Ratoff, Brenda Joyce, and Mary Astor. Murray acted as the master of ceremonies at five theaters that evening.

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MOTION PICTURE STILLS COLLECTION, PERRY SPECIAL COLLECTIONS, BYU

MOTION PICTURE STILLS COLLECTION, PERRY SPECIAL COLLECTIONS, BYU

MOTION PICTURE STILLS COLLECTION, PERRY SPECIAL COLLECTIONS, BYU


Back row, left to right: Ken Murray, Nancy Kelly, Mary Astor, Tyrone Power, Dean Jagger, Linda Darnell, Caesar Romero. Front row: Darryl F. Zanuck, Jane Withers, Jean Rogers, Brenda Joyce, and Gregory Ratoff. Rogers played Clara Young, Brigham Young’s second wife in the film.

Dean Jagger, Mary Astor, and Tyrone Power before the microphone at Salt Lake City’s Municipal Airport moments after their arrival on the MOTION PICTURE STILLS COLLECTION, PERRY SPECIAL COLLECTIONS, BYU

afternoon of August 23, 1940. Tyrone Power and Linda Darnell wave to the crowd at the parade’s starting point, Temple Square in Salt Lake City. Mayor Ab Jenkins drives them. Out-of-town A Salt Lake City radio reporter covers the arrival of Tyrone Power and Linda Darnell at the airport as a powerful late August gale threatens to remove their hats. Salt Lake

premieres, complete with parades and appearances at multiple theaters, were rare at this time in the movie industry. Seven theaters sold out for the opening night of Brigham Young.

City’s mayor, David Abbott “Ab” Jenkins, is seen at the wheel of his “Mormon Meteor.” A few hours later, the movie stars rode in Jenkins’s famous car for the parade in downtown Salt Lake City.

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throughout the screenwriting process and gave their approval to the finished storyline. Widtsoe even took Louis Bromfield on a five-day automobile tour of Utah when Bromfield was preparing his story treatment.2 The August 23, 1940, world premiere (dubbed “Brigham Young Day” by Governor Henry H. Blood), began with the arrival of Zanuck, Bromfield, the principal stars, and the studio personnel on two chartered DC-3 airliners. One source estimated that Salt Lake City’s usual population of about 150,000 swelled to over 200,000 for the gala parade down Main Street that afternoon. All of the Salt Lake City Police Department motorcycles were necessary to break a path through the packed sidewalk-to-sidewalk crowd. Power and Darnell led the way atop Mayor David Abbott “Ab” Jenkins’s “Mormon Meteor” race car. Dean Jagger and his wife rode in another vehicle, as did Darryl Zanuck and Governor Blood. Zanuck, meanwhile, also used the event to give a boost to his up-and-coming stars Jane Withers, Caesar Romero, and Brenda Joyce. The parade began at the Brigham Young statue and proceeded down Main Street, then across Fourth South, and up State Street to the Lion House, where that evening Grant hosted the Hollywood dignitaries to a buffet dinner before the premiere.3 Initially, two Salt Lake City theaters were sold out weeks in advance for the premiere, with the Centre Theater serving as the anchor venue. However, interest rose dramatically as the opening day approached. By Friday, August 23, seven theaters were sold out to nine thousand patrons, and this at the increased ticket price of $1.10 (in contrast to normal admission Tyrone Power, Fox studio’s biggest star, shares a moment with the director and sometime actor Gregory Ratoff. They are backstage at Salt Lake City’s Center Theatre before making their first of four appearances on premiere night, August 23, 1940. Darryl Zanuck’s emphasis on Brigham Young and the epic trek in Brigham Young resulted in rather colorless roles for Power and his co-star, Linda Darnell.

2 Detailed in James V. D’Arc, “Darryl F. Zanuck’s Brigham Young: A Film in Context,” BYU Studies 29, no. 1 (Winter 1989), 5–23. 3 “Salt Lake Offers Welcome to Screen Visitors,” “Premiere, Parade Honor Utah Founder Today,” “Salt Lake City to Become Glittering Capital of Film World for Premiere Showing of Pioneer Epic ‘Brigham Young’,” Salt Lake Tribune, August 23, 1940.

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prices of forty to sixty cents). This established a Jane Withers was a popular record for the number of child actress under contract theaters sold out for a simultaneous premiere with Twentieth Century Fox. screening. Ken Murray emceed the visits of She first appeared in Bright Power, Darnell, and Jagger, first to the Centre at Eyes (1934) with the studio’s seven o’clock p.m. and then to four other theaters. shining light, Shirley Temple. The Fox Movietone Newsreel of the day, narrated Fox let both Temple and by Lowell Thomas and shown in theaters nationwide, heralded the premiere events as unprece- Withers go in 1942, as age dented against film footage of a Main Street began to limit their attraction as child stars. In this image, jammed with star gazers.4 While Brigham Young’s high budget and publicity Withers meets with young costs—and the loss of lucrative foreign markets fans in her room at the Hotel with the start of World War II—prevented it from Utah. br inging in the financial returns for which Zanuck had hoped, the critical response to the film was virtually all positive. Life magazine chose it for its “movie of the week” and devoted several pages to a photo spread about it. A Los Angeles newspaper reviewer called Brigham Young “one of those rare distinguished motion pictures which makes up in two hours for every sin of mediocrity committed in Hollywood. . . . [It] is the best Twentieth Century-Fox production since Grapes of Wrath and a credit to the entire industry.”5 Other reviewers immediately picked up the connection between the film’s dramatic and sometimes gruesome depictions of persecutions of Mormons and the atrocities visited against Jews by Nazis in Germany. In addressing some criticisms of the film by his own church members, Grant took time at the beginning of 4 Formal studies calculating how many theaters have simultaneously sold out on a premiere night are rare. However, in thirty years of research, I have never read of another premiere with seven sold-out theaters. 5 Louella Parsons, Review, Los Angeles Examiner, August 21, 1940.

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his October 1940 general conference address Linda Darnell, Jane Withers, and to remind the faithful that “There is nothing Brenda Joyce—all dressed for a in the major movie premiere. picture that reflects in any way against our people. It is a very marvelous and wonderful thing, considering how people generally have treated us and what they have thought of us.”6 All of this occurred over seventy years ago, when Utah was on the verge of becoming a movie production location that would soon rival any filming site other than Hollywood and perhaps New York City. In a culture not usually associated with parties, Salt Lake City put on the one of biggest movie premieres ever.

6 Heber J. Grant, “Gratitude for Faith of People,” One Hundred Eleventh Semi-Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Salt Lake City: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1940), 96. Grant’s address was reprinted on the “Editor’s Page,” Improvement Era 43 (November 1940): 654.

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BOOK REVIEWS With Golden Visions Bright Before Them:Trails to the Mining West 1849–1852. Overland West: The Story of the Oregon and California Trails, vol. 2. By Will Bagley. (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2012. xxi + 464 pp. Cloth, $45.00.)

IN THIS AMBITIOUS STUDY, Will Bagley examines the routes taken by emigrants bound for the California gold fields. Near its end he notes that stories are not history. Professors, he adds, have been telling us this for one hundred years. It is a cheerful, bald statement that begs the question, what exactly is history? This book—a cumulative effort that combs hundreds, perhaps thousands of accounts, and shapes them into prologue, event, and consequence—offers a clear answer. Late in the book, Bagley admits that “nothing conveys the reality of crossing the plains as well as the story of someone who made the trek,” and proceeds to give a compelling, six-page account of the sufferings of the Oregon-bound diarist Chloe Ann Terry and her family and friends. The remarkable thing is that he does not do this more often. Many historians, having set themselves to a task of this magnitude, would use perhaps a dozen representative figures and families to elucidate places, themes, and big events. Instead, Bagley draws on hundreds of narratives. In a single paragraph, he might mention the experiences of six or eight different people, unknown to each other but connected by geography, motive, or timing. What he loses in narrative drive by using this technique, he more than gains back by delivering a profound sense of the diversity of the people, events, and landscape on the trails during the peak years of the gold rush. All kinds of people made the trek, for all kinds of reasons; all kinds of tribal people did or did not resist the migration, for all kinds of reasons; all kinds of landscapes were deeply changed by what happened. These are generalizations, but by the end of the book they have taken on rich meaning from Bagley’s careful marshaling of vast armies of facts. For example, at various points he provides emigrants’ descriptions of the small lakes and marshes of the Humboldt Sink, where the Humboldt River disappears into the Nevada desert. The place is full of waterfowl. From account after account, we come to understand that by this point in the trip all the travelers were low on rations and often weak from scurvy, and the surviving mules or oxen were likewise exhausted. The travelers still had the worst part of the trip to go—across the Forty-mile Desert or the Black Rock Desert to one of three main routes over the Sierras, one of which was bad and two of which were considerably worse. The Humboldt Sink and other watered places like it in the Great Basin had drawn Paiute, Bannock, and Shoshone people for centuries to hunt birds and cut cattails for food and arrow shafts. Now, quite suddenly, tens of

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thousands of white travelers were rolling through the middle of the country every summer, their animals eating all the grass and the people fouling the water supply. These tribes obtained a substantial part of their diet from roots and tubers; Anglos had called them Diggers and held them in murderous contempt since fur-trade times. The Natives began a kind of guerilla war against the emigrants, stealing or wounding their cattle in order to force the travelers to abandon the animals, after which the Indians slaughtered and ate them. The contempt grew, and emigrants often chased and killed the thieves. By this point in Golden Visions, Bagley has lined up enough evidence to succinctly link culture clash with ecological change: “Violence escalated as natural resources declined” (364). Bagley makes a few important arguments in this book. First, the California gold rush was the first time in U.S. history when people genuinely believed they could get rich quick, “a strange faith that was virtually unknown before” (xvii). A few did, though many more died trying. Most of the emigrants were single men or married men traveling without their families. They had no intention of staying in California, but only of making a pile and then returning home to a lifetime of wealth and ease. Their attitude—their eager dreams—changed us as a nation. Second, if the trails journey itself was extremely difficult for the emigrants, its consequences were ruinous for the tribes who lived in the West already. As testament to this, Indians appear in Golden Visions almost entirely through the accounts of others, as very few of their own accounts survived. Finally, California development patterns spread across the West through the mining and mineral rushes—rushes that became key to boom-and-bust economies. In the nineteenth century, gold was “discovered” along routes— in the Sierras, at Pikes Peak, in southwest Montana, in southwest Idaho, at South Pass, and in the Black Hills of Dakota—where its presence had been known for some time. The rushes came only after someone who planned to profit from the rushers loudly publicized the “discovery.” In 1849, around 30,000 hopefuls made the trek to California by land, ten times the number that had already taken the route since overland emigration began in the early 1840s. Bagley devotes nearly half the book, the first four of ten chapters, to detailed descriptions of the trails as the emigrants found them, based on the three hundred firsthand accounts of the 1849 crossing that survive. The fifth chapter concentrates on shortcuts and cutoffs; the sixth on the troublesome Lassen Cutoff into northern California; the seventh on trails events of 1850, when around 50,000 people crossed; the eighth on 1851, when traffic on the trails nearly ceased altogether; and the ninth on 1852, the busiest year of all. The final chapter draws conclusions about greed,

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gold, and settlement, how the trails that began and enabled the gold rush were in turn changed drastically by its events. Golden Visions is the second of four volumes the University of Oklahoma Press plans to issue in Bagley’s history of the overland trails. The third will cover 1853–1860 and the fourth 1861–1870. I look forward to both. In the first volume and again in this one Bagley works hard—and successfully—to be neither booster nor debunker, to simply say what happened and what choices people made, so that we may better understand the choices that face us in our time. The California gold rush, he argues, was second only to the Civil War in its effect on the nation in the nineteenth century. The trails made the rush possible and then quickly spread its effects. To call this book a story of a place and time would be to undersell it. It is much more than that—it is a big, good history, with all the troubling insights, complexity, and understanding those words imply. TOM REA WyoHistory.org

“A Peculiar People”: Anti-Mormonism and the Making of Religion in Nineteenth-Century America. By J. Spencer Fluhman. (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2012. 229 pp. Cloth, $34.95.)

THE FIRST THING ONE NOTICES in picking up this book is the dust jacket—the devil, pitchfork in hand, is kicking Joseph Smith into the air. Smith’s broad-brimmed hat and cane have flown from his grasp, but he still has his gold bible tucked tightly under his arm. Taken from the frontispiece of Eber D. Howe’s Mormonism Unvailed (1834), this image is the first visual representation of Mormonism and depicts a supposed Smith family story of the Mormon prophet with his famous book, being kicked while running from Satan. The publishers have colored Howe’s black-andwhite woodcut so that the midnight blue background contrasts dramatically with the red devil and the golden bible. The image is worth the price of the book. The original must have delighted early anti-Mormon writers, for it looks as if even the devil saw Mormonism as a fraud. In this slim but densely written volume, Spencer Fluhman has immersed himself in nineteenth-century anti-Mormon literature. This allows him to trace how Protestants, the dominant religious authority in the antebellum United States, came to define the nature of religion and to weigh all belief systems against their own orthodoxy. “Critics first found Mormonism to be a fake religion, then an alien or foreign religion, and finally a merely false one” (9). The chapters follow this pattern: the first and second cover those

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who denounced Mormonism as a fraud and delusion; the third and fourth explore polygamy and Protestant ideas of civilization, which revealed Mormonism as alien; and finally, the last treats the post-polygamy period, when critics found Mormonism partially acceptable but still mostly false. “This study,” writes the author, “is thus less a history of the Latter-day Saints than it is a history of the idea of religion in nineteenth-century America” (10). With its focus on religion, it is also not the definitive word on anti-Mormonism, for other studies remain to be written on political and cultural anti-Mormonism. With the American Revolution, the United States cast off both British colonialism and an established church, but the resulting religious freedom came with a price of great uncertainty among the leading Protestant churches about how to deal with new religious upstarts. Americans believed that “true” religion, by which they meant Protestantism, was critical to America’s strength. And conversely, religions from outside cultures or disturbing movements within America could harm the country. Making themselves the arbiters of what was true religion, anti-Mormon writers quickly linked Joseph Smith to figures they viewed as imposters, especially Muhammad, even before the announcement of polygamy. Smith’s Book of Mormon, like the Qur’an, was viewed as counterfeit. The Mormon gatherings to Missouri, Nauvoo, and then Utah were made parallel to the Muslim pilgrimage to Mecca. Mormon militarism brought to mind the image of Muhammad on a charging horse with the sword in one hand and his holy book in the other. Polygamy, the establishment of the Mormon kingdom in the West, and the faith’s theocratic and military ambitions confirmed for anti-Mormon writers that the church was religiously and culturally alien. Polygamy was the radical marker of Mormonism’s foreignness, and when that was finally eliminated, Protestants were at somewhat of a loss as to what to make of the faith. “With polygamy and theocracy presumably in the past, Mormons of the 1890s suffered more from near-omission than from wide-eyed alarm” (139). My one criticism of this seminal work is that several of the illustrations, taken mostly from period political cartoons, are too small in scale to read the text in them. That aside, this inquiry into how American Protestants came to define religion is an exceptional and well-researched study, one I can highly recommend. POLLY AIRD Seattle, Washington

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The Indianization of Lewis and Clark, 2 vols. By William R. Swagerty. (Norman: Arthur H. Clark Company, 2012. 778 pp. Cloth, $90.00.)

THE LEWIS AND CLARK EXPEDITION has occupied the imagination of Americans since their return in 1806 and into the twenty-first century. While much of the scholarship produced about Lewis and Clark has focused upon the historical narrative of the expedition, this two-part volume by William R. Swagerty offers a riveting and thorough analysis— which Swagerty frames as “Indianization”—that utilizes anthropological theory. The title and thesis of this study center around the work of the anthropologist A. Irving Hallowell and his employment of the term Indianization (10). In essence, Indianization was a process in which the men of the Lewis and Clark expedition adopted Native ways and practices along their journey, making them their own. Thus, Indianization became evident in the men’s physical appearance and in their use of everyday items. Swagerty’s work seeks “to demonstrate that the men were profoundly transformed and the potential for a different understanding of the Indian impact on America was revealed” (46). The author asserts that Indian peoples had a greater impact upon the expedition and American society as a whole than has been previously understood by historians. The first chapter provides an overview of the cultural history of each man making the journey. The analysis begins with the first U.S. census and explores the “cultural hearths” of the men who composed the Corps of Discovery, in order to better understand the societies in which they lived. This becomes an important foundation for the remainder of the book because it serves as the starting point for understanding how these men became “Indianized.” The second chapter explores the interactions between Indians and non-Indians, highlighting the relationships between the Indians and the French as an example of a Euro-American people who experienced a level of Indianization. The subsequent nine chapters, topically organized, analyze how “the ‘known’ technological world changed considerably as Indians’ ways and techniques were developed” (149). One prominent marker of this change occurred with the adoption of moccasins by the explorers. In addition, diet and medicines were altered as the Corps incorporated foods and plants used by Indian peoples. These adaptations made travel easier and allowed the explorers to find subsistence along the way as opposed to having to bring and carry innumerable supplies. Swagerty argues that the men’s diets became almost completely Indianized. He concludes with the aftermath of the expedition and explores the return of the Corps of Discovery to the eastern United States. The Lewis and Clark expedition made notable contributions to science, culture, and American Indian diplomacy.

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The most impressive aspect of this study is its creative use of primary sources. Swagerty grounds his analysis in the journals of Lewis and Clark, focusing his attention on the Indian perspective contained within the journal entries. This monograph will serve those scholars interested in the American West, the Lewis and Clark expedition, Euro-American identity, and the influence of indigenous peoples upon the cultural and social landscape of America. ELISE BOXER University of Utah

Mapping Mormonism: An Atlas of Latter-day Saint History. Edited by Brandon S. Plewe, S. Kent Brown, Donald Q. Cannon, and Richard H. Jackson. (Provo, UT: BYU Press, 2012. 272 pp. Cloth, $39.95.)

IN 1981, I CAME ACROSS An Atlas of Utah. This book was a geographical treasure trove of maps, facts, figures, and histories of the state of Utah. I had never seen such a wonderful book, and I spent hours looking at the maps and reading the accompanying text. I saw the state from perspectives that I had not even thought about before. The book was a marvel. It gave me an appreciation for geographical research and its ability to teach. Over the years (too many of them), I have waited for a new edition of this work, but it has not come. Then last year Mapping Mormonism appeared. Though it is not a replacement for the Atlas of Utah, it is nonetheless a wonderful application of the principles and concepts used in the Atlas, and on a topic that, like Utah, I have a great interest in. The book has united the research and writings of sixty scholars in geography, history, and economics to provide a sweeping view of the history of Mormonism. More than an atlas, it has fascinating timelines and informative charts. The sixty-plus authors have produced fine pieces of scholarship, but the editors have done an equally terrific job of compiling this research into a book that is organized, structured, and crisp. Though the authors are mostly professors from Br igham Young University, there are scholars representing other universities, the Catholic Church, and the Community of Christ, along with independent writers. The book is divided into four main sections: “The Restoration,” “The Empire in the Desert,” “The Expanding Church,” and “Regional History.” The book is filled with information you would expect, but also with unexpected insights. Who knew, for example, that the explosion of Mt. Tambora in the Dutch East Indies (now Indonesia) might have influenced Joseph Smith Sr. and Lucy Smith to move their family from Vermont to

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western New York? This gigantic eruption sent volcanic ash into the air, cooling summers for several years in the early 1800s and prompting thousands to move from the New England states to more promising areas. Other pages are equally interesting. A world map accompanied by a timeline at the bottom of one page shows when and where the Latter-day Saint scriptures have been translated into other languages for worldwide use. Impressive maps and timelines of the New York, Ohio, Missouri, and Illinois periods allow the reader to see these periods in a spatially fascinating way. The much-analyzed missionary work of the early Quorum of Twelve Apostles is shown, including Orson Hyde’s trip to the Holy Land. Mapping Mormonism presents an informative snapshot (with some admitted imperfection) of plural marriage as it lists the percentage of families who did or did not practice polygamy in communities from St. George to Logan— with Paris, Idaho, and the Muddy River Mission in Nevada thrown in to boot. “The Expanding Church” opens with maps of the world and the United States on the bottom third of the page and a linear graph on the top two-thirds of the page that shows by year, from 1900 to 2010, the total membership; annual increase; annual growth rate; and number of missionaries, stakes, and temples in the LDS church. In summary, the authors and editors of Mapping Mormonism have made an impressive achievement. It is colorful, arresting, and educational in a way that would attract a student with the shortest attention span. The writing is generally clear and concise, and the graphics are easy to follow and understand. Needless to say, I really liked this book and can now put to rest my anxiety of not having a wonderful atlas that can truly educate and inform in an attention-grabbing way. To the authors and editors: well done! MICHAEL E. CHRISTENSEN Office of Legislative Research and General Counsel State of Utah

Pregnancy, Motherhood, and Choice in Twentieth-Century Arizona. By Mary S. Melcher. (Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 2012. x + 248 pp. Cloth, $50.00.)

IN THIS WORK, Mary Melcher details how the differences imposed on humankind by race, culture, religion, government, and economic status can be considered not only hindrances to women’s physical ability to give life but also to women’s power to control that ability. In 1912, 69 percent of Arizona’s inhabitants lived in rural areas with 2,500 people or fewer. This meant little or no infrastructure, lack of professional medical care, economic struggles, and disadvantages due to race. All of these factors contributed to

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the fact that Arizona had one of the highest infant mortality rates in the nation, as well as other struggles regarding womanhood and choice. While describing the difficulties faced by Arizona women in the twentieth century and making the case for the need of choice and control, Melcher also advances the insight that the ability to provide life is the one thing that joins women together—despite race, culture, religion, government, or economic status. She argues, further, that through childbearing, women share another commonality: the ability to choose. Melcher fills her work with examples of this commonality. In the 1950s Euro-American women blurred socioeconomic lines by assisting the less prosperous Mexicans or African Americans in getting access to birth control resources through a Tucson birth control clinic. Women of faith banded together with the support of ecclesiastical leaders willing to think unconventionally, such as the Reverend Michael D. Smith, a Presbyterian campus minister at the University of Arizona in 1971. Smith declared that because women were created in God’s own image, it was therefore part of a woman’s divine nature to decide how and when to have children. Melcher also focuses on the irony of government involvement in women’s reproduction—being willing to make the choice for women through legislation while denying them the opportunity to choose. Though Melcher certainly focuses on Arizona, she incorporates historical details about other western states not only to back up her research but also to provide an overall picture of this aspect of western women’s history. This is especially true with regard to Utah. The author details the Utah and Mormon perspective on womanhood, motherhood, and choice throughout the book. In 1940, for instance, Utah shared Arizona’s high birthrate, but it had a lower infant mortality rate. As factors in this lower mortality rate, Melcher notes the medical training of some of Utah’s women, both as doctors and midwives, as well as the success of the LDS Relief Society. She also notes the geographical clustering of settlements along the Wasatch front as a factor. Given the fact that the majority of Utah’s population was centered in and around Salt Lake City, this is understandable. Melcher’s reliance on statistics alone, however, does open the door to the question of rural communities in Utah between Salt Lake and St. George, such as mining towns, where the Mormon church was not as prominent. Did these areas suffer from the same high infant mortality rates as Arizona? Did the lack of infrastructure negatively affect women’s ability to get quality care? How did Utah’s ethnic minorities fair? Though an in-depth study of these questions was obviously not within Melcher’s scope, a comparison between rural Utah and rural Arizona is warranted. There are moments when Melcher seems to discredit women’s personal convictions and the influence of religious or cultural beliefs on decisions regarding motherhood, pregnancy, and choice. She notes the Catholic and

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Mormon religious perspective, as well as the Navajo cultural perspective, that reproduction is a matter for a higher power to decide. Her tone suggests that women from these traditions would surely choose family planning over nature if they were not under such ecclesiastical or cultural sway, as if these women were somehow lacking intelligence for following personal conviction based on faith or tradition. Part of Melcher’s thesis outlines the “pattern of change” of women’s reproduction in the twentieth century, as illustrated by the shift in the late 1960s and 1970s regarding sexuality. Likewise, she adds historic context about why Roe v. Wade occurred when it did and why it was received or rejected so passionately. While the ability to give life once provided common ground for Arizona women, the sexual liberation of women did not have the same unifying effect. Hence, the emergence of two separate distinct groups: pro-life versus pro-choice. Melcher’s passion for her subject is evident, but she maintains an objective voice throughout Pregnancy. The fifty-three pages of endnotes bear witness to Melcher’s extensive historical research, as do the variety of sources. Current events, such as the debate over an age restriction of access to the “morning after” pill, add force to her general subject matter, giving it increased relevance not only historically but contemporaneously as women continue to define their place in various cultures and defend their freedoms with regard to reproduction. HEIDI ORCHARD Utah Division of State History

Butch Cassidy: Beyond the Grave. By W. C. Jameson. (Lanham, MD: Taylor Trade Publishing, 2012. 187 pp. Cloth, $22.95.)

THE NOTED AUTHOR and treasure hunter W. C. Jameson has just completed his second book on famous outlaws (Billy the Kid was the first) and their “bigger than life” legend. In this case he features the Utah native Robert Leroy Parker, otherwise known as Butch Cassidy. Jameson’s well-researched book provides an analytical approach to the hypothesis that Butch Cassidy did not really die in a shootout in Bolivia. He gives plenty of examples that Butch returned to the American West “beyond the grave.” Jameson draws from many different authors as he traces Butch’s life from his origins to his path across the West, until his imprisonment in Wyoming. He follows the later adventures of Butch and the Wild Bunch and their deeds across the West, and then covers the voyage of Butch and the Sundance Kid (Harry Longabaugh) to South America. Here with Etta Place they established a nice ranch and went “straight” until the Pinkerton

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Detective Agency discovered them; they eventually returned to the outlaw trail. Unfortunately, while Jameson cites respective authors on these various incidents, he does not include specific pages in his footnotes, which would have been a nice addition for other researchers. Jameson argues that because credible records do not exist, there is only scanty evidence that the two outlaws died in the shootout at San Vicente and were buried there. He puts forth twelve points that raise doubts about the identities of Butch and Sundance and other American outlaws who were possibly operating in South America. He states that it was not until publication of an article by Arthur Chapman twenty-two years after the shootout, based on the information Chapman obtained from Percy Seibert, that most people came to believe that the people killed were Butch and Sundance. Following Chapman’s article, many folks stepped forward to dispute his assertion that Butch was dead. Jameson presents numerous accounts of people who claimed to have seen and visited with Butch after he returned to the American West. He presents the evidence of these various accounts, including a purported visit to the Parker family home. Some people believed that the man who penned the manuscr ipt “The Bandit Invisible”—William T. Phillips from Spokane, Washington—was Butch Cassidy because information contained therein must have come from someone who had been on the scene. Jameson makes a thorough analysis of the Phillips/Cassidy comparison, but cannot really tie down a conclusion. He calls it “Occam’s razor,” essentially saying he needs more evidence. Unfortunately, while Jameson was finalizing his book, an expanded manuscript of “The Bandit Invisible” surfaced and was acquired by a Utah rare document collector. This enlarged manuscript was turned over to the Montana author Larry Pointer for analysis. In this process, Pointer concluded that William T. Phillips was really William T. Wilcox, a fellow inmate with Butch Cassidy in Wyoming’s territorial prison. W. C. Jameson’s book is a nice addition to the expanding library about Utah’s most famous outlaw. It of course leaves the legend alive for someone else to prove whether the mystery of Butch’s life “beyond the grave” can be solved. JOEL FRANDSEN Elsinore, Utah

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BOOK NOTICES Later Patriarchal Blessings of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. By H. Michael Marquardt. (Salt Lake City: Smith-Pettit Foundation, 2012. liv + 591 pp. Cloth, $90.00.)

This book contains the text of eight hundred patriarchal blessings given to members of the LDS church between the 1830s and 1980s. These blessings, unique to Mormonism, are important rituals meant to bolster faith and give prophetic guidance; scribes write them down and the church keeps copies. The volume includes blessings given to well-known and lesser-known people in Utah history. The introduction discusses the office of the patriarch and gives a detailed account of the controversial appointment and term of the last church-wide patriarch, Eldred Smith. The Avenues. Images of America Series. By Cevan LeSieur. (Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing, 2012. 127 pp. Paper, $21.99.)

Historic photographs of the buildings and people of Salt Lake City’s Avenues fill the pages of this book. Along with a chapter on the architecturally eclectic houses of the neighborhood, there are chapters about construction projects, places of worship and learning, apartment buildings, and public buildings. The Color of Christ:The Son of God and the Saga of Race in America. By Edward J. Blum and Paul Harvey. (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2012. 340 pp. Cloth, $32.50.)

This groundbreaking book argues that the color of Christ in American art has had—and does have—significant political and social implications: Jesus’s race has been involved in slavery, struggles for emancipation, Native peoples’ struggles with whites, KKK activities, civil rights, immigration issues, warfare, and more. The authors state that the “color of Christ” provides a compelling way to grasp the meaning of religion and race in American history. They discuss the Mormon views of Christ vis-àvis Mormons’ attitudes toward race. They also suggest that Mormon view of Christ might also have been influenced by the fact that Mormon whiteness was at times under attack. (One person described the children of polygamists as members of a degraded new race.) Perhaps because of such persecution, early Mormons became committed to the “whiteness” of Jesus, and hence their own.

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UTAH STATE HISTORICAL SOCIETY FELLOWS THOMAS G. ALEXANDER JAMES B. ALLEN LEONARD J. ARRINGTON (1917–1999) MAUREEN URSENBACH BEECHER DAVID L. BIGLER FAWN M. BRODIE (1915–1981) JUANITA BROOKS (1898–1989) OLIVE W. BURT (1894–1981) EUGENE E. CAMPBELL (1915–1986) EVERETT L. COOLEY (1917–2006) C. GREGORY CRAMPTON (1911–1995) S. GEORGE ELLSWORTH (1916–1997) MAX J. EVANS AUSTIN E. FIFE (1909–1986) PETER L. GOSS LEROY R. HAFEN (1893–1985) B. CARMON HARDY JOEL JANETSKI A. KARL LARSON (1899–1983) GUSTIVE O. LARSON (1897–1983) WILLIAM P. MACKINNON BRIGHAM D. MADSEN (1914–2010) CAROL CORNWALL MADSEN DEAN L. MAY (1938–2003) DAVID E. MILLER (1909–1978) DALE L. MORGAN (1914–1971) WILLIAM MULDER (1915–2008) PHILIP F. NOTARIANNI FLOYD A. O’NEIL HELEN Z. PAPANIKOLAS (1917–2004) CHARLES S. PETERSON RICHARD W. SADLER GARY L. SHUMWAY MELVIN T. SMITH WALLACE E. STEGNER (1909–1993) WILLIAM A. WILSON

HONORARY LIFE MEMBERS DAVID BIGLER CRAIG FULLER FLORENCE S. JACOBSEN MARLIN K. JENSEN STANFORD J. LAYTON WILLIAM P. MACKINNON JOHN S. MCCORMICK F. ROSS PETERSON RICHARD C. ROBERTS WILLIAM B. SMART MELVIN T. SMITH LINDA THATCHER GARY TOPPING

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UTAH H I S T O R I C A L Q U A RT E R LY SPRING 2014

VOLUME 82

NUMBER 2


UTAH HISTORICAL QUARTERLY

(ISSN 0 042-143X) EDITORIAL STAFF BRAD WESTWOOD, Editor HOLLY GEORGE,

Managing Editor

ADVISORY BOARD OF EDITORS BRIAN Q. CANNON, Provo, 2016 CRAIG FULLER, Salt

Lake City, 2015 Lake City, 2015 KATHRYN L. MACKAY, Ogden, 2017 ROBERT E. PARSON, Benson, 2017 W. PAUL REEVE, Salt Lake City, 2014 SUSAN SESSIONS RUGH, Provo, 2016 JOHN SILLITO, Ogden, 2017 GARY TOPPING, Salt Lake City, 2014 RONALD G. WATT, West Valley City, 2017 COLLEEN WHITLEY, Salt Lake City, 2015

LEE ANN KREUTZER, Salt

Utah Historical Quarterly was established in 1928 to publish articles, documents, and reviews contributing to knowledge of Utah history. The Quarterly is published four times a year by the Division of State History/Utah State Historical Society, 300 S. Rio Grande, Salt Lake City, Utah 84101. Phone (801) 245-7231 for membership and publication information. Members of the Society receive the Quarterly upon payment of the annual dues: individual, $30; institution, $40; student and senior citizen (age sixty-five or older), $25; business, $40; sustaining, $40; patron, $60; sponsor, $100. Manuscripts submitted for publication should be double-spaced with endnotes. We encourage authors to submit both a paper and an electronic version of the manuscript. For additional information, contact the managing editor or visit our website. Articles and book reviews represent the views of the authors and are not necessarily those of the Utah State Historical Society.

Find Utah Historical Quarterly online at history.utah.gov. Periodicals postage is paid at Salt Lake City, Utah. POSTMASTER: Send address change to Utah Historical Quarterly, 300 S. Rio Grande,

Salt Lake City, Utah 84101.


UTAH DIVISION OF STATE HISTORY UTAH STATE HISTORICAL SOCIETY

Department of Heritage and Arts BOARD OF STATE HISTORY MICHAEL W. HOMER, Salt

Lake City, 2014, Chair DINA WILLIAMS BLAES, Salt Lake City, 2017 SCOTT R. CHRISTENSEN, Salt Lake City, 2014 YVETTE DONOSSO, Sandy, 2015 MARIA GARCIAZ, Salt Lake City, 2015 DEANNE G. MATHENY, Lindon, 2017 ROBERT S. MCPHERSON, Blanding, 2015 STEVEN LLOYD OLSEN, Heber City, 2017 GREGORY C. THOMPSON, Salt Lake City, 2015 PATTY TIMBIMBOO-MADSEN, Plymouth, 2015 WESLEY ROBERT WHITE, Salt Lake City, 2017 ADMINISTRATION

BRAD WESTWOOD, Director

and State Historic Preservation Officer

In 1897, public-spirited Utahns organized the Utah State Historical Society in order to expand public understanding of Utah’s past. Today, the Utah Division of State History administers the Society and, as part of its statutory obligations, publishes the Utah Historical Quarterly, which has collected and preserved Utah’s unique history since 1928. The Division also collects materials related to the history of Utah; assists communities, agencies, building owners, and consultants with state and federal processes regarding archaeological and historical resources; administers the ancient human remains program; makes historical resources available in a specialized research library; offers extensive online resources and grants; and assists in public policy and the promotion of Utah’s rich history. Please visit history.utah.gov for more information. The activity that is the subject of this journal has been financed in part with Federal funds from the National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior, and administered by the State Historic Preservation Office of Utah. The contents and opinions do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Department of the Interior or the Utah State Historic Preservation Office, nor does the mention of trade names or commercial products constitute endorsement or recommendation by the Department of the Interior or the Utah State Historic Preservation Office. This program receives Federal financial assistance for identification and protection of historic properties. Under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, as amended, the U.S. Department of the Interior prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, disability, or age 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 to: Office for Equal Opportunity, National Park Service, 849 C Street NW, Washington, D.C. 20240.


U TA H H I S T O R I C A L Q U A R T E R LY SPRING 2014

• VOLUME 82

• NUMBER 2

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IN THIS ISSUE

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Segregating Sanitation in Salt Lake City, 1870-1915 By Ben Cater

114

Grasshoppers, Thanksgiving Dinner, and Utah Turkeys By Dale W Adams

133

Alma Richards’s Olympic Leap of Faith Revisited By Larry R. Gerlach

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Male and Female Teachers in Early Utah and the West By Val D. Rust

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BOOK REVIEWS Michael J. Pfeifer, ed. Lynching Beyond Dixie: American Mob Violence Outside the South Reviewed by Patrick Q. Mason

Mark DeVoto, ed. The Selected Letters of Bernard DeVoto and Katharine Sterne Reviewed by Val Holley

Jeffrey Marcos Garcilazo. Traqueros: Mexican Railroad Workers in the United States 1870-1930 Reviewed by Allan Kent Powell

Robin L. Murray and Joseph K. Heumann. Gunfight at the Eco-Corral: Western Cinema and the Environment Reviewed by Christopher Herbert

C. Joseph Genetin-Pilawa. Crooked Paths to Allotment: The Fight over Federal Indian Policy after the Civil War Reviewed by Timothy M. Wright

Michon Mackedon. Bombast: Spinning Atoms in the Desert Reviewed by Katherine Good

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BOOK NOTICES

© COPYRIGHT 2014 UTAH STATE HISTORICAL SOCIETY


IN THIS ISSUE

O

n September 1, 1911, a photographer captured an image of several boys playing in the water at Pioneer Park in Salt Lake City. Behind the apparent simplicity of this photograph, our spring 2014 cover, are many complexities. Who were these children? What urban systems and social movements gave them access to a clean public park? These questions are answered somewhat by the knowledge that during the early 1900s, reformers in Utah were engaged in the City Beautiful movement—a major part of which was the creation of playgrounds—and in 1912, the children’s area at Pioneer Park underwent great improvements.1 Just so, it is worth asking about the context surrounding even the most seemingly mundane things and events. The anchor article in this issue examines the socioeconomic, religious, and ethnic struggles behind the development of Salt Lake City’s sanitation infrastructure. As Utah’s capital city moved into the industrial era, its citizens suffered because of inadequate water, sewer, and garbage services. Civic officials answered such problems in the late 1800s and early 1900s by building waterCOVER: Pioneer Park, Salt Lake City, September 1911. UTAH STATE HISTORICAL SOCIETY

IN THIS ISSUE (ABOVE): A crowd of people gathered at a Salt Lake City produce market near the Growers’ Exchange, August 1913. UTAH STATE HISTORICAL SOCIETY

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works and a sewer system, among other things; however, those improvements disproportionately favored certain neighborhoods. Salt Lake’s public health reforms took on an ethnic dimension because the portion of the city that was most neglected, its Westside, was increasingly inhabited during these years by immigrants from Asia, Latin America, and southern Europe. Many affluent Salt Lakers reacted to Westside conditions by judging the people of that area to be “unclean, unhealthy, and un-American.” Our second article asks about the “ingredients” that compose the centerpiece of a traditional holiday meal—the turkey—and how turkey-raising in Utah went from a small-scale activity focused on pest control and holiday markets to a thriving industry. Improvements in technology, transportation, and business practices (the establishment of modern processing plants or the invention of bulk feeders, for instance) had a significant part in the growth of turkey farming in the state. The support and direction provided by growers’ organizations, county extension programs, and the Utah State Agricultural College likewise aided the industry. But this story also had a very human element: several key individuals influenced Utah turkey farming, and as the twentieth century progressed, those growers who stayed in the poultry business learned to adapt to change and difficulty. At this printing, the world has just celebrated the conclusion of the Sochi 2014 Olympics. Just over a century ago, a young man from Utah enjoyed a fantastic victory at the Stockholm 1912 Olympics. Alma Richards was still a relative newcomer to the sport of high jump in 1912, and he was a dark horse at the games. Yet he won. A bit of reportage about Richards’s accomplishment led to a story of how this Mormon boy called for divine help as he made his Olympic leap—and that story took on a life of its own, especially as Salt Lake City prepared to host its own Olympics. Our third article unravels the complicated story of Alma Richards’s Olympic prayer and asks us to consider the uses of history. The final article in this issue also tackles something of a historical myth: the notion that women formed the majority of school teachers in the Old West. Besides delicate eastern girls who came west to be schoolmarms, this article argues, plenty of men led classrooms in the nineteenth-century West. Utah had a particularly interesting mix of male and female teachers, one complicated by religion and changed by the passage of time. All told, this issue of Utah Historical Quarterly prompts us to look carefully at familiar stories and ordinary things.

1 Thomas G. Alexander, “Cooperation, Conflict, and Compromise: Women, Men, and the Environment in Salt Lake City, 1890–1930,” BYU Studies 35, no. 1 (1995): 19–23.

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Segregating Sanitation in Salt Lake City, 1870-1915 BY BEN CATER

L

ike many American cities in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, Salt Lake City experienced rising morbidity rates from filth-related diseases. Urban and industrial growth, increased pollution, and the lack of effective therapeutics contributed to human suffering, sickness, and death. Sanitation laws existed, including those for disposing of waste and barring animals from grazing in public watersheds, but enforcing them remained difficult, particularly in a farming community rapidly entering the urban-industrial age. Since curbside ditches supplied water for cooking and bathing, residents were appalled at the sight of garbage “choking and obstructing the ditches and defiling the water.” Ditches produced noxious gasses, or “miasmas” thought to cause disease, and they harbored deadly microbes that contributed to diarrhea, cholera, typhoid A Salt Lake City home at the fever, and diphtheria. As water-borne illness historic address of 130 North and “dominated the health picture,” recalled the 200 West. As this 1915 image physician Ralph T. Richards, citizens demonstrates, many residents of the Westside faced difficult demanded sanitary improvements.1 This article argues that public health sanitary conditions. Ben Cater, PhD, earned his doctorate in history at the University of Utah in 2012. Currently he serves as an assistant professor of history at Eastern Nazarene College in Quincy, Massachusetts. He wishes to thank his colleagues, students, and family for their encouragement and support.

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reforms helped to create a health-based hierarchy that informed the city’s shifting cultural geography. Class and race played disproportionate roles in mapping medical improvements, as did religion, which historians have traditionally ignored. As city officials responded to citizen petitions for pure water and, later, sewer and garbage services, they did so mainly to benefit affluent white Mormons and non-Mormon “gentiles,” most of whom lived and worked downtown and in suburban neighborhoods.2 Religion initially pitted Mormons against people outside their faith and sometimes against each other; over time, such contention diminished, which permitted affluent whites of all religious backgrounds to support both sanitary progress and their claims to superior health and American identity. Conversely, impoverished Chinese, Greek, Italian, and Mexican immigrants who lived in dilapidated Westside enclaves remained segregated from these improvements, causing them to be cast as unclean, unhealthy, and un-American. Since Salt Lake City’s incorporation in 1847, bishops of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS or Mormon) were responsible for ensuring water supply, purity, and distribution. They fulfilled this charge reasonably well and then, in the 1870s, stepped aside for city councilors and engineers professionally trained in urban planning and design. The central public health problem that these civil servants encountered was growth. Although rainfall remained normal during the late nineteenth century, population growth did not, averaging over ninety percent annually until 1890. Natural increase and the fruits of LDS missionary efforts combined to create a stress on water resources and increase their relative pollution. Municipal authorities addressed this dilemma by enforcing sanitation laws more diligently and committing themselves to increasing water volume. One plan, proposed by councilman Elijah Sheets in 1864, entailed devoting ditch water to domestic and manufacturing needs exclusively, while building a forty-mile canal to ferry Utah Lake water to city agricultural fields.3 Mayor Daniel H. Wells and water superintendent Theodore McKean proposed building a waterworks system in City Creek Canyon— the source of ditch water—and the central business district (CBD), only, to save money.4 The least costly plan called for either boring artesian wells in Salt Lake City’s twenty-plus municipal wards or hiring private contractors to furnish bottled water to paying customers. 1 Ralph T. Richards, Of Medicine, Hospitals, and Doctors (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 1953), 20. Complete footnotes for this article can be found in Ben Cater, “Health, Medicine, and Power in the Salt Lake Valley, Utah, 1869–1945” (PhD diss., University of Utah, 2012), chapter 1. 2 “Gentile” is a historical category used by and against non-Mormons in the nineteenth century, although it is no longer an acceptable term to delineate religious identity. 3 City Council Minutes, August 9, 1864, Salt Lake County Recorder’s Office, Salt Lake City, Utah (hereafter SLCRO). 4 “Theodore McKean,” MS 2050, box 20, fd. 2, no. 1, p. 8, Church History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah (hereafter CHL); City Council Minutes, October 25, 1870, February 23, March 15, 1872, April 1, 1873.

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While politicians and civil servants debated these plans, water scarcity and contamination continued to undermine community health. Although outbreaks of water-borne disease had occurred before the 1870s, their rate and severity rose to rival that of the nation’s most squalid municipalities, including Philadelphia and Chicago.5 According to popular lore, Salt Lake City possessed the dirtiest streets in the West after Kansas City. Religious rivalries only complicated the situation, as sanitary services became a bone of contention between city councilors, most of whom were Mormon, and the anti-Mormon Salt Lake Tribune. In April 1871, the Tribune—sensing an opportunity to ridicule city officials—snorted: “Salt Lake City seems like an overgrown and dull country village. There seems to be no public spirit exhibited by the City Authorities, unless it be in hunting down liquor dealers who refuse to pay extortionate licenses.” In May the Tribune continued, “We need first-class waterworks which should place an ample supply of the bright sparkling water of city creek in the house of every resident in the city, to promote health and comfort.”6 It is conceivable that city officials interpreted these editorials as a grumpy, though welcome, endorsement of the plan proposed by Wells and McKean, both Mormons. In December 1870, they had proposed an $180,000 waterworks system that would be funded by the subscriptions of downtown property owners. However, although residents in the central business district frequently requested permission to lay private water pipes in City Creek, during the spring of 1871 they rejected the mayor’s plan on the grounds that they already paid the majority of municipal taxes. Caving in to this pressure, as well as to that coming from the probusiness Liberal Party, Mayor Wells and the city council agreed to fund waterworks in the district through general revenue and license fees.7 On September 3, 1872, policemen oversaw prison inmates as they dug three-foot trenches for water mains in City Creek Canyon. Engineer Thomas Ellerbeck planned for the laminated wood and cast iron mains to run south through the canyon before turning west on North Temple and then through and around the central business district until terminating at the Jordan River. Ellerbeck’s plan seemed rational enough—prior to diesel engine technology, gravity, rather than mechanical force, transferred water—and the placement of the mains accommodated the land’s southwestern slope.8 In October 1876, four years after breaking ground, city 5 Ralph Richards calculated more than 14,000 cases of typhoid fever in Salt Lake City before 1904, with a mortality rate of about 6.5 percent. From 1911 to 1915, that rate increased to 13.2 percent against the national average of 16.38 percent among cities with populations of 100,000 to 125,000, and then to 18.1 percent versus 10.9 percent among the same segment in 1917. Richards, Of Medicine, 167; JAMA: The Journal of the American Medical Association 70 (March 16, 1918): Table V, 778; D. C. Houston and Rey M. Hill, Health Conditions and Facilities in Utah (Salt Lake City: Utah State Planning Board, 1936), 15. 6 Salt Lake Tribune, April 27 (first quotation), May 19, 1871 (second quotation). 7 City Council Minutes, February 13, 1871, SLCRO. 8 Message of the Mayor with the Annual Reports of the Officers of Salt Lake City, Utah, for the Year 1907 (Salt Lake City: Century Printing, n.d.), 206–207.

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fathers opened the City Creek reservoir to allow “good, clean water” to flow to businesses, churches, and homes fourteen miles below.9 The Deseret News, the official newspaper of the Mormon church, hailed the water mains as an “inestimable boon.” The newspaper touted the system’s benefits to the “Merchants, Bankers, Hotel, and Livery Stable Keepers” who had petitioned city councilors to lower water rates to “10 cents per thousand gallons” (although churches received water free of charge).10 Clean piped water also served affluent homeowners who, like Victorians nationally, saw indoor plumbing as a way to promote progress and to improve their homes and health. Although Mormons and nonMormons remained segregated from each other in downtown’s northern and southern ends, sanitary water transcended this religious divide by flowing in and around their stores and homes, delivering “liquid health and comfort.”11 While waterworks existed downtown, public health remained a concern throughout the community. Polluted water still ran in city ditches, and municipal officials estimated that only “thirty per cent of the citizens have been directly benefitted by waterworks,” even though all of the city’s taxpayers had shared the $283,000 price tag for its construction.12 During the construction, several dozen residents rose up to protest this partiality and to support a more “just and equitable plan” of taxing property “where the mains are laid” and extending improvements to less affluent areas.13 Echoing these sentiments, other citizens emerged in the 1880s to lament the fact that public improvements were built for the “wealthy portion of the community” at the expense of the “poor portion of the community.”14 Accused of class bias, Salt Lake City leaders responded by endorsing a plan that would potentially benefit the entire community. Constructed between 1879 and 1882, the Jordan Canal traveled from Utah Lake north along the Wasatch Range to an open conduit at North Temple and Main Street, from whence it flowed to the Jordan River. Residents in the southern, eastern, and northern parts of the city tapped into the canal to irrigate their gardens and to power their businesses, particularly grist mills, paper, sugar, and woolen factories. However, while the canal initially seemed to heal social divisions, it exacerbated them when religious and class contention reemerged during construction. In April 1880, the Salt Lake Tribune accused the Mormon-dominated city council of approving a $250,000 bond to enrich the Mormon church and specifically its president, John Taylor. Taylor allegedly had lobbied the councilors to back the bond, since the Jordan Canal required the 9

Deseret News, October 6, 1876. Ibid.; City Council Minutes, October 12, 1875, August 1, 1876, May 18, 1880, SLCRO. 11 City Council Minutes, April 24, 1877, SLCRO. 12 Ibid., April 15, 1884. 13 Ibid., June, 15, 1878. 14 Ibid., October 3, 1888; Deseret News, September 12, 1888. 10

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Cottonwood ditch—which Taylor claimed The reservoir at the mouth of ownership of—to function properly. The Parley’s Canyon. council paid Taylor $40,000 for the ditch, and the LDS city surveyor Jesse Fox hired exclusively “Mormon pilgrims arriving from the old country” to construct the canal. In addition, the canal was poorly built, leaking and fouling ditch water in the lower-income Westside. Tribune editor Charles C. Goodwin reprimanded the “jobbers who carried through the corrupt canal scheme” and mixed undrinkable Utah Lake water with City Creek water downtown before carrying it to Westside ditches. He asked, “And of the inhabitants of that whole portion . . . who receive water below the point where the canal discharges? They all have equitable claims for relief in this matter, for a very positive and comprehensive damage has been done there. Even a little foul water will taint a large stream, and the abuse is flagrant.” Yet rather than addressing these critiques, according to the Tribune, the Deseret News brushed them aside to highlight the canal’s success in providing “a steady supply of voluminous water” to the city.15 Because growth continued to diminish water resources, in 1888 the city council brokered a trade agreement with Parley’s Canyon farmers whereby they agreed to exchange Jordan Canal water for high quality drinking water flowing in and around the canyon. Laborers built a reservoir at the 15 Salt Lake Tribune, April 4, 1880, July 27, July 30, 1882, July 1, 1899. The Deseret News quotation comes from the Salt Lake Tribune, July 30, 1882.

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mouth of Parley’s Canyon where a conduit shuttled 8.5 million gallons daily along the city’s eastern bench to a reservoir at 100 South and 1300 East, at which point gravity then carried the water to suburban neighborhoods east of downtown. This “first exchange” was a farsighted improvement in accommodation of growth. It preceded a “second exchange,” wherein the Salt Lake City Chamber of Commerce worked with city officials to purchase eight to ten million gallons of Big Cottonwood Canyon water in exchange for a similar amount of canal water for farmers.16 With an abundant supply of pure water, affluent residents in the suburbs requested home service. Suburbs emerged during the nineteenth century as peaceful retreats from the noise and squalor of inner cities. In Salt Lake City, argues Cecilia Parera, suburbs revealed class-oriented spatial growth, in that their occupants belonged to the richest twenty percent who owned nearly ninety-two percent of city property.17 The Eastern Slope, the city’s first suburb, consisted of non-Mormon businessmen, doctors, and attorneys and to a lesser extent, wealthy Mormons. The slope extended from Main Street to 600 East and from South Temple to 900 South, with its terrain rising steadily toward the Wasatch bench. Electric streetcars provided service to its spacious Queen Anne,Victorian, and Greek Revival homes, as well as to the city’s two major hospitals. Farther south was Sugar House, a professional and business-class Mormon neighborhood and the site of a speculative real estate boom, which was bounded by 500 East and 2100 East and 1300 South and 2700 South. Salt Lake City annexed Sugar House after the LDS church suspended sugar beet operations there. Fertile land and good air complemented the area’s opportunities for physical recreation such as golfing and tennis at the country club and hunting, fishing, swimming, and hiking in Parley’s Hollow. The Chamber of Commerce emphasized the suburb’s potential for development.18 Shortly after the first exchange, city officials ordered waterworks construction in the Eastern Slope and soon thereafter in Sugar House, with mains going to homes first and then to vacant lots. Mayor George Scott, a non-Mormon and a member of the Liberal Party, heartily endorsed these plans, stating “nothing more strongly invites improvements than a good water supply.”19 Not everyone endorsed water service, however. Poor residents, several of whom were African Americans who inhabited the eastern and western edges of the Eastern Slope (commonly called 16 Map #8491, “Sketch Showing Principal Sources of Water Supply to Salt Lake City,” June 28, 1932, LeRoy W. Hooton Jr. Public Utilities Building, Salt Lake City, Utah; LeRoy W. Hooton Jr., “The Jordan and Salt Lake City Canal,” typescript, MSS A 3229, Utah State Historical Society, Salt Lake City, Utah (hereafter USHS); Salt Lake Tribune, February 3, 1891, March 18, 1892, February 2, 1894. 17 Cecilia Parera, “Mormon Town Planning: Physical and Social Relevance,” Journal of Planning History 4 (2005): 170. 18 Salt Lake Chamber of Commerce, “Salt Lake City and Surroundings” (Salt Lake City: Tribune Printing and Publishing Company, 1889), 35. 19 Annual Message of the Mayor with the Annual Reports of the Officers of Salt Lake City, Utah, for the Year 1891 (Salt Lake City, 1892), 12, Series 4882, USHS.

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“nigger town”), argued that construction imposed too high a financial burden on them.20 Per capita costs could equal $275 and $600 for neighborhood mains, the latter of which averaged eighty percent of an annual working-class salary.21 In 1888, city councilors amended municipal water ordinances to require all beneficiaries to pay three-quarters of home construction costs, plus fifty cents per front foot of home lateral connections. The city also asserted its right to seize property from owners who failed to pay, although in extreme cases permitted payments in two or three installments. Less than two decades after the emergence of waterworks in Salt Lake City, therefore, public health improvements seemed to privilege specific racial, class, and geographic interests, trumping religious differences. In addition to financial and political support, gravity also influenced the construction of water mains in the Eastern Slope and Sugar House neighborhoods. Salt Lake City occupied the former lakebed of prehistoric Lake Bonneville, which formed a natural amphitheater with land rising north and east toward downtown, the Avenues, and the Wasatch bench. Water thus traveled south and west from the northern and eastern benches toward the Jordan River. This fact helps explain why, until the settlement of well-heeled Salt Lakers in the 1880s, the Avenues retained the unflattering sobriquet of the “dry bench.” Platted in the 1850s, the Avenues neighborhood covered a high sloping bench northeast of downtown, most of it too high for municipal water service. Its earliest settlers included artisans and farmers who gravitated toward the area’s cheap land but chafed against its lack of water; to the extreme southwest lived a few wealthy LDS officials who worked at the Temple Block. To increase their comfort, a few residents dug shallow wells or laid private pipes in City Creek Canyon, while others hired home water delivery via wooden barrels. The majority, however, carried buckets from springs and ditches lower in the city. By the 1870s, this hardship motivated residents of the area to establish the Dry Bench Committee and lobby city officials to address their problem. In August 1874, Septimus Sears appeared on behalf of eleven hundred people to request public aid. The city council rejected his appeal 20 City Council Minutes, November 29, 1881, SLCRO; Margaret May, Charles Redd Center for Western Studies Nurses Oral History Project, MS OH 02228, p. 4, L. Tom Perry Special Collections, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah. In circa 1890, about 220 African Americans lived in Salt Lake City, mostly on Franklin Avenue on the western edge of the Eastern Slope. Thirteenth Census of the United States, 1910, vol. III, Population, Table IV, “Composition and Characteristics of the Population for Wards of Salt Lake City” (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1913), 890; George Ramjoue, “The Negro in Utah: A Geographical Study in Population” (master’s thesis, University of Utah, 1968), 10; James Boyd Christensen, “A Social Survey of the Negro Population of Salt Lake City, Utah” (master’s thesis, University of Utah, 1948). For a white perspective on racial segregation in Salt Lake City, see “Interviews with Caucasians in Utah,” box 1, fd. 14, p. 13, MS 483, Special Collections, J. Willard Marriott Library, University of Utah (hereafter JWML). 21 City Council Minutes, September 27, 1887, August 1888, SLCRO. On construction costs, see April 15, May 24, 1884. I based the average annual working-class salary on three dollars per day, at five days a week, totaling $720 per year.

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and redirected him to the county court, which allegedly possessed the sole r ight to grant legal title to the sur plus of Big Cottonwood water. This response did not appease Sears, however, who insisted on equity: just as city residents outside of downtown financed waterworks in the central business district, so should the central business district finance waterworks outside of downtown. Yet the following year, city officials reiterated their historic war ning against settling above the waterline, while the county court explained that no means yet existed to transport Big Cottonwood water to the Avenues.22 The Dr y Bench Committee continued to claim that its constituents “suffered in health, comfort, and This image of the Thomas Kearns convenience” and could not fund waterworks family depicts the opulence that themselves. Fortunately, the committee some Salt Lakers enjoyed. demanded and received a tax refund for previous years. Unfortunately, these refunds were a zero-sum, as the city later imposed taxes for building the Jordan Canal, which Avenues residents were “led to [falsely] believe . . . would bring them relief.”23 With mayoral support, in 1884 the city council approved building a water main from City Creek Canyon through Sixth Avenue to the city cemetery. Six years later, another main had increased the water volume by more than half. These mains provided water to the neighborhoods below them, down to South Temple; the residents of this area included mine owners, bankers, attorneys, doctors, and real estate developers, such as Thomas Kearns, Joseph Walker, and George Downey. These people built spacious homes on lands purchased from early Mormon pioneers and normally traveled by streetcar to work, shop, and worship in downtown. As part of Salt Lake City’s nouveaux riches, they remained categorically different 22 23

City Council Minutes, March 30, 1875, SLCRO. Ibid., January 16, February 6, December 11, 1877, January 29, 1878, February 20, 1883, SLCRO.

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from the city’s poorer and less influential residents, some of whom lived above the Sixth Avenue main. Lacking political clout, these persons formed the North Bench Committee in the 1880s to reassert their “unjust discrimination,” which threatened their health and land values.24 In 1888, relief finally came when city laborers laid a main on G Street that supplied water to North Bench homes and undeveloped lots. Public health conditions in one area of Salt Lake City—Chinatown— revealed both the power of sanitary inequity and how white biases against non-white people could become caught up in the politics of sanitation. In the 1870s, after having labored on the transcontinental railroad, many Chinese immigrants settled in urban ethnic enclaves. Chinese men in these enclaves performed jobs that were culturally and legally open to them, especially laundering, which white men typically viewed as “woman’s work” and appropriate for supposedly less masculine men. Besides its association with femininity, washing also seemed to be unsanitary and unsafe because it brought launderers into contact with dirty clothing. In Salt Lake City’s CBD, Chinese men opened laundries in the “miserable shanties” of Plum Alley and Commercial Street, the location of the city’s Chinatown and its red light, gambling, and drug-trafficking district. This area reeked of filth and opium smoke, while its dark alleys and prostitutes seemed to confirm its inhabitants’ proclivity for dirt and despair.25 Despite some attempts by evangelical Christian missionaries to convert and purify the “heathens,” some of whom appeared to be “clean,” the Chinese normally rejected their efforts. 26 Rather, many continued to embrace Buddhism, ancestral worship, and cultural pastimes such as smoking and selling non-medicinal opium, which was illicit in Salt Lake City. They also still lived with other men, prostitutes, and pimps in cramped stuffy quarters, domestic arrangements that seemed to portend violence, sex, and drug-related disease. Some whites believed that Chinese laundrymen, who relied on traditional mouth sprayers instead of new steam technology, passed disease to customers. While the Chinese enjoyed access to sanitary water mains by virtue of inhabiting the CBD, that access ultimately could not wash away white biases against them.27 24 Salt Lake Tribune, March 22, May 22, 1885; City Council Minutes, March 21, 1876, April 9, 1878, SLCRO. 25 Richard T. Page and J. J. Bloomfield, Evaluation of the Industrial Hygiene Problem of the State of Utah, 1938 (Washington, D.C.: Division of Industrial Health, National Institutes of Health, United States Public Health Service, 1938), 27; Salt Lake Tribune, November 15, 1879, October 2, 1899, October 15, 1900. 26 Salt Lake Tribune, May 25, 1884, January 4, 1885; “Reports, 1932–1933,” box 49, fd. 1, MS 558, Utah Federation of Women’s Clubs Records, JWML; Laurie Maffly-Kipp and Reid Neilson, eds., Proclamation to the People: Nineteenth-Century Mormonism and the Pacific Basin Frontier (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 2008), 272. 27 Salt Lake Tribune, November 15, 1879, August 10, September 19, October 11, 14, 1883, May 25, 1884, September 11, 1885, January 20, 1886, September 10, 1892; City Council Minutes, August 18, 1874, October 23, 1883, October 30, 1883, SLCRO; Salt Lake Herald, November 11, 1883; Daniel Liestman, “Utah’s Chinatowns: The Development and Decline of Extinct Ethnic Enclaves,” Utah Historical Quarterly 64 (Winter 1996): 80–83; Michael Lansing, “Race, Space, and Chinese Life in Late-Nineteenth Century

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In 1883, white residents pressured city councilors to write new laws prohibiting Chinese laundries downtown. City attorney Aurelius Miner suggested that the city purchase land “away from the thickly settled portion” of downtown near the Jordan River for “Chinese Wash Houses.” Miner also suggested crafting a “special ordinance” to prohibit Chinese launderers from working outside this space.28 Miner’s efforts to remove these immigrants from the CBD occurred within the context of the national anti-Chinese movement, which sought to diminish the economic and cultural competition posed by the “yellow peril” and had recently gained federal backing. The Salt Lake Tribune editorialized that Miner’s proposal seemed like a “good suggestion,” which if carried out would keep “poisonous vapors” from harming the “health of the public.” The Tribune also worked to tie physical health to moral health by asserting that the removal of Chinatown’s dope fiends and “houses of ill repute” would also purge the CBD of Chinese prostitutes—“‘the meanest of moral ulcers.’”29 On September 18, 1883, Jim Lung appeared before the city council to speak on behalf “of the Chinese residents of the city.” Despite his stated mission, Lung asserted that Chinese laundries posed a risk to public health because they used a large amount of common soap, the ingredients of which, when exposed to the sun, and through being allowed to remain in stagnant places, from the lack of sewerage, readily decomposed and induced malaria calculated to produce quick fevers, scarlatina [sic], and other malignant, if not fatal, diseases.30

The city council—likely surprised by Lung’s testimony, but grateful for it— approved his petition, which deepened cleavages in the Chinese community. The council also listened to the testimony of Henry A. Reed, who represented the white female launderers of the city. Reed cited “many” laundries in California and Nevada as examples and argued that Salt Lake City should also impose a high tax on Chinese laundries, but not on “whites laboring in the same business.” Though he was explicit about his desire to keep “Chinamen” out of downtown, Reed remained quiet about his alleged role in dividing the immigrants. Then on October 30, Jack Fong and eighteen other Chinese immigrants asserted that Lung did not in fact speak for the Chinese community, but rather was likely motivated by “inducements” given by Reed and other whites.31 Fong stated that Chinese launderers were “hard working men and poor” who leased washhouses, Salt Lake City,” Utah Historical Quarterly 72 (Summer 2004): 219–38; “Hiram Clawson Jr.,” MS D 1776, CHL; Paul Siu, “The Chinese Laundryman: A Study in Social Isolation” (PhD diss., University of Chicago, 1953), 80. 28 Salt Lake Tribune, August 10, 1883. The Deseret News, February 2, 1882, lists “A. Miner” as a city attorney. For a short biography of Miner, see History of the Bench and Bar of Utah (Salt Lake City: Interstate Press Association, 1913), 98. 29 City Council Minutes, August 7, 1883, SLCRO; Salt Lake Tribune, August 10, 1883; Liestman, “Utah’s Chinatowns,” 77 (final quotation). 30 City Council Minutes, September 18, 1883, SLCRO. 31 Salt Lake Tribune, October 11, 1883.

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which they kept “as cleanly as possible.” Rather than taking umbrage at health laws, they agreed to “whatever restrictions or regulations might be enacted for the disposition of soap suds or wash water used by them.”32 To the contrary, claimed the Salt Lake Tribune, some Chinese men installed “fake” sewer pipes to pass sanitary inspections.33 For reasons unknown, the city council allowed Chinese laundries to remain in the central business district. This decision differed from the actions of Park City, which outlawed Chinese laundries from Main Street and segregated them to “Poison” Creek, the city’s de facto sewer. Yet Salt Lake City’s decision created a situation similar to that of Park City. Although city attorneys were unwilling, or unable, to draft new laws against the Chinese, Chinese laundries gradually disappeared from downtown by the 1890s. Expired or nonrenewable leases, anti-Chinese sentiment, reduced Chinese immigration, and growing competition from white laundries pushed the immigrants out of washing clothes and into other pursuits, especially farming. Moreover, as their lots normally lacked connections to water and sewer mains but were within reach of the polluted Jordan River, they remained dirty and polluted and thus “fit” (in the language of the day) for a supposedly unclean and unhealthy people.34 Meanwhile, sanitary reforms in downtown and the suburbs made matters worse for Westside neighborhoods, populated mainly by working-class whites—some of them Mor mon—but increasingly non-Mor mon, non-white foreign immigrants. As the Salt Lake Tribune pointed out, the Jordan Canal fouled ditch water west of downtown, and according to Mimmie Howard, it habitually leaked to threaten lives and property. Her cellar, for example, filled “to the depth of ten inches, which was getting so offensive from remaining stagnant that there was imminent danger of sickness to her children.” Moreover, her tenants said that “they would be obliged to seek other and more healthful quarters unless the water was drained off.” The city council referred Howard’s petition to the Committee on the Jordan and Salt Lake City Canal and feared that the city “could no longer afford to pay legal judgments against it brought by citizens.”35 Water mains in the east and north also produced increased wastewater, which drained to the Jordan River or remained in vacant Westside lots to create toxic pools. Salt Lake City residents had long recognized the poor drainage of the city’s western portion, which resulted from its clay-based

32

City Council Minutes, September 18, October 9, 30, 1883, SLCRO. Salt Lake Tribune, July 24, 1890. 34 City Council Minutes, October 31, 1893, SLCRO. On this date, the city attorney reported the difficulty of drafting a law specifically against Chinese vegetable peddlers. On September 11, 1885, and January 20, 1886, the Salt Lake Tribune ran stories on boycotting Chinese laundries. Walter Jones, “Chinese Vegetable Gardeners in Salt Lake City: A Study in Ethnic Dispersion and Short-Term Residential and Economic Integration” (paper, American Historical Association Pacific Coast Branch, Tucson, AZ, August 3, 2002); “Sanborn Fire Insurance Map of Salt Lake City, 1898,” sheets 71–74, 78–79, JWML. 35 City Council Minutes, July 27, June 8, 1886, SLCRO. 33

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soil and low elevation. Beginning at Main Street—a “regular back-bone, the grades falling east, west, and south,” and the political boundary separating western and eastern wards—the city descended until reaching the Jordan River.36 The promise of sanitary water in the upper eastern and northern wards thus remained ominous to the Westside.37 On June 15, 1880, forty-six residents complained of a “stagnant pool of water . . . on South Temple between Seventh and Eighth West Streets,” yielding “effluvia arising from decayed and putrefying matter” that injured “their health and comfort.” In 1893, the city health director, Theodore Beatty, reported to the city council that numerous complaints cited “a large amount of stagnant water on Sixth West Street between South Temple and First South Street,” which created an “extremely offensive and a dangerous nuisance.” Several years later, William Showell, the city sanitary inspector, testified that “foul ditches” near Pioneer Square (300 West) yielded an odor that remained strong enough to “cause every person living on the block a fit subject for the hospital.” Meanwhile, Giovanno Cereghino, an Italian immigrant, requested that the city health department abate the “stagnant pools of water on Eighth South Street, between Third and Fourth West streets.”38 While Westside canals existed to channel runoff and debris to the Jordan River or north to the Hot Springs Lake, over time they evolved into “open sewer[s]” that became a “menace to public health.”39 Weeds, leaves, and excrement choked the canals, which also collected garbage because the city failed to provide garbage collection until 1895 and did so then primarily for the CBD. The city also required citizens to dispose of their garbage, but worked with representatives of the Salt Lake Real Estate Association to prohibit dumping on the Eastside.40 To comply with city regulations and to save money during the 1893 depression, residents of the eastern, northern, and southern suburbs commonly dumped their refuse in western canals. Although Beatty abated some of these “unsanitary” canals by filling them with malodorous but “harmless” horse manure, according to another city health commissioner, William Dalby, in 1895 some of them remained only partially filled, which caused “much sickness in this vicinity.” In response, members of the Utah Federation of Women’s Clubs proposed ending canal dumping and creating “more sanitary garbage disposal under supervision of town authorities.”41 36

Salt Lake Tribune, September 1, 1888. Historically residents identified the Westside as the land west of Main Street, an elevated north/south axis that ran along the east side of the Temple Block, the literal and spiritual center of Salt Lake City. Although some Westsiders settled north of the Temple Block, in the early twentieth century most of them built homes and businesses between it and 2100 South, the southernmost edge of the city. 38 City Council Minutes, June 15, 1880, March 28, 1893, October 20, 1896, March 16, 1897, SLCRO. 39 Ibid., November 18, 1889, March 18, 1884; Salt Lake Telegram, August 17, 1906. 40 City Council Minutes, February 19, March 12, 1906, SLCRO. 41 Ibid., September 26, December 12, 1893, January 30, February 13, April 27, September 11, 1894, August 27, 1895; “Three Decades of General Federation Work,” box 66, fd. 4, Women’s Clubs Records, JWML. 37

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As Westside residents witnessed their living conditions and property values fall during the turn-of-the-century, some, including many lowerincome Mormons, established neighborhood improvement leagues. The Westside Improvement League and the Eight West Improvement League, for instance, emerged to press for sanitary reforms. On June 3, 1907, “one of the sufferers” editorialized: We, on the west side, pay our taxes and we pay double the amount proportionately to the value of our property as the people do on the east side. We are poor people, of the working class, and the assessor knows what each individual owns and he is taxed to the full extent of its value. The money is taken to build boulevards, gardens and buy electric chandeliers to beautify the east side of the city. . . . Our ditches are not kept clean or open. Our canals are not filled up at the mouth because there is not sufficient money allowed for the west side. Jordan river at the mouth has to make a new channel every year. All the filth and debris which is washed into it comes down through the second and third precincts and no effort at dredging or making an opening at the mouth of it has ever been made. . . We are the tail end and cesspool of our city.42

By the early twentieth century, sanitary divides, as well as organizing for sanitary reform, were becoming increasingly complicated, based on a mysterious calculus of socioeconomics, geography, and race. Although these complaints resulted in an antidumping ordinance, it was loosely enforced and the city continued to dispose of garbage, filth, and swill in the Westside until 1916.43 In 1907, Salt Lake City leased a new public landfill that was supplied by a special garbage train, but the cost of transportation was high, ranging from $7.50 to $9.00 per load. Thus to save money, residents and officials alike regularly avoided the landfill and dumped their filth in the Westside, even if it was “not to the best interests of sanitation and health.”44 If disposing of refuse in the “least desirable neighborhoods” was a national trend, as the historian Martin Melosi has observed, so was showing preference to central business districts and suburbs in the implementation of sewer lines.45 During the late nineteenth century, Americans increasingly moved to the cities, using city waterworks and overflowing cesspools and privies. Officials worked to regulate waste repositories, but they believed that soil served as a natural filter for excreta whose liquid and solid components fertilized surrounding flora. This theory came under attack, however, as 42 Salt Lake Herald, June 3, 1907; see also, Salt Lake Herald, March 17, 1902, January 1, 1905, March 6, 1908, September 19, 1913. 43 In 1906, city health commissioner M. R. Stewart, city sanitary inspector W. H. Margetts, and four city garbage wagon drivers were arrested for “creating a nuisance” at the corner of 1000 West/300 South. Municipal Journal and Public Works 21, no. 8 (1906): 186. 44 Annual Reports of the Officers of Salt Lake City, Utah, for the Year 1915 (Salt Lake City: Western Printing, 1916), 543; City Council Minutes, April 1, 1907, SLCRO; Salt Lake Telegram, January 20, 1911; Message of the Mayor 1907,199; Annual Reports of the Officers of Salt Lake City, Utah, for the Year 1911 (Salt Lake City: Century Printing, n.d.), 354. 45 Martin Melosi, The Sanitary City: Environmental Services in Urban American from Colonial Times to the Present (Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press, 2008), 115–16.

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JOURNAL OF THE ASSOCIATION OF ENGINEERING SOCIETIES

population density and infections increased. A 1909 map of Salt Lake City’s In Salt Lake City, health officials under- sewer system. Westside residents stood that wastewater from upper wards eventually gained access to the drained west to contaminate lower ward intercepting sewer. wells. In the 1870s, downtown citizens informed municipal officials that water mains were vital because “their wells [were] tainted from the water oozing through the soil in a southwesterly direction.” In April 1880, two dozen residents of the western Eastern Slope testified that it remained “impossible to obtain pure water from their wells, owing to the want of proper sewage facilities.” 46 Their wells contained bacteria that spread typhoid fever, diphtheria, and cholera. Initially, and as with the delivery of water, the debates regarding sewage facilities fractured along religious lines. Throughout the 1880s, morbidity rates skyrocketed, prompting city chemist Herman Harms to conclude that, generally, surface drainage from the “higher portions of the city” infected wells in the lower wards. As he explained, water “filters through cesspools, dry closets, and other places of 46

City Council Minutes, April 29, 1879, June 22, 1880, SLCRO.

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filth . . . [to carry] germs and impurities directly into wells.”47 The Salt Lake Tribune agreed, arguing that downtown had become “a breeding place for disease” and that it needed a sewer. By contrast, the Deseret News asserted that health could be promoted and preserved by living in accordance with LDS values, which included maintaining a proper diet and personal cleanliness and receiving the blessings of elders. Moreover, one News reader decried such “nonsensical sanitary talk” and argued that in “no portion of this city [was] the soil unclean, or impregnated with unhealthful effluvia. . . . Such a condition is a scientific impossibility.”48 In 1883, the sentiment of the Deseret News changed. With backing from the Chamber of Commerce, Deseret News editor and LDS church official Charles Penrose affirmed that the central business district “is so situated that sewage could easily be collected” and that the best outlet for sewage disposal was the Jordan River, and ultimately, the Great Salt Lake. Understandably, this proposal incited Westside anger. Residents there invited “everybody who value[d] their health and homes” to meet and condemn Penrose’s plan as undemocratic and akin to the waterworks plan that benefitted “wealthy men” downtown, “non-tax paying tenants and [the] Chinese.” Residents also proposed alternative plans, including sewage farming, which entailed using liquid sewage to irrigate nutrient-poor lands west of the Jordan River. Though gladdened by the Deseret News’s change of heart, the Tribune still played religious politics by condemning the city councilors and church leaders—“the damned old elders of Israel”—who had initially resisted sewer construction and instead counseled Mormon religiosity. Rather than supporting modern reforms, they supported “a kind of Asiatic progress.” Rather than advancing a democratic plan, they now advocated one that favored the rich and hurt the poor. Moreover, after city officials approved sewer construction in 1888, the Mormon church allegedly imported converts from throughout the state to build the “Mormon sewer” and, importantly, cast votes for the Mormon People’s Party during the fall 1889 election.49 In 1890, the city collected over $70,000 in tax revenue to fund sewer construction in the CBD, with the first main being laid on Main Street. Working-class whites and non-whites, especially Greek immigrants, built the sewers, which continued out of the business district into the lower Avenues and Eastern Slope—an area collectively known as “sewer district one.”50 In 1892, sewer service became mandatory, and officials pressured 47 Salt Lake Herald, August 27, 1903, October 24, 1901, November 23, 1902, January 27, August 13, 29, September 6, 1903. 48 Salt Lake Tribune, May 23, 1888; Deseret News, September 10, 1881, November 14, 1888. 49 Deseret News, November 4, 1887, May 9, 11, 16, October 24, 1888; Salt Lake Tribune, May 8, 23, 1888, September 24, October 2, 1889, August 6, 14, 1890, November 5, 1893. 50 Historically, Americans contested what it meant to be “white,” particularly during the late nineteenth century. As the historian Matthew Frye Jacobson writes, “The ascendant view among native-born Americans in the 1890s” was that “Southern European, Semitic, and Slavic immigrants held as poor a claim

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residents outside of the district to file for Gravity outlet sewer, Salt Lake connections once residents had paid three- City. quarters of main construction costs, one dollar permits, and charges for residential hookups. The total cost for individual properties could range from one to several hundred dollars, with the bulk of it coming from main assessments that were calculated at several dollars per property foot.51 Although the construction proceeded slowly, by 1893 the sewer could drain suburban and downtown waste. Waste traveled south through six-foot wide brick and concrete pipes on Main Street and west on 500 South to a sump at the Jordan River, where it entered the Surplus Canal and then flowed to the Great Salt Lake. Yet the pump remained underpowered and carried only forty percent of sewage to the canal. This left sixty percent of the sewage to enter the Jordan River, where it decimated the native duck and trout population and sickened the inhabitants of the riverside. Thus in 1894, city engineer Abraham Doremus designed a new brick to the color ‘white’ as the Japanese, and therefore ought to be turned away at once.” Matthew Frye Jacobson, Whiteness of a Different Color: European Immigrants and the Alchemy of Race (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1998), 76–77. 51 Second Annual Message of the Mayor with the Annual Reports of the Officers of Salt Lake City, Utah, for the Year 1889 (Salt Lake City, 1890), 13–15, 63–71, Series 4882, City Documents, no. 2, USHS; Deseret News, October 17, 1888; “Interviews with Greeks in Utah,” Mr. and Mrs. Michael Bapis, box 1, fd. 7, p. 3, Mr. and Mrs. Paul Borovilos, fd. 11, p. 2, MS 479, JWML; Deseret News, October 25, 1892; Salt Lake Tribune, June 1, 1892.

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gravity sewer to drain filth from 400 East and 900 South in a northwesterly direction to its westernmost point at 400 West and South Temple, and then to a sewage farm near Hot Springs lake, four miles north of the city. According to the Tribune, the new gravity sewer seemed to be full of promise, as it was adequately powered, expertly designed, and able to serve “the best residence portion and the business center of the city.” However, it only had the capability to receive sewage from the areas east and north of it, or about two-thirds of the city. “The sewage of the west side,” the Tribune noted, “will have to flow into another sewer lying south and north along the Jordan. . . . This is a future consideration however.”52 The new gravity sewer began operation in 1896, with nearly all of its customers receiving service by 1905. Although it experienced some leaking and cracking, it functioned well enough to remove excreta from the city’s confines. The Salt Lake Herald observed the technology’s salubrious effect, proclaiming, “Salt Lake is growing healthier all the time.”53 Yet this proclamation overlooked the condition of areas without sewers. Although the city made plans to improve the Westside, known as Sewer District Two, bond sales and construction did not commence until 1906, with sewer service not starting until 1911 and in some cases not until the 1930s. In the meantime, wastewater and excreta from homes in the east, north, and downtown without sewers collected in western wells, lots, and canals. Although health officials such as the physician Martha Hughes Cannon acknowledged this problem, they advocated a short-term solution—using new dry-earth closets and boiling water before consuming it—rather than a more difficult and expensive long-term fix.54 Beginning in the 1890s and continuing throughout the early 1900s, Salt Lake City experienced an unprecedented level of contagion. Shallow wells appeared to be the main culprits. Between August and October 1894, typhoid fever sickened 103 people, thirty-four of whom died, resulting in the highest mortality rate in the city’s history. While people throughout Salt Lake City suffered, those in the Westside suffered more. The Salt Lake Tribune reported that the “vast majority of cases manifest[ed] themselves in the western part of the city where the ground is low and damp and affording, at present, poor facilities for drainage.”55 52

Salt Lake Tribune, December 28, 1895, January 11, 1894; Message of the Mayor with the Annual Reports of the Officers of Salt Lake City, Utah, for the Year 1893 (Salt Lake City: Salt Lake Lithographic, 1894), 55–56, 117. 53 Salt Lake Herald, November 23, 1902. 54 Salt Lake Telegram, February 5, 1910; “Sewerage System of Salt Lake City,” Journal of the Association of Engineering Societies 42 (1909), map; Message of the Mayor 1893, 55–56; Sherilyn Cox Bennion, “The Salt Lake Sanitarian: Medical Adviser to the Saints,” Utah Historical Quarterly 57 (Spring 1989), 125–37; Mari Grana, Pioneer, Polygamist, Politician: The Life of Dr. Martha Hughes Cannon (Helena, MT: Twodot Press, 2009), 95. 55 “Samuel A. Woolley,” boxes 1–2, MS D 1556, CHL; Salt Lake Tribune, January 1, 27, 1895. For instance, the son of Samuel A. Woolley succumbed to the disease; the Woolleys lived at 405 South and 300 East.

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Nine years later, in 1903, an epidemic Concentrations of several ethnic occurred after Westsiders drank from a well groups developed in Salt Lake infected with typhoid bacillus. Their symp- City from roughly 1900 to 1920. toms included high fever, abdominal pain, The city’s Chinatown predated and rashes, although some of these infected these enclaves by about thirty people remained asymptomatic and unwit- years and was in disrepair by tingly passed germs on to others. At the peak 1900. of the outbreak, local health officials counted sixty-five victims of typhoid but suspected many more because hiding from officials was a common practice, particularly among the foreign poor who feared deportation. After mapping the disease, health officials concluded that the epidemic had originated from a well at 300 West and 900 South.56 Finally, in 1909 the city experienced the “most serious typhoid fever epidemic in its history,” with 721 cases in the Westside, 184 in the Eastern Slope, and 268 in the Avenues. Interestingly, the Salt Lake Herald noted that “foreigners dying in Salt Lake largely outnumber[ed] other classes with 376. Natives of the city passing away were 193 in number and 294 were natives of Utah.” Just so, immigrants who sought medical attention had surnames such as Cappucio, Cannochi, Capiccosi, Koukopoulos, Kootsuki, and Skiliris.57 56

Salt Lake Herald, August 29, 1903. Ibid., September 21, February 3, 1909. Helen Papanikolas recalled that Greek women were “very secretive” and “frantic” over contracting tuberculosis. “Interviews with Greeks in Utah,” Helen Papanikolas, box 2, fd. 3, p. 12. 57

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In response to this outbreak, city officials and civic groups launched a statewide campaign to educate the public about cleanliness, sanitation, and hygiene. The campaign revolved around annual “cleanup crusades,” which lasted throughout the 1930s and evidenced the new science of vector ecology. Crusades were common in cities during the Progressive Era and targeted vehicles of disease transmission, including unwashed bodies, uncovered garbage cans, leaky garbage wagons, unpasteurized milk, impure food and ice, and the housefly—“the worst immigrant.”58 Educational programs appeared in public schools, while organizations such as the Chamber of Commerce and the Utah Federation of Women’s Clubs worked to educate—and demean—foreigners in particular about the dangers of dirt and the need for domestic and personal cleanliness. To them, foreigners seemed to be ignorant, unable, or unwilling to embrace American standards of health and progress. Although environmental and personal health remained connected, the Salt Lake Herald chose to stress individual responsibility alone, saying, “The great majority of the people [in the Westside] pay no attention to sanitation.” The Salt Lake Telegram conceded this point by making scapegoats of domestic servants, many of whom were foreign and black women, for spreading typhoid fever by mishandling waste: “Another point that can be made with justice is that housekeepers are careless about their disposal of garbage. Very few of them know how to handle it.” Nurses at local hospitals agreed with the Herald and privately chastised industrial workers —particularly miners and railroad workers, the majority of whom lived in the Westside—for their “low standards of living.” In addition, public school teachers noted that the “children of immigrants [remained] eager to play but reluctant to wash.”59 From the early 1900s until the 1920s, Salt Lake City’s non-white immigrant population of Greeks, Italians, and Mexicans swelled to nearly five thousand persons. Pushed by economic and political turmoil in their native lands and pulled by job opportunities in Utah’s expanding mining and railroad industries, these “new” immigrants often settled in ethnic enclaves throughout the Westside. Following the arrival of the Utah Central and Denver and Rio Grande Western railroads in the late nineteenth century, the western half of Salt Lake City evolved from a marginal agricultural space formerly inhabited by people of British and Scandinavian descent (both Mormon and non-Mormon) to an industrial district populated by dark and olive-skinned immigrants from southern and eastern Europe and Latin America. 58 Richards, Of Medicine, 196; “A Brief History of Utah Federation of Women’s Clubs, 1912–1950,” October 1912–October 1914, box 1, fd. 1, Women’s Clubs Records, JWML; Salt Lake Herald, January 24, 1909. 59 Salt Lake Telegram, December 30, 1903, July 9, 1910, September 4, 1903; Ramjoue, “The Negro in Utah,” 21; “Interviews with Japanese in Utah,” Jasuo Sasaki, box 3, fd. 4, p. s1:15, Accn. 1209, JWML.

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These foreigners typically found jobs in railroad yards and depots, tool shops, factories, mines, and smelters. They settled as families or as fictive kin to offset the high cost of living. Tenements and cheap hotels filled the city’s Greek Town, Little Italy, and Mexican Town, which were bounded by South Temple and 600 South on the north and south and 100 West and 500 West on the east and west. In contrast to the suburbs and downtown, these enclaves witnessed rising dirt and noise due to industrial growth, which combined with fetid canals, poisoned wells, and garbage-strewn lots to drive health and property values down. White onlookers tended to view these foreigners with a combination of sympathy and disgust. For instance, Katherine Groebli, a graduate student in public health at the University of Utah, studied immigrant housing in the Westside where, she acknowledged, the “contrast between filth and cleanliness was the most evident.” Housing normally lacked shower and toilet facilities, although a few places offered “modern conveniences” for a premium. “Adobe and cheap frame” multi-family units cost less to rent, but they remained “the most unsanitary.” Although the city provided free housing for the sick-poor—especially those with tuberculosis, a “poverty disease” that afflicted the cold and the hungry—this housing usually lacked adequate resources, including hot water and furnaces, and thus exacerbated an “endless chain of misery.” Moreover, white landlords typically charged foreigners higher rent than they did native-born Americans. While immigrants such as the Japanese might be “a clean, energetic and advancing people,” Groebli reasoned, most others were “careless and shiftless.” In particular, she concluded, the Italians and Greeks were willing to tolerate the “most unsanitary conditions.”60 Yet many circumstances hindered the ability of these people to leave such conditions. Restrictive housing covenants based on race and ethnicity discouraged and prevented people considered to be non-white from owning homes in desirable areas; likewise, meager incomes forced nearly ninety percent of immigrants to rent rather than buy property. If foreigners desired sanitary improvements, they often faced absentee landlords who were unwilling to pay the “oppressive costs” of sanitary improvements. Landlords also frequently hid the “inherent defects” of their property to escape city fines.61 Thus, Greek immigrants such as Andy Katsanevas remembered cleanliness being an elusive experience. He endured insults such as “dirty Greek” and remembered identifying more as “Greek and not [as an] 60 Katherine Elizabeth Groebli, “On the Housing Problem in Salt Lake City” (master’s thesis, University of Utah, 1915), 3, 5, 15, 18, 22, 46; Thirteenth Census, Table IV, 890. 61 Deseret News, November 14, 1890, August 20, 1905; F. C. Kelsey, “Map of Salt Lake City, Utah, City Engineer’s Office, Showing Sewer System” (1896), in author’s possession; “Minutes of the Meetings of the Salt Lake County Board of Public Welfare, August 28, 1935,” September 6, 1935, Salt Lake County Welfare Board Minutes 1933–1946, 1937–1942, 03-522, box W-1, Salt Lake County Archives, Salt Lake City, Utah. In one case, the Welfare Board found that a “landlord would not make basic sanitary improvements because the renting family was too poor to pay anything.”

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American while living on the Westside.” The neighborhood of the Denver Similarly, Mary Mousalimas recalled growing and Rio Grande railroad, seen up dirty like a “‘nigger.’” George Zeese, here in 1917, served as a locus of meanwhile, tried to improve his condition by much Westside ethnic settlement. taking showers at the Young Men’s Christian Academy, only to endure the mockery of onlookers.62 The parents of Rebecca Alvera exemplified the experience of many Mexicans who arrived in Utah after the Mexican Revolution of 1910. Alternately taunted as a “greaser” and a “dirty Mexican,” Alvera lived at 602 West and 700 South in an abandoned railroad car whose seats were removed, but which lacked a toilet. The Alvera family suffered the loss of eleven of twelve children, likely due to sanitary diseases, as did the family of John Florez, whose six siblings fatally drank diphtheria-laced “water used by railroad engines.” 63 As water-borne illnesses are often contagious, overcrowding amplifies the problem of poor sanitation. Because the average family size among Salt Lake City’s “poorer classes” was six, population density deepened the crisis created by the lack of waterworks for nearly four thousand residents and lack of sewer connections for nearly fifteen thousand.64 In turn-of-the-century Salt Lake City, then, sanitation existed as a 62 Message of the Mayor 1893, 117; “Interviews with Greeks in Utah,” box 1, fd. 12, pp. 5, 56, Mary Mousalimas, box 3, fd. 5, p. 22, JWML; Helen Papanikolas, A Greek Odyssey in the American West (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1987), 287. 63 “Interviews with Hispanics in Utah,” box 1, fd. 4, fd. 9, pp. 4–5, s1:3–15, Accn. 1369, JWML. 64 Report of the Utah–White House Conference on Child Health and Protection, April 6 and 7, 1931 (Salt Lake City, 1931), 1–2; J. Wesley Noall, “Quality of Water Supply of Salt Lake City,” (master’s thesis, University of Utah, 1931), 48; David C. Martin and Arnold M. Marston, “Well Development for Salt Lake City Water Supply,” (master’s thesis, University of Utah, 1931); D. C. Houston and Rey M. Hill, Health Conditions and Facilities in Utah (Salt Lake City: Utah State Planning Board, 1936), 40–43.

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municipal improvement mainly accessible to the wealthy and the white. Communal in name only, public health ended up serving particular interests. Those parties benefitted greatly from industrial growth and population increases, but they remained unwilling to manage the more unsavory effects of such growth. Salt Lake City’s authorities followed the national trend of delimiting waterworks to certain neighborhoods: first to the central business district (at public expense) and then to the suburbs such as the Eastern Slope, Sugar House, and the Avenues. The perception of these places as “the most healthful portions of the city,” in the Salt Lake Herald’s words, helped to reinforce the city’s shifting socio-cultural map.65 Religious contention appeared occasionally during water and sewer construction, but it paled in comparison to the more powerful politics of race and class. These considerations became physically manifested in the squalor of Westside neighborhoods and the sickness and death of Westside residents. Affluent Salt Lakers thus presided—knowingly and unknowingly —over Progressive Era–health reforms that created a social-medical hierarchy that placed themselves at the top and less acceptable Japanese, Chinese, Greek, Italian, and Mexican immigrants at the bottom.

65

Salt Lake Herald, September 21, 1900.

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I

n anticipation of holiday celebrations, A turkey farm, in approximately an 1897 issue of the Deseret News Weekly the 1940s. ran a column detailing how a “housemother” could best prepare her Thanksgiving table. One hoped, of course, that a succulent roast turkey would form the center of that feast, but the columnist recognized that such a treat would not fit in every family’s budget. Not to worry: if a young bird was unavailable “and nothing short of a patriarch is available, do not despair; as an hour’s preliminary steaming will plump him, make him tender, and in good condition for roasting.” Yet “if even the honored bird—the turkey—flies too high for the housewife of limited resources, ‘mock duck’ can essay its place at a quarter of the cost.”1 As the Deseret News piece made clear, turkeys—in spite of their exalted place in American cuisine—were not always an item easily obtained. And in Utah, the ability of a home cook to present a turkey at the Thanksgiving feast might well be entwined with the intricacies of technology, markets, and transportation systems. How, then, did turkeys become a thriving element of Utah’s agricultural economy in the twentieth century? Natives and pioneers had uses for the bird, but the development of a profitable turkey industry required technological advancements, adequate financing, and the concerted action of organizations and individuals. Turkeys have a long history in the state of Utah. Paleontologists found turkey-like fossils in the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument in a formation dated to be some 76 million years old.2 Though wild turkeys

Dale W Adams lives in Park City and is professor emeritus, The Ohio State University. Michele Adams, Ricky Christensen, Nancy Garlick, and Dr. Robert E. Warnick assisted with this article. I especially appreciate insights provided by Leonard Blackham.

1

“Domestic Science,” Deseret News Weekly, December 4, 1897. Lindsay E. Zanno and Scott D. Sampson, “A New Oviraptorosaur (Theropoda, Maniraptora) from the Late Cretaceous (Campanian) of Utah,” Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 25 (2005): 897–904. 2

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Grasshoppers, Thanksgiving Dinner, and Utah Turkeys


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probably did not exist in Utah prior to 1847, Indians in southeast Utah had numerous domesticated turkeys, raising them for many purposes besides food.3 Numerous Mormon pioneers brought turkeys with them to the Great Basin. These bronze, relatively small, birds were of the Narragansett breed. Within a few years, a handful of turkeys, strutting around a farmyard, became a familiar sight in the Utah Territory. Rudimentary markets for the birds soon developed, as shown by an advertisement from a Salt Lake City entrepreneur, George Goddard, who offered to buy fat turkeys.4 By the late 1850s, turkeys had become common enough that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints posted a price of $1.50 to $2.50 for each turkey submitted as tithing.5 By 1858, merchants in Salt Lake City regularly sold live turkeys during the holidays. William Jennings’s Deseret Meat and General Provisions Store offered a supply of meats that included “turkeys that were as good as it was possible to raise any place.”6 Jennings bragged that he had sold one turkey that year for the princely sum of twenty-five dollars, perhaps an exaggeration since a so-so horse fetched less than this at the time. Similar sales of live turkeys during the holiday season increased in other communities around the territory. The pioneers, like the Indians before them, had various reasons for raising turkeys. In 1848, Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimball included turkeys on a list of animals they recommended to bring west because of their value in insect control.7 Before 1848, Great Basin insects had hopped and crawled long distances in their quest for sprigs of greenery, but the pioneers’ irrigated crops soon provided them sumptuous banquets. What came to be called Mormon Crickets, along with grasshoppers, were, and still are, a nuisance for Utah farmers. Utahns designated the California gull as their state bird because of its role in lessening the crop damage done by swarms of crickets during the spring of 1848. Had domesticated turkeys existed in number by then, they might have been accorded this recognition instead. Turkeys especially helped to control insects in the Uinta Basin where farmers relied on alfalfa, a crop relished by grasshoppers and weevils. After spending a week touring the basin in 1923, Thomas Redmond reported seeing more turkeys there than he had ever seen elsewhere in the state.8 He 3

Chester A. Thomas, “Did Utah Have Turkeys in 1200 A.D.?” Utah Fish and Game Magazine 13 (1957): 5. 4 Deseret News, January 9, 1856. Goddard sold a full, hot meal at his Refreshment Saloon, Bakery, and Confectionary Establishment for twenty-five cents. At these prices, one could exchange a large turkey for ten meals at Goddard’s. In 2013, a similar turkey might sell for the equivalent price of one modest meal at an average Salt Lake City restaurant, which demonstrates the dramatic decline in the relative prices of turkeys since pioneer times. 5 Deseret News, May 20, 1857. 6 Deseret News, December 29, 1858. 7 Journal History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, August 1848, CR 100 137, Church History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah (hereafter CHL). 8 Vernal (UT) Express, September 14, 1923.

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mentioned that insects had severely damaged crops the previous spring, but that turkeys had protected alfalfa during 1923. Farmers asserted that turkeys allowed them to have three crops: alfalfa hay, alfalfa seed, and the turkeys themselves. Eventually, turkeys helped control insects throughout the state, and were occasionally hauled long distances for that purpose. In 1945 Wilford Larsen partially raised 2,500 turkeys in Orem before trucking them hundreds of miles south to Indian Creek, located northwest of Monticello, to the Scorup-Somerville Cattle Company ranch. There they feasted on swarms of grasshoppers that infested alfalfa fields.9 The beginnings of a commercial turkey industry in Utah can be traced to the 1880s. Until then, several factors—including a restricted ability to incubate and market turkeys—limited flock size to a few dozen birds, and insect control was a major reason for having them. Hens hatched their own eggs, turkeys foraged for much of their sustenance, and they were usually sold live. Turkey growers mostly provided supplemental feed to poults and sometimes to adults several weeks before selling them. Most turkeys were consumed near the places where they were raised. The invention of small kerosene incubators in the 1880s enabled a few farmers to increase their flocks to a few hundred turkeys, and this helped boost Utah’s total turkey production to perhaps a hundred thousand birds by 1900.10 These simple incubators cost about thirty dollars and could hatch up to 180 eggs at a time. Limited means of transporting and selling turkeys outside a farmer’s local area also constrained flock sizes; this did not begin to change until the early 1900s. One early out-of-area shipment occurred when Ernest Hafen and Theodore Graf hauled a wagonload of live turkeys and chickens from Santa Clara, Utah, to sell to miners in Caliente and Pioche, Nevada, during the 1908 Christmas holiday.11 Two years later, Andrew Sproul Jr. from the nearby community of Washington hauled 150 dressed birds north to Modena for shipment by rail to Ogden12 Similar sales of turkeys some distance from where they had been raised began in other Utah communities around the same time. Eventually, railroads played a major role in facilitating the marketing of Utah turkeys inside and outside of the state. Another technological improvement—the invention of the Smith Electric Incubator at the beginning of the First World War—furthered the development of Utah’s turkey industry. The Smith incubator, accompanied by the importation of poults from California and Oregon (where turkey eggs hatched more readily), allowed a few farmers to boost their flock sizes to 9

Times Independent (Moab, UT), June 28, 1945. The Twelfth Census of the United States, 1900, vol. V, Agriculture, Farms, Livestock, and Animal Products (p. 668), enumerated about eleven thousand turkeys in Utah, but because the census occurred in January, the overall number of birds in the state later in the year would have been some multiple of this. 11 Washington County News (St. George, UT), November 5, 1908. 12 Ibid., November 24, 1910. 10

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around a thousand birds.13 Before World War I, Utah was a net importer of turkeys and other poultry to satisfy holiday needs, with the worth of turkey, chickens, and eggs imported annually amounting to perhaps a half million dollars.14 Dressed turkeys were shipped to Utah in barrels via rail, but they sold at a discount in comparison to local birds. In 1905 imported turkeys sold for thirteen cents a pound wholesale, while fresh, local turkeys sold for eighteen cents a pound. 15 This changed soon after the war when Utah became a net exporter of poultry products, amounting to about half a million dollars in revenue each year, part of which came from turkey sales. The U.S. Department of Agriculture did not collect statistics on turkey production in Utah until 1929, but the total number in the state likely was not much more than one hundred thousand in any year before WWI. Between 1900 and the early 1930s islands of commercial turkey production gradually formed around the state, with concentrations in the Uinta Basin, around St. George, in Iron County, in Sanpete and Sevier Counties, in Utah Valley, and along the Wasatch Front from Salt Lake County to Box Elder County, including the Cache Valley. Initially, these islands involved a few farmers who raised up to a thousand birds each, one or more local merchants who sold feed, and perhaps one or more entrepreneurs who arranged to “pool� turkeys for shipment to cities during the holiday season. After the mid-1920s these islands of production increasingly concentrated around new processing plants. One of the first areas of commercial production emerged in the Uinta Basin, a trend facilitated in part by motorized vehicles. In 1914, a few turkey growers in the basin shipped their birds to Salt Lake City during the holidays. Soon, several local businessmen bought turkeys for resale, and along with some of the larger growers, shipped dressed turkeys out of the basin by parcel post.16 In 1915, William Witbeck sent a thousand dressed turkeys from the basin to Salt Lake City via parcel post with good economic results.17 Favorable farm prices during WWI induced growers to boost the number of turkeys raised in many parts of Utah, including the Uinta Basin. For the 1920 Thanksgiving season the Post Office hauled about ten thousand pounds of turkeys from Vernal to Price, from which point they went by rail to Los Angeles.18 In 1922, the American Poultry Association handled the Thanksgiving marketing in Los Angeles, and the Uintah County Farm Bureau arranged for the pooling of turkeys for 13 All eggs are permeable. Low levels of oxygen in the air reduce the ability of poults to peck through the thick membrane and shell of a turkey egg. 14 Washington County News (St. George, UT), September 20, 1923. 15 Deseret News, December 11, 1905. 16 Roosevelt (UT) Standard, November 9, 1914. 17 Doris Karren Burton, A History of Uintah County: Scratching the Surface (Salt Lake City: Utah State Historical Society and Uintah County Commission, 1996), 118. 18 Vernal (UT) Express, November 26, 1920.

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shipment. 19 The Far m Bureau also helped to ship an additional two railroad cars of dressed turkeys to Omaha for the Christmas market that year. A number of far mers in the basin increased the size of their flocks because of these opportunities to export turkeys out of the state. F. O. Lundberg, for example, who lived in Fort Duchesne, had several hundred turkeys in 1922 but increased his flock to about 1,500 birds the next year. 20 Uinta Basin growers raised some forty thousand turkeys in 1923.21 Elsewhere in the state, other centers of commercial production likewise developed in the 1920s and 1930s. In Park J. Arza Adams with his turkey Valley, Box Elder County, L. G. Cater had two flock, in Pleasant Grove. thousand turkeys in 1923, the largest number in that part of the state.22 Within a couple of years, he and several other growers in the county were raising about six thousand turkeys. Ray S. Tanner in Indianola, Sanpete County, started with a small flock of about a hundred birds imported from California and Colorado in 1923. From these he raised about one thousand turkeys, saving three hundred of them to be laying hens. The next year a hatchery in Manti processed his eggs and produced enough poults for Tanner to sell a railroad car full of turkeys in 1924.23 Gradually, these centers of turkey production concentrated around hatcheries and processing plants. Moroni Sanders, Ervil Sanders, Bill Sanders, and E. J. Graff developed hatcheries that specialized in turkeys in La Verkin in the early 1930s.24 They had flocks that produced eggs, and 19

Ibid., December 8, 1922. Ibid., September 14, 1923. 21 Ibid., November 2, 1923. 22 Box Elder News (Brigham City, UT), November 13, 1923. 23 Albert C. T. Antrei and Ruth D. Scow, eds., The Other Forty-Niners: A Topical History of Sanpete County, Utah 1849–1983 (Salt Lake City: Western Epics, 1982), 297. 24 Daughters of the Utah Pioneers, Washington County Chapter, Under Dixie Sun: A History of Washington County by Those Who Loved Their Forbears (Panguitch, UT: Garfield County News, 1950), 402. 20

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their facilities took advantage of the better hatching conditions in that area. Ervil Sanders delivered poults throughout Utah and into Colorado. Along with these hatching activities, other local businessmen formed the La Verkin Feed and Hardware Company to provide feed for the poultry industry around La Verkin. For a number of years after WWII, turkeys remained a multimillion-dollar business in the area. An additional concentration of turkey production emerged in Utah County, where Andrew W. Pulley began raising turkeys in American Fork in the early 1920s. To provide feed for his flock, Pulley and his sons John and Adolphus built a feed mill in 1926.25 They added a processing plant in 1935 and eventually raised as many as twenty thousand turkeys a year. The Pulleys’ experience encouraged other farmers in the north end of Utah Valley to experiment with turkeys. Partly because of the increased local interest in turkeys, American Fork City celebrated Poultry Days from 1923 to 1941. Fittingly, Andrew Pulley’s daughter, Mary Pulley, became the first Poultry Day Queen in 1923.26 The commercialization of turkeys in Utah was closely tied to the building of modern processing plants that supported the surrounding centers of production. Charles Rudd built the first such plant in about 1925 in Salt Lake City and eventually helped to erect seventeen other plants around the state. Before these plants existed, turkey growers, such as Joseph Jones of Enoch, had invited their neighbors to help kill and remove feathers from a hundred or so birds at a time. In contrast, the modern processing plants could handle thousands of turkeys a day, under more sanitary conditions, and then immediately store them in cooling facilities. Despite the growth of the turkey industry in the 1920s and 1930s, several difficulties checked the ability of growers to market turkeys outside of their local areas. For instance, growers needed standard methods of killing the birds, cleaning them, and packaging them for shipment. Extension agents from the Utah State Agricultural College (USAC) gave lectures around the state on how to prepare turkeys for commercial sales.27 The unavailability of prepared poultry feed presented a further impediment to turkey production. Before WWI, growers in most Utah communities did not have access to prepared feed. After the war, commercial feed producers, such as Sperry, General Mills, and Purina, increasingly distributed prepared poultry feed through agents; several cooperatives, and some private firms, also began to manufacture poultry feed. 25 Betty G. Spencer, American Fork City: The Growing Years (American Fork, UT: American Fork City, 2006), 286. 26 Ibid., 196. Later, the Pulleys provided an interesting footnote to the history of Utah’s turkey industry. In 1942, in response to WWII labor shortages, more than four hundred Japanese-American internees at Topaz volunteered to work away from the camp. Some fifty men and women from this group worked at the Pulley processing plant in American Fork; each earned nineteen dollars a month. See Millard County Chronicle (Delta, UT), October 14, 29, 1942. 27 Roosevelt (UT) Standard, August 20, 1924.

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A handful of individuals and several organizations played key roles in the rapid growth of the turkey industry after WWI. The switch from the state being an importer of turkeys to becoming a substantial exporter in the 1920s, for example, can be attributed largely to the efforts of Benjamin Brown and to a cooperative he organized. Born near Odessa, Ukraine, in 1885, he migrated to the United States at fifteen. During a brief stint in the National Farm School, a facility to train Jewish men and women in agricultural skills, he was inspired by the “Back to the Soil” movement that led to the establishment of about forty Jewish farm colonies around the United States.28 Over two years, Brown recruited several dozen Jews to settle in an area immediately west of Gunnison, Utah. The settlement, called Clarion, began in 1911 and encompassed about six thousand acres. But the soil proved to be poor, the irrigation system was unreliable, the settlers had limited agricultural experience, and, even more importantly, they lacked social cohesion. Despite financial support from local benefactors, the project collapsed and most of the settlers left Utah. Undaunted, Brown continued to farm with his brother. Within a few years he became director of the Paiute Reservoir and Irrigation System and was elected president of the Gunnison Valley Canning Company. He also managed a cattle feedlot and took the lead in building a cold storage and ice plant in Gunnison. This facility later made it possible for an association of central Utah poultrymen to export their products outside the state. Although numerous farmers in central Utah raised poultry before WWI, the market for their products was extremely limited. To deal with this problem, federal extension agents urged farmers to organize, and this resulted in the 1922 formation of a three-county group called the Nephi, Manti, and Richfield Poultry Association. The genesis of what would eventually become the Utah Poultry Producers’ Cooperative can be traced to a meeting held in Gunnison on August 13, 1922.29 Brown hosted the meeting that focused on forming a marketing group. Later, in early October, the Central Utah Poultry Association was organized in Gunnison. This private marketing firm covered Sanpete, Sevier, and Juab counties.30 Brown and his exchange handled the candling and grading of eggs and also arranged for the sale of eggs, chickens, and turkeys, mostly in California.31 The exchange provided three important functions: pooling products into carload lots, enforcing uniform grading standards, and arranging for buyers outside the state. For the Thanksgiving market in 1922, Brown shipped two railroad cars of turkeys grown around Gunnison and Elsinore to the Harry Phillips’s Company in Los Angeles.32 The favorable 28 Robert A. Goldberg, Back to the Soil: The Jewish Farmers of Clarion, Utah, and Their World (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 1986). 29 Gunnison (UT) Valley News, August 18, 1922. 30 Ibid., October 12, 1922. 31 Candling eggs involves putting them over a bright light and discarding those eggs with blood spots. 32 Gunnison (UT) Valley News, November 23, 1922.

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prices that farmers received prompted a surge in local egg and turkey production the following year. The selling of railroad carload lots of poultry products outside the state removed a huge bottleneck for poultry farmers in central Utah and later for poultry farmers throughout the state. Both a visionary and a promoter, Brown recognized that his exchange was instrumental in opening profitable markets for Utah’s poultry products. To fully exploit that market, however, he needed a larger organization. Together with Har r y H. Metzgar from Richfield, Brown visited Los Angeles and Petaluma, California, in 1922 in pursuit of more business contacts on the West Coast, many of which were arranged through the Utah Farm Bureau. Brown’s agents in Los Benjamin Brown, an important Angeles told him they could sell all the poultry leader in Utah’s early turkey products he could send them, and owners of industry. hatcher ies in Califor nia offered to ship hatching eggs, chicks, and poults to Utah by rail at attractive prices. Brown was brimming with enthusiasm when he returned to Utah, and in early January he met with Farm Bureau leaders in Salt Lake City. From these meetings came a proposal to form what the Gunnison newspaper called a “Gigantic Corporation” to promote a statewide organization to foster the poultry industry.33 With Utah Farm Bureau’s support, Brown soon met with farmers in Utah and Salt Lake counties to spark their interest in a poultry marketing organization. Concurrently, a Utah Farm Bureau lawyer, Frank Evans, began looking into formalizing a statewide organization, drawing mostly on the tri-county exchange that Brown had helped to establish earlier. At a meeting held in Salt Lake City on January 27, 1923, and sponsored by the Utah Farm Bureau, a number of farmers met to form a new association. The association designated Brown as its marketing agent and authorized him to charge a one-cent commission on each dozen eggs that he sold. Evans acted quickly and filed incorporation articles on February 2 with the Salt Lake County Court for an organization initially called the Utah Poultry Producers Association.34 By the end of 1923, more than five hundred farmers, mainly in Sanpete, Sevier, Juab, and Utah counties, had 33

Ibid., January 4, 1923. In October 1923, the Utah Poultry Producers Association was converted to a cooperative and given the name of the Utah Poultry Producers Cooperative. Ibid., October 30, 1923. In 1948, the organization again changed its name to the Utah Poultry and Farmers Cooperative. 34

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joined the poultry cooperative. Initially, most of them had laying hens, but a few were also experimenting with turkeys. Utah Poultry also played a key part in the creation of the modern processing plants so critical to the industry’s development by hiring Charles Rudd and purchasing his Salt Lake City plant. In addition to Benjamin Brown, two other individuals were also instrumental in forming and later expanding Utah Poultry: Albertus Willardson, a cattleman, and Clyde C. Edmonds, a banker, both from Gunnison. 35 Initially, Willardson was the assistant manager of the cooperative; later, he moved to Los Angeles to handle marketing there for the organization. Edmonds served as the first secretary and treasurer of the cooperative and then became its long time general manager when Brown left in 1926 to establish a marketing agency in New York City.36 In 1930, seeing the need for a separate organization for turkey growers, Edmonds helped to form a multistate marketing organization initially called the Northwest Turkey Growers Association—subsequently called Norbest. Continuing his duties with Utah Poultry, Edmonds also became the turkey cooperative’s first general manager. Norbest was preceded by the formation of a committee in 1930 whose purpose was to create a turkey growers’ association in Utah.37 Extension agents helped establish these county-based turkey grower associations.38 By the mid-1930s, more than 2,500 farmers in Utah raised turkeys, and most of the larger growers (including many members of the county associations) joined Norbest. Another key individual in Utah’s nascent turkey industry was Herbert Beyers, who, as a member of the Oregon Turkey Growers Association, had worked to find dependable markets for turkeys.39 Beyers’s experience led Edmonds to hire him as the assistant general manager of the Northwestern Turkey Growers Association in 1932. Two years later, the association appointed Beyers as its general manager, a position he ably filled for thirtyfive years. He was largely responsible for establishing the Norbest brand’s reputation for quality. In the decade from the end of WWI to the start of the depression in 1929, the number of turkeys raised in Utah possibly more than doubled to a quarter million; over the next eleven years, the number quadrupled to more than a million birds. The increase during the 1930s occurred despite major swings in the prices of turkeys and in the prices farmers paid for a 35 For further information on Edmonds, see Clyde C. Edmonds Papers 1911, 1937–1957, MSS 1426, L. Tom Perry Special Collections, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah. 36 Stacie Lloyd Duce, The History of the Intermountain Farmers’ Association (Salt Lake City: Intermountain Farmers’ Association, 2013). 37 Roosevelt (UT) Standard, May 29, 1930. A. DeMarr Dudley (Jensen), S. R. Boswell (Richfield), Landwig Olson (Ephraim), H. E, Calderwood (Coalville), B. M. Mendenhall (Springville), Albertus Willardson, and Byron Alder (Logan) were the initial members of the committee. 38 Roosevelt (UT) Standard, October 23, 1930. 39 Herbert Beyers Collection: American Poultry Historical Society Papers, HD9437.5 T873U63R, United States Department of Agriculture, National Agricultural Library, Beltsville, Maryland.

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primary component in turkey feed—corn. The turkey producers who survived these ups and downs in prices became hardened risk takers. As farmers increased the size of their flocks, they had problems financing their enterprises. Small rural banks could not provide sufficient loans, and the collapse of many banks during the early 1930s exacerbated financing problems. Farmers found some relief from this shortage of credit after the Farm Credit Act of 1933. It created the government-supported Farm Credit System, which established four groups of lending institutions. Among these institutions was the Bank for Cooperatives that supported farmer cooperatives. Utah Poultry increasingly borrowed from the Bank for Cooperatives, and, in turn, provided short-term financing for some turkey farmers. Later, the Moroni Feed Company offered similar types of financing to members of its cooperative in Sanpete County. Despite the assistance farmers received from these organizations, raising turkeys was a risky business, compared to most other poultry and livestock enterprises. The birds required shelter when young and when the weather was hot or inclement. Occasionally, turkey farmers suffered losses in severe storms. For example, growers in American Fork and Pleasant Grove lost a total of about ten thousand turkeys in a severe storm in July 1943, with one grower losing most of his flock.40 Early turkey varieties were flighty and prone to pile into bushes when alarmed by unexpected noises such as airplanes or when frightened by predators or other animals. Moreover, it took some years before growers fully understood the nutritional requirements of the birds. In addition to an increase in the number of turkeys raised in Utah during the 1920s and 1930s, a major qualitative change in the birds occurred, beginning in 1937. Previously, most of the turkeys in Utah were of the Mammoth breed, an improved version of the earlier Narragansett variety. By the early 1930s, Jesse Throssel in Oregon had developed a much larger bird, the Broad Breasted Bronze. The Daniel E. Adams and Sons Hatchery in American Fork was one of the first in the state to import and hatch eggs from this new breed in 1937; within a few years it became the dominant variety in Utah. As the size of the industry increased, various disease problems intensified. Several diseases that afflicted young turkeys, for example, passed from parents to poults through eggs. In extreme cases, these diseases caused a fifty percent mortality rate in poults. The industry eventually learned to control this problem by blood testing parent stock before allowing eggs into certified hatcheries. The U.S. Department of Agriculture and USAC administered this certification. Blackhead was another major ailment that affected turkeys. It is a parasitic disease that was not fully understood until the 1940s. Initially, the 40

Salt Lake Tribune, July 18, 1943.

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losses from blackhead threatened the existence of the entire turkey industry, with some flock losses amounting to seventy percent. Scientists discovered that infected birds, particularly chickens and sparrows, passed the long-lived parasite to turkeys through their droppings. Because the disease only slightly affected other infected birds, such as chickens, the separation of turkeys from other birds was vital in controlling blackhead. Rotating turkeys onto fresh ground, raising them in confinement and on wire mesh, and administering new drugs eventually controlled the disease. In addition to diseases, the state’s turkey growers grappled with the recurring problems of volatility in the number of turkeys raised and in turkey prices. This instability became especially severe in 1936 and 1937. Between 1935 and 1936 the number of birds raised in the state more than tripled, but then fell by more than a quarter in 1937. In part, the stampede into turkey growing in 1936 was induced by a temporary recovery in the overall economy, accompanied by a fifty percent increase in turkey prices from 1934 to 1935. National feed companies, including General Mills, Ralston Purina, and Sperry, played a major role in this volatility. These companies recognized the business opportunity in Utah, and, in late 1935 and early 1936, they aggressively financed turkey production in the state and enrolled many new producers. The typical arrangement included the feed company providing the poults, supplying the feed on credit, and then handling the processing and sale of the birds, taking a commission on each transaction. Partly because of a decline in turkey prices in 1936, and partly due to the hefty commissions charged by the feed companies, numerous turkey farmers found at the end of the year that the receipts from the sale of their turkeys were less than their debts to the feed companies. This wrenching experience contributed to a sharp decline in the number of turkey farmers in the state from more than 2,600 in 1935 to only about 1,000 in 1940. From the depression years onward, turkey production in Utah became increasingly concentrated in Sanpete County, and the Moroni Feed Company—a farmers’ cooperative—played a central role in this.41 William Irons and Marion Jolley were the first commercial turkey growers in the area, starting with flocks of about five hundred birds in 1921. They later joined with Jake Anderson, Ray Seeley, Eldon Westenskow, Rex Kellet, and Ralph Blackham to form the Moroni Feed Company in 1938. Within a few years, with help from Utah Poultry, the group bought the property of the defunct local sugar mill in Moroni, acquired the processing plant that Utah Poultry had built in Moroni, began marketing its turkeys through Norbest, and built its own hatchery. Several factors contributed to Sanpete County becoming Utah’s turkey capital. Interest in turkeys in the county originated in the 1920s with 41 Moroni Feed Company, Moroni Feed Seventy-fifth Anniversary Memory Book (Moroni, UT: Moroni Feed Company, 2013).

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cutbacks in grazing rights on government lands that made raising sheep and livestock less profitable. The cutbacks were followed by a collapse of the local sugar beet industry, the distress caused by the Great Depression, and a prolonged drought. As a student of the business put it, “The turkey industry in Sanpete was a child of the depression.”42 Turkeys required little water, utilized underemployed labor, and consumed inexpensive local grains. Sanpete growers found marketing outlets through several new cooperatives that sprouted in central Utah. The experience gained by turkey farmers in Sanpete County during the difficult 1930s created a stock of managerial experience that reinforced by a strong cooperative, enabled growers there to persist in the business into the next millennium, while most other turkey production in Utah disappeared. From 1941 to the end of WWII, the number of turkeys raised in the state doubled, to more than two million birds. Military demand for animal products stimulated this increase, resulting in attractive wartime turkey prices. Many turkey farmers made enough profit during the war to pay off their debts and to capitalize their enterprises. The enthusiasm for raising turkeys in Utah and around the country led to the formation of the National Turkey Federation in 1939 and to the founding of the affiliated Utah Turkey Growers Federation in 1942.43 About 450 growers attended the first state convention in Salt Lake City, perhaps a fair measure of the total number of commercial turkey farmers in the state at the time. The election of Ralph Blackham from Moroni as the first president of this organization reflected the increasing importance of turkeys in Sanpete County, where more than one-third of the birds in Utah were then grown. Subsequently, the state federation held annual conventions; in 1948, it began holding turkey shows, occasionally in conjunction with its conventions. USAC staff conducted several studies of the turkey industry from 1942 to 1962. This included collecting information from growers in the four counties where about half of the state’s turkeys were grown: Box Elder, Cache, Sanpete, and Sevier.44 The authors of these studies documented the substantial changes that were shaping the industry. The first study took place after turkey production had increased almost five-fold, to more than one million birds, from 1935 to 1942. By 1961–1962 the number of turkeys had expanded to more than 3.5 million birds. Yet even as the numbers of turkeys increased, the number of turkey farms decreased. The authors noted that the percentage of farms in the state with turkeys declined from about fifteen percent in 1929 to less than five 42 Emmett R. Hayes, “Geographic Analysis of the Utah Turkey Industry” (master’s thesis, Brigham Young University, 1971), 20. 43 Salt Lake Telegram, December 8, 1950. 44 Dee A. Broadbent, W. Preston Thomas, and George T. Blanch, “Bulletin No. 318, An Economic Analysis of Turkey Production in Utah,” UAES Bulletins (Logan: Utah State Agricultural College, 1945); Roice H. Anderson, “Bulletin 445, Utah Turkey Industry—An Economic Appraisal” (Logan: Utah State Agricultural College, 1964).

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percent in 1940. They also reported on an The invention of bulk feeders, industry that was starting to specialize— such as those seen in this image, shrinking in terms of number of growers, but reduced labor demands on turkey continuing to expand in number of turkeys farms. raised. The average flock size in 1942 was only two or three thousand birds and many of the farmers had other agricultural enterprises; only six of the growers in Sanpete County, for example, specialized in turkeys. By 1961–1962, however, the average flock size in the state had about doubled, and many of the growers specialized in turkeys. Changes in several measures captured the growing efficiency of the industry during this period. The first was that the average mortality rate in the state among turkey flocks dropped from about one-third in 1940 to less than fifteen percent in 1962. The second revealing measure was a sharp decline in the all-important feed-conversion-ratio (pounds of feed used to produce a pound of turkey) from more than six to less than four pounds. Since feed expenses composed about two-thirds of the costs of raising turkeys, this improvement in feed efficiency strongly affected profitability. The third important measure was a sharp decline in the number of hours of labor required to produce a hundred pounds of turkey from 8.6 in 1940 to only 1.24 in 1962. In just two decades Utah’s turkey industry had become dramatically more efficient. The use of bulk and automatic feeders explained a major part of the decline in labor use. Walter Hansen, a local inventor who operated a machine shop in Ephraim, built some of the earliest bulk feeders in Utah.45 He had noted that feeding turkeys involved a lot of labor, including

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sacking feed, loading sacks on trucks, and then pouring the feed by hand into troughs. This led him to design and build metal turkey feeders that each held about a ton of feed. He also designed a bulk truck that hauled feed from the mill to the feeders without sacking, thus substantially reducing the time involved in feeding turkeys. Later, turkeys grown in confinement used labor-saving automatic feeders, further reducing labor costs. Traditionally, consumers bought turkeys mainly for Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners, and this led growers to organize production around these two markets. After WWII, leaders in the industry recognized the opportunity to expand turkey consumption beyond just holiday markets. The National Turkey Federation—assisted by state groups, including the Utah Turkey Growers Federation—took the lead in convincing consumers to eat more turkey. A major aspect of this effort in Utah was a vote taken by growers in 1947 to contribute money to fund the promotion of turkey consumption. These funds were used to support research, as well as advertising. This included urging consumers to eat turkey throughout the year and also to accept new turkey products, such as turkey in bologna, salami, frankfurters, and burgers, and turkey parts, steaks, and bacon.46 A deboning machine developed by a Utah firm, the Beehive Machine Company, was critical in the production of these new shapes. In 2013, a facility in Salina owned by the Moroni Feed Company processed about half of the turkeys raised in Utah into these new shapes. Another important change was the switch from selling “New York dressed” birds (which still had their heads, legs, and entrails) to marketing oven-ready birds. The National Turkey Federation played a key role in convincing consumers that eviscerated turkeys were safe to eat, and that they had been checked by government-licensed inspectors. Part of the “Eat More Turkey” campaign included the presentation of a turkey to the nation’s president by the National Federation before the holiday season each year. In 1956, J. Arza Adams from Pleasant Grove was president of the federation, and along with Ezra Taft Benson, who was then Secretary of Agriculture, he presented President Dwight D. Eisenhower with a turkey that year. The rapid growth of the industry in Utah after WWII was due to the leadership of a few individuals, among them William A. Barlocker. He developed a thriving turkey business during the 1950s in St. George and Enterprise, one of the largest in the nation at the time.47 On two occasions he won the National Turkey Federation’s prize for raising the largest turkey in the country; his 1961 winner weighed over fifty-eight pounds. In addition to his turkey enterprise, Barlocker was actively involved in Utah 45

Antrei, The Other Forty-Niners, 303. Carroll Draper, “New Shapes for Turkey” Utah Science 33 (1972): 101–102. 47 W. Paul Reeve, A Century of Enterprise: The History of Enterprise, Utah 1896–1996 (Enterprise, UT: City of Enterprise, 1996), 182–84. 46

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politics. Yet his career also illustrated the risks Members of the Utah turkey involved in the turkey business: he lost an industry present President average of a half million dollars each year Dwight D. Eisenhower with a from 1961 to 1965 and was forced to liqui- turkey, as part of an “Eat More date many of his assets, including his turkey Turkey” campaign, 1956. businesses. Developments in technology and advertising, as well as the leadership of growers’ associations and a few key individuals, further contributed to the advancement of Utah’s turkey industry after World War II. Governmentsupported research was also important. The development of turkey production in Sanpete County prompted the USAC, in 1956, to open a facility in Ephraim known as the Snow Field Station, which emphasized research on turkeys. The station was supported, in part, by funds collected from Utah turkey growers, and in 2000, it changed its name to the Turkey Research Facility. For forty years several scientists worked there on a variety of problems including turkey diseases, nutritional problems, using pelletized newspaper for bedding, manure management, dust control, use of solar energy, and housing and shelter issues.48 In the late 1960s and 1970s, several major changes occurred in Utah’s 48

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turkey industry. Beginning in the late 1960s, the Broad Breasted White turkey began to replace the bronze variety, and by 2013 most domesticated turkeys in Utah were white. Three factors led to this change. The white turkey dressed out more cleanly than did bronze turkeys, and they were less prone to a form of arthritis that afflicted the bronze variety. Also, when packaged for sale the white birds had a flatter and broader breast than earlier varieties. Raising turkeys completely in confinement and throughout the year were two other major changes in the industry beginning in the 1970s. Earlier, most turkey poults were first raised in coops, later transferred to more open confinement facilities, and when about a third grown turned loose in fields with rudimentary shelters from the sun and storms. Growers moved to complete confinement primarily for the sake of bio-security, or disease control. Various wild animals and birds carry diseases to which turkeys are susceptible, such as cholera. Two additional factors drove the change to year-round production. Continuous production allowed hiring permanent, instead of hard-to-find temporary, workers in processing plants. It also resulted in more efficient use of investments in processing plants, feed mills, and other associated facilities, than was the case when turkeys were grown mostly for the holiday markets. Two other major changes occurred in the industry after the 1970s. Earlier, turkey producers had required as many as six months to ready their birds for market and they used as many as six pounds of feed to produce each pound of turkey. Thanks in part to the quicker maturation time of white turkeys, by 2013 growers typically marketed their birds when they were only four months old and produced a pound of turkey with just three pounds of feed. Perhaps the most dramatic change, however, was the geographic concentration of the industry. By 1970, the industry had begun to contract geographically and was increasingly concentrated around six remaining processing plants. These included Ogden Poultry; the American Holding Company in St. George; Turkey Growers Incorporated, which included growers from Richfield and Spanish Fork; Moroni Feed Cooperative; the Morgan Brothers, in Davis County, which used a Salt Lake plant; and independent growers in Box Elder County who processed some of their birds in Twin Falls, Idaho.49 Six hatcheries in the state, all using supplemental oxygen, provided some of the poults, and those growers who produced turkey eggs in the state used artificial insemination to enhance egg fertility. During the 1970s, the total number of turkeys increased to about four million birds, a level that was maintained with ups-and-downs over the next four decades, until 2012, when the number increased to about five million birds.50 49

Hayes, “Geographic Analysis,� 25. In 1994, the U.S. Department of Agriculture stopped collecting and publishing information on the number of turkeys raised in Utah. The post-1994 numbers in the text are my estimates. 50

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Over time, the turkey industry increasingly The Board of Directors of the centered on Sanpete County. Population Washington County Turkey growth provides one explanation for this Growers Association, inspecting trend. Many of the areas along the Wasatch a flock. Front where turkeys had once roamed became housing developments and shopping centers. Land became too expensive for agricultural uses, and growing turkeys close to dwellings caused environmental problems, especially dust. Land in Sanpete Country was less expensive and environmental issues were less problematic there, especially after turkeys were raised in confinement. By 2013, only two processing plants for turkeys remained in the state. Forty-five turkey producers—all with large flocks, all members of the Moroni Feed Cooperative, and most of them located in Sanpete County— used a plant in Moroni. The other was the Wight’s Farm Fresh Turkey Business near Ogden, which processed a few thousand turkeys each year, mostly for the natural foods market. Similarly, the number of hatcheries in Utah that handled turkey eggs declined; the last turkey hatchery, located in Moroni, ceased operating in 2008. Thereafter the Moroni Feed Company imported all of its poults from the Midwest in semi-trucks that carried as many as fifty thousand poults each. In 2011 Utah’s domesticated turkeys make up only about two percent of all turkeys in the U.S. Moreover, only a tiny fraction of Utah farmers raise turkeys commercially, and they contributed only four percent of the value of all farm products in the state in 2011.51 The turkey industry in Utah is 51 Utah Department of Agriculture and Food, 2012 Utah Agriculture Statistics and Utah Department of Agriculture and Food Annual Report (Salt Lake City: Utah Department of Agriculture and Food, 2012), 37.

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interesting, not because of its size or even because it provides centerpieces for Thanksgiving dinners in Utah, but rather because it exists. We all appreciate the good cooks and recipes that result in a fantastic holiday meal, but we should likewise acknowledge the craftsmen who grew the showpieces for those meals and the “ingredients” they used to create the turkey industry in Utah. Before white settlers came, the Great Basin lacked a tolerable habitat for wild turkeys. The only advantage the area had for turkeys was an abundant supply of grasshoppers, crickets, and other insects. Utah’s mountains and deserts were more suited for sheep, cattle, jackrabbits, and rattlesnakes. The fact that Utah turkey growers had to import most of their feed from out of state and then pay to have many of their products hauled out to distant urban centers, put Utah growers at an economic disadvantage. As a result, the state is a challenging place to raise turkeys. How the individuals who were involved in the turkey industry surmounted these obstacles and ended up raising four to five million turkeys each year is the intriguing part of the story. Four ingredients contributed to this success. The first was a handful of creative individuals who formed and led several organizations that supported the turkey industry. The formation of Utah Poultry, Norbest, Moroni Feed Company and the Utah Turkey Growers Association occurred largely through the efforts of men by the names of Brown, Edmonds, Byers, Blackham, Barlocker, and Adams, as well as a few others. The second critical ingredient was the persistent farmers who survived the ups-and-downs in the turkey business and mastered the art of raising these persnickety birds. The few dozen Utah farmers who remained in the turkey business in 2013 were survivors. Along the way, numerous other farmers failed to master the skills that were necessary to raise turkeys successfully in the state. Several state and federal agencies constituted a third ingredient in the industry’s success. Research by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the USAC, and others led to the control of turkey diseases, improved nutrition, and the development of new varieties of turkeys. Federal extension agents disseminated useful information to growers and promoted the formation of essential farmers’ cooperatives. Especially after WWII, the Farm Credit System became a vital ingredient in enabling turkey growers and their cooperatives to boost the size of their operations. The National Turkey Federation also deserves credit for leading the successful campaign to expand the market for turkey products beyond just the holiday season. Especially early on, the Utah Farm Bureau played a key role in nurturing the turkey business in Utah. The final ingredient for success, and perhaps the most important, was the ability and willingness of some nimble Utah farmers to adopt cost-saving, profit-enhancing technologies. Those turkey growers who persisted had to adapt more quickly than growers in other states did. This included using new technologies that lessened turkey mortality, enhanced the efficiency of

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feed, and reduced labor requirements; employing their capital investments more efficiently; and decreasing their average costs by expanding their flock sizes. Turkey growers in Utah survived because they ran faster than did their competitors in other states. Only time will tell if they are able to keep up the pace.

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Alma Richards’s Olympic Leap of Faith Revisited By LARRY R. GERLACH

L. TOM PERRY SPECIAL COLLECTIONS

I

t is doubtful that Alma Richards or any other 1912 Olympian appreciated the historic significance of the Stockholm Games. The moder n Olympics had begun only sixteen years before in Athens, Greece, and the subsequent three games—Paris 1900, St. Louis 1904, and London 1908—had been plagued by poor participation, organizational problems, and competitive controversies. Stockholm was the first to exhibit the attendance, facilities, and administrative efficiency envisioned for the Olympics, as well as numerous “firsts” that heralded the future success of the Games.1 The V Olympiad also witnessed the finest athletic performances to that point. One of the most remarkable performances came from Alma Richards of Parowan, Utah,

Alma Richards at the high jump competition in Stockholm, July 1912. Here, he displays the determination that would produce the gold medal. He is wearing the official USA team uniform; note the optional leggings.

Larry R. Gerlach is professor emeritus of history at the University of Utah. His recently completed biography of Alma Richards combines his interest in Olympic and Utah history. 1 See Erik Bergvall, ed., The Fifth Olympiad: The Official Report of the Olympic Games of Stockholm 1912 (Stockholm: Swedish Olympic Committee, 1912); James E. Sullivan, ed., The Olympic Games: Stockholm 1912 (New York: American Sports Publishing, 1912); Horst Ueberhorst, “Stockholm 1912,” in John E. Findling and Kimberly D. Pelle, eds., Historical Dictionary of the Modern Olympic Movement (Westport, CT: Greenwood, 1996), 41–46; “The Olympic Games,” The Outlook, July 27, 1912, 655–56; Will T. Irwin, “The Olympic Games,” Colliers, August 10, 1912, 8–10, 26.

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who set an Olympic record when he won the gold medal in the high jump. Richards’s epic story has been described as “equal parts Rocky, The Natural, and Chariots of Fire.”2 The description is apt: with a stunning upset in the high jump, the unheralded Richards became the first Utahn ever to win an Olympic gold medal and the only native of the Beehive State to do so in the twentieth century. During the next twenty years he was recognized as the most accomplished all-around track and field athlete of his generation, earning national championships and records in five different events. One of the finest athletes in Utah history, his national and local honorific awards included election as a charter member of the Utah Sports Hall of Fame and to the Brigham Young University Hall of Fame; additionally, the Parowan High School athletic stadium bears his name. But throughout his life, the surprising Olympic triumph fundamentally defined his public and personal persona. Richards’s gold medal leap in Stockholm was one of those rare instances in sports when mind and muscle so meshed as to produce an extraordinary physical feat. Or was it? Alma Wilford Richards was born on February 20, 1890, in rural Parowan, Utah, into a devout Mormon family of pioneer ancestry.3 His father, Morgan Richards Jr., managed the town Cooperative Mercantile and held several civil and ecclesiastical offices, among them selectman, superintendent of schools, and bishop of the Parowan First Ward of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The ninth of ten children, Alma was in a sense the chosen one, the only child given a name of religious significance: “Alma” for the Nephite prophet whose founding of the Church of Jesus Christ in the ancient Americas is in the Book of Mormon and “Wilford” in honor of the modern prophet, Wilford Woodruff, who had married Alma’s parents in 1870 and who was then serving as the fourth president of the LDS church. As was common for boys in rural communities, “Pat,” as he was familiarly known, left school after the eighth grade in 1904 to become a “cowboy.” Then Richards met Thomas C. Trueblood, a professor of elocution and oratory at the University of Michigan, during a snowstorm in December 1908. The chance meeting inspired the nineteen-year-old Richards to pursue a high school education, and so, in January 1909, he enrolled at the Murdock Academy near Beaver, Utah. The strapping freshman was considerably older and physically more mature than the other students, and he immediately caught the eye of coaches, who convinced him to go out for track. Despite a lack of familiarity with the sport and a lack of training— 2

Lee Benson, “Alma,” BYU Magazine, August 1996, 38. See Andrew Jenson, Latter-day Saint Biographical Encyclopedia: A Compilation of Biographical Sketches of Prominent Men and Women in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Salt Lake City: Andrew Jenson History Company, 1901), 3:499–500; Luella Adams Dalton, comp., History of Iron County Mission and Parowan, the Mother Town (n.p, 1973), passim. 3

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there was no high school in Parowan—he On July 12, 1912, two days before proved to be a natural athlete. the U.S. Olympic team sailed for With a physique ill-suited for sprints or Sweden, the track and field distance running, Richards concentrated on athletes participated in a field events, not as a specialist but as a partici- fundraising exhibition at Hilltop pant in multiple contests. In 1910 he led tiny Park. Richards (fifth from the left) Murdock to the state championship, scoring was one of the athletes who half the team’s points and being named the assembled along the center field meet’s outstanding performer after setting state records in the high jump and shot put fence for a group photograph. while finishing second in the broad jump and He wore the Illinois Athletic Club pole vault. He then transferred to Brigham uniform in which he had competed Young High School in Provo, where, thanks in the Evanston team trials. to the lack of standard eligibility rules, he was for the next two years the star performer on the university’s varsity team. There, Richards displayed a remarkable versatility and competed in all the field events—the high jump, shot put, broad jump, pole vault, and discus. On May 31, 1912, only three years after being introduced to the sport of high jump, Richards boarded a train for his first trip out of the Beehive State. He was headed to Evanston, Illinois, to participate in the central regional trials for a place on the U.S. Olympic team. He had intended to compete in the broad jump and high jump during the trials, but decided to focus on the high jump. During the pre-meet training, it quickly became evident that Richards possessed not only exceptional physical ability, but also supreme confidence, despite his inexperience in top-flight competition.

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One of the coaches, Boyd Comstock, recalled how Richards arrogantly dismissed his competitors in the trials—“None of them are any good”— and vowed to win “here first and then [at] the Olympics.”4 On June 8, Alma Richards made good on his first boast, winning the high jump with a leap of 6-feet 3-inches, the highest he had ever jumped. Thinking the surprising victory by a virtually unknown competitor was a fluke, the meet director, Everett C. Brown of the Chicago Athletic Club, tried unsuccessfully to replace the newcomer on the team with a collegiate champion, Earl Palmer of Dartmouth College.5 But the next day, Richards boarded a train headed for New York City, there to join the other members of the U.S. Olympic team. How the objections to Richards’s place on the team were resolved is uncertain, but it is clear that he joined the squad as a regular member, not as a supplemental choice, as has been suggested. On June 14, with his newly issued first passport in hand, Pat from Parowan boarded the SS Finland and embarked on a life-changing experience. Richards was proud of his accomplishment and thrilled by the oceanic voyage, but his teammates did not take him “seriously on the trip to Sweden.” His demeanor led some of them to call him a “boob,” “rube,” and “chump” behind his back. Others found him “quite gullible” and played good-natured practical “country boob jokes” on him. He tended to keep to himself, prompting James Sullivan, secretary of the American Olympic Committee, to comment, “Well, Richards, I would not have known you were on the boat if I had not heard some of the fellows talking about you. You seem to be the quietest man with the bunch.” While not given to social interaction with teammates, Richards was confident, even boastful, about his ability. He told Wesley Oler, a fellow high jumper from Yale University, “I do know that I’ll win the high jump.”6 In truth, he later recalled that at the beginning of the voyage to Stockholm, it “looked to me as if I was taking a 12,000 mile trip just for the pleasure of sightseeing and gaining a few points that I wish to use in the future as a coach.”7 Indeed, observers gave Richards little chance of winning a medal in Stockholm, despite his win at the central trials. He knew that Mike Murphy, the head American trainer and a track coach at the University of Pennsylvania, and his teammates “thought that I was a good second rater” and “expected some of the other fellows to make a better showing.” They downgraded Richards’s potential less because of his inexperience in 4 Deseret Evening News, May 31, 1912; Salt Lake Tribune, June 1, 1912; Boyd Comstock, “The Man from Utah,” Sporting Life, April 1923, 19, 35, 38. Comstock was in town with three athletes from Citrus Union High School in Azusa, California, to participate in a national preparation meet. 5 Provo Post, June 11, 1912; Salt Lake Herald-Republican, August 20, 1912; Deseret Evening News, August 24, 1912; Alma Richards, Personal Statement, October 14, 1954, box 1, fd. 14, Alma Richards Papers, 1919–1972 , L. Tom Perry Special Collections, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah (hereafter Richards Papers). 6 New York Evening Mail, February 3, 1914. 7 Salt Lake Herald-Republican, August 20, 25, 1912.

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top-flight competition and more because of his physical stature and technique. As Murphy observed, Richards’s “huge frame”—six-feet, twoinches tall and 210 pounds—made high jumping the event for which he was “the least fitted naturally.”8 And instead of the customary scissors technique, Richards used an utterly unorthodox style: he approached the bar straight-on, like a broad jumper, leaped with his body erect, and tucked his knees against his chest to clear the bar. The coaches agreed that he was “about as awkward looking an athlete as [was] ever seen.”9 The qualifying round of the 1912 Olympic high jump competition took place on July 7.The nine-man American contingent included the world-record holder, George Horine of Stanford University, and Carlisle’s Jim Thorpe, who would win both the decathlon and pentathlon; the team was heavily favored to win all three medals. At the end of the first round, six Americans ranked among the eleven finalists—including the “Mormon giant.”10 In the final round on July 8, one month to the day since the Olympic trials in Evanston, the contenders steadily dropped out. When Horine, the pre-meet favorite, failed at a 1.89 meters jump, two long-shots—Hans Liesche, the German champion, and Alma Richards—unexpectedly found themselves competing for the gold medal. Liesche looked the winner as he had sailed over the first twelve heights “with wonderful litheness” on the first attempt, then cleared both the 1.89 and 1.91 meter marks with “the greatest confidence” on his second jump. Richards, who admitted he “had much difficulty that day,” needed all three tries to surpass the 1.83, 1.87, and 1.89 bars. He again failed twice at 1.91, but on his third and final attempt, when “everybody looked for a win for Germany,” he “lifted his heavy body with enormous power across the bar.”11 The bar was now raised to the Olympic-record height of 1.93 meters, or six feet and four inches. Richards wanted Liesche to jump first, but the German deferred, as was his right for having had fewer misses. In contrast to his earlier struggles, Richards surprised everyone by sprinting without hesitation to the pit and clearing the bar “with a couple of inches to spare.”12 Liesche now appeared unnerved, whether by the effortlessness of Richards’s exceptional leap or by 8 Provo Post, August 25, 1913; Salt Lake Herald-Republican, August 18, 20, 25, 1912; Salt Lake Tribune, August 20, 1912. 9 New York Times, June 13, 1912; New York Evening Mail, June 13, 1912; New York World, June 13, 1912; New York Herald, June 13, 1912; Iron County Record (Cedar City, UT), July 5, 1912; Salt Lake HeraldRepublican, August 20, 1912. 10 Edward Lyell Fox, “Our Olympic Flyers,” Outing Magazine, July 1912, 387–89; Richard Hymans, “The History of the United States Olympic Trials—Track and Field,” USA Track and Field, accessed December 9, 2013, http://www.usatf.org/statistics/champions/OlympicTrials/HistoryOfTheOlympicTrials.pdf, 47; New York Times, April 30, 1912; Milwaukee Sentinel, August 11, 1912; Richards, Personal Statement, Richards Papers; Salt Lake Tribune, July 9, 1912. Due to the lingering effects of pink eye, when he was not jumping, Richards wore a ragged old hat to shade his eyes. 11 Bergvall, Fifth Olympiad, 393–94. 12 Ibid.; David Wallechinsky, comp.,The Complete Book of the Summer Olympics: Athens 2004 Edition (Wilmington, DE: Sport Media Publishing, 2004), 343; Arthur E. Grix, “The Olympic-days in Stockholm,” box 1, fd. 12, Richards Papers.

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his unsportsmanlike effort at “getting his goat” by walking back and forth several times in front of the pit between the posts. Although the bar was set only three-quarters of an inch above a height Liesche had cleared easily, he failed twice to match the Olympic record. Then, as he began the run-up to his third and final attempt, he was inter rupted three times—by a starter’s gun for the 800-meter final, by a band that started to play unexpectedly, and a by Swedish official who pointedly urged Liesche to “hurry up.” Utterly frustrated, his concentration gone, Hans Leische missed badly on his last jump. 13 With another stunning Richards, jumping at a spring upset, the unheralded, unorthodox, but 1911 track meet at Brigham supremely confident countr y lad, who Young University. This image previously had “but a vague idea of the features his good-luck hat and, importance of such an event,” became the most notably, the markedly premier high jumper in the world.14 unorthodox jumping style that Richards received a hero’s welcome upon would amaze coaches and returning to Utah and went on to forge a commentators throughout his career unlike anything he had imagined as a career. boy in Parowan. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Cornell University, received a law degree from the University of Southern California, and taught science in Los Angeles high schools from 1922 to 1953. For twenty years after the Olympics, Richards competed in championship track and field competitions. He set national records in the indoor and outdoor high jump, broad jump, and decathlon; won a national title in shot put; and won regional championships in the high jump, broad jump and fifty-six-pound 13 Sullivan, Olympic Games: Stockholm, 392–93; Bergvall, Stockholm 1912: Official Report, 393–394; David Wallechinsky, comp., The Complete Book of the Summer Olympics: Athens 2004 Edition (Wilmington, Delaware: Sport Media Publishing, 2004), 343; Grix, “The Olympic-days in Stockholm,” Richards Papers. 14 Provo Herald and Salt Lake Tribune, August 20, 1912; Salt Lake Herald-Republican, August 20 and 25, 1912.

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weight events. After retiring from competition in 1932, the Beehive State’s greatest athlete slowly slipped into historical oblivion, known only as the name of an Olympic champion to a few sports enthusiasts. And then, Richards’s achievements were resurrected, largely because of the purported circumstances of his dramatic gold medal leap. Shortly after Richards’s death in May 1963, Hack Miller, the sports editor of the LDS-owned and operated Deseret News, received an article that a Milwaukee, Wisconsin, newspaper had presumably published. The article came to Miller from James Alva Banks of Manti, Utah, who was then serving an LDS proselytizing mission in Milwaukee.The article appeared in the Deseret News on May 18, as follows: The moment of the supreme test had come. The Americans who had failed were cheering and encouraging Richards. He took off his cap, walked back 200 feet and suddenly dropped to his knees. A murmur of surprise, followed by a reverent hush, came to the great crowd. Kneeling there, hands clasped before all that great crowd, Richards was praying. In a moment he arose, his face alight, and with a quick run, he raced down the pathway, leaped, cleared by an inch and in spite of the prejudices, the crowd roared with applause. A few moments later Litsche [sic] had failed and Richards was champion.15

Initially not much was made of Richards’s reported prayer, even in LDS circles. T. Earl Pardoe, a BYU drama professor tur ned Alumni Association–historian, included Richards in his compilations of famous BYU personalities and LDS athletes without mentioning prayer. William Black’s Mormon Athletes simply excerpted the Deseret News article without comment. And a Brigham Young University graduate student’s theatrical script about Mormons who achieved excellence in a variety of endeavors discussed Richards, but without reference to prayer.16 But as interest in the Olympics increased with Salt Lake City’s efforts to host the Winter Games, sport and religion merged in Utah in the 1980s and 1990s. In the midst of these efforts, two Salt Lake City sports writers published a compendium about LDS athletes intended for LDS readers, Trials and Triumphs: Mormons in the Olympic Games.17 Lee Benson and Doug Robinson made Alma Richards the subject of their lead chapter, and several Deseret News and BYU alumni magazine articles subsequently retold and embellished his story.18 His celebrity grew, in part, because Salt Lake City’s 15

Deseret News, May 18, 1963. T. Earl Pardoe, The Sons of Brigham (Salt Lake City: Deseret News Press, 1969), 449–52; William T. Black, Mormon Athletes (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1980), 6–10; Kris Marele Morgan, “Mormon Montage: Mormons in the World: A Production Script” (master’s thesis, Brigham Young University, 1979), 92–93. Morgan presents Richards as a hayseed, having him speak with “a Utah drawl” and saying “Ahh, shucks” when General John J. Pershing compliments him. 17 Lee Benson and Doug Robinson, Trials and Triumphs: Mormons in the Olympic Games (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Company, 1992), 1–19. 18 See Lee Benson, “He Came, He Saw and He Went Home With Gold,” Deseret News, July 22, 1992, and “Alma,” BYU Magazine, 38–43, as well as derivative pieces by Twila Van Leer, “Utah Native Leaped to Fame in 1912 Summer Games,” Deseret News, March 25, 1995, reprinted January 14, 1996; see also “Alma Richards Was Utah’s First Olympic Gold Medalist,” Utah History Blazer, February 1995; Gib Twyman, “Route to Honor Utah Golden Boy,” Deseret News, June 20, 2001; Pardoe, Sons of Brigham, 449–52; Black, 16

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Olympics quest coincided with the LDS church’s initiative to project more Christian and “mainstream” images—an effort aided by include Parowan on the initial Olympic torch relay route through the national visibility of Brigham Young Utah. Widespread protest ensued, University’s athletic programs, notably football, and the prominence of professional LDS and on February 5, 2002, a brief athletes such as Steve Young, Danny Ainge, ceremony to celebrate the state’s Johnny Miller, and Dale Murphy.19 The story first Olympic champion took of Richards’s medal-winning prayer meshed place in front of Richards’s neatly with America’s obsession with sport boyhood home. and with the church’s public relations efforts. Consequently, LDS officials, strong supporters of Salt Lake City’s bid, embraced Richards and his story of faith and piety in order to establish a faith-promoting Mormon Olympic identity. David Lunt has admirably described how the LDS church packaged an Olympic trinity—Richards, the double-gold-medal gymnast Peter Vidmar (1984), and the steeplechaser Henry Marsh (1976, 1984, and 1988)— as exemplars of Mormonism. These Olympians offered an inspirational message of faith and piety for Latter-day Saints—and for those outside the religion—by personifying how traditional LDS beliefs, teachings, and The Salt Lake Organizing

Committee inexplicably failed to

Mormon Athletes, 6–10. Wallenchinsky, Athens 2004 Edition, 343, is the only Olympics history or reference book that has carried the story; it adds, “He closed his eyes and bowed his head, and made a deal with God.” 19 Larry R. Gerlach, “Sporting Saints: Reshaping Mormon Identities,” in Bettina Kratzmuller, Mattias Marschik, Rudolf Müller, Hubert Szemethy, and Elisabeth Trinkel, eds., Sport and the Construction of Identities (Vienna, Austria:Verlag, Turia, and Kant, 2007), 453–61.

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practices led to success in sport and, presumably, in other endeavors.20 Church leaders had long praised Mormon athletes for faithfully illustrating the power of adherence to the Word of Wisdom (the LDS health code), but Alma added an important dimension to the affirmation of belief.21 Vidmar and Marsh bore their personal witnesses before church groups, but the retelling of Richards’s story was more compelling because it represented an overt, public expression of religiosity by “a devout believer who prayed for God’s help—and received it.”22 Richards had previously been known as a champion track athlete whose religious significance came in his observation of the church’s dietary proscriptions; he now had become a venerated LDS role model and highly publicized Olympic icon. Several years prior to the 2002 Winter Games, his image had appeared on billboards throughout the Salt Lake Valley, and on February 4, 2002, the torch relay (after an embarrassing oversight that necessitated rerouting) passed through his home town.23 More conspicuously for Mormons, he was the principal Olympian depicted in the LDS church’s cultural contribution to the 2002 Olympics, Light of the World: A Celebration of Life, a drama, dance, and music extravaganza that performed for sold-out audiences in the 21,000-seat LDS Conference Center during the Games in February 2002. Light of the World used Richards’s life story, with liberties, to illustrate Mormon pioneer history, the Olympics, and notions of universal brotherhood through the production’s main theme: the “light of Christ” had inspired courage and achievement and had enabled the boy from Parowan to find his way. In the final scene, Richards, who has drifted from his Mormon heritage, kneels below a projected photograph of his gold-medal leap and prays to God for support. The narrator explains the message: “The light in Alma Richards and in all of us is not the light of victory alone. It is the light by which we find our path and follow it to the end.”24 Richard Kimball has succinctly summarized the larger issue that, “Whether it was 1912 or 2002, recreation and athletics remained viable ways for the church to inculcate values and model proper social behavior.”25 And, one might

20 David J. Lunt, “Mormons and the Olympics: Constructing an Olympic Identity,” Olympika 16 (2007): 1–18. 21 Harrison R. Merrill, “Utah Athletes Coming to Their Own,” Improvement Era, August 1928, 824. For the use of athletes in teaching the Word of Wisdom to young Latter-day Saints, see Richard Ian Kimball, Sports in Zion: Mormon Recreation, 1890 –1940 (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2003),107–24. 22 Lunt, “Mormons and the Olympics,” 2–3. 23 Parowan was inexplicably left off the original route, but was added following substantial public protest and press criticism. Deseret News, January 12, 23, March 7, June 20, 25–28, 2001. 24 See David G. Pace, “Endowing the Olympic Masses: Light of the World,” Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought 36, no. 1 (Spring 2003): 151–55; Church News (Salt Lake City), February 9, 2002; Salt Lake Tribune, February 3, 7, 2002. For video of Light of the World and other LDS cultural activities related to the Olympics, see Friends to All Nations: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the 2002 Winter Olympic Games (Salt Lake City: LDS Church Productions, 2003), DVD. 25 Kimball, Sports in Zion, 189.

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add, connect Mormons with the broader Christian community. Alma Richards had become a preeminent representative of Mormonism because of an event that may or may not have happened. Today it is commonplace for athletes to signify faith by making the Sign of the Cross, inscribing scripture references on eye shadow, kneeling prayerfully in end zones, or pointing heavenward after a notable achievement. But such overt religious expressions did not often occur in sport in predominately Christian America in 1912 and much less so in an international athletic arena such as the Olympics. The most infamous example of Olympics-related religiosity involved Forrest Smithson, a theology student from Oregon State University who in 1908 won the 110-meter hurdles in a world-record time. The Official Report of the London Games contains a picture of Smithson carrying a Bible in one hand during the race. It is bogus. The picture was staged to challenge the scheduling of any Olympic event on the Christian Sabbath. Smithson’s event occurred on a Saturday, not a Sunday, and no contemporary newspaper, observer, or official mentioned his dramatic protest of toting the Good Book while running. Further, another photograph of Smithson’s race shows him running emptyhanded.26 Smithson was a fake; Richards was not. It was perhaps inevitable in a religious culture given to premonition and discussion of God’s revealed favor that Richards’s extraordinary athletic achievement would become part of the folklore. Because his public display of religiosity seemed so remarkable, in the course of researching a biography of Richards, I sought more information about this compelling, inspirational, and most unusual supplication for God’s favor. Immediately, two questions required resolution. The first was provenance. A search of Milwaukee newspapers, the supposed source of the 1963 Deseret News article, yielded no results. Neither the Sentinel nor the Journal, the two major Milwaukee newspapers, published anything about Richards at the time of the Olympics in 1912 or his death in 1963. Then, while researching his intercollegiate career at Cornell, I found the likely “mother” article in the New York Evening Mail of February 3, 1914. It appeared under the byline “Francis,” the pen name of Frank Albertanti (who was also known as Max Francis), a flamboyant sports columnist who specialized in the coverage of prize fights. The germane portions of the article are as follows: After the bar had been cleared at 6 feet 3 inches, there remained only Richards and Litsche, the German, to compete for first honors. At this height Richards had knocked the bar down once. But he was not disheartened. On the next trial he cleared it. At 6 feet 3.98 inches Richards bowed his head and thought a moment. Litsche was looking him straight in the face. The country boy say [saw] 20,000 people staring in his direction. The announcer had told in advance of the great competition that was going on in 26 William O. Johnson Jr., All That Glitters Is Not Gold: The Olympic Games (New York: Putnam’s, 1972), 129; James Edward Sullivan, ed., Spalding’s Official Athletic Almanac for 1909 (New York: American Sports, 1909), 48.

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the high jumping pit. Horine, Grumpelt, Thorpe and Erickson, the Americans, who had failed at various heights seated themselves and gazed at Richards. He was America’s hope. Horine yelled words of encouragement to the “boob.” Suddenly Richards went to one side. All eyes were upon him. He threw off his cap and walked slowly 300 feet away from where his companions sat. He threw himself on his knees. With bowed head he crossed himself and his lips move[d]. He was praying. A minute elapsed and he was on his feet again. Tears came to Horine’s eyes. Gritting his teeth Richards straightened up like a new man, crouched and in a flash “sprinted” to where the posts stood, flung himself in the air, and, legs first sailed across the bar. Thunderous applause followed. Richards jumped to his feet, shook the dirt from his legs and walked leisurely back to the bench. It was now up to Litsche.27

Hack Miller apparently had assumed that the material Alma Banks sent him came from a Milwaukee newspaper, when in fact Banks had sent along a copy of Albertani’s article from the New York Evening Mail. Miller—as was his wont—excerpted substantially from the piece and rewrote portions of it. Further, Miller apparently did not know Les Goates, his predecessor, had previously obtained a copy of the Evening Mail article and published excerpts of it in the Deseret News.28 Second, I had to resolve the issue of accuracy. Albertani, who accompanied the American team to Stockholm, was seemingly an authoritative source.Yet serious questions exist about his story’s validity. Written eighteen months after the fact, the article contains numerous errors, fabrications, and manufactured verbatim conversations supposedly heard aboard the Finland and after Richards’s winning jump.29 Albertani’s most egregious mistake was his reference to a devout Mormon crossing himself in prayer. (Perhaps the sportswriter, a Catholic, deliberately used “crossing” in referring to another faith instead of “blessing himself,” the correct Catholic terminology.) It is also curious that though Albertani purportedly wrote the column in anticipation of Richards inaugurating the indoor track season in Boston on February 7, he apparently did not know that the Cornell athlete’s next 27

The article concluded with Richards reflecting on the prayer the next day: “‘You must have felt like a hero after you did that 6 feet 4 inches?’” a companion asked. “‘You betcher,’” was the answer. “‘But maybe I didn’t pray to do that. I never prayed so hard in my life. The bar was at 6 feet 4 inches. I had talked about it to almost everyone that I expected to clear it at that height. I felt that I owed a debt. I was determined to clear the bar to clear myself. When I saw the stick at 6 feet 4 inches I thought for a minute that my confidence would fade away. If I was on my sick bed I wouldn’t have prayed any harder than to make that 6-foot 4-inch jump.” These effusive assertions of prayer are absolutely inconsistent with Richards’s subsequent silence on the matter. Further, the article contains a basic contradiction (Richards purportedly says he that “didn’t pray,” and then, in the next sentence, says he had “never prayed so hard”) and an impossible claim (Richards could not have boasted about clearing the six feet, four inches mark because he had no way of knowing the bar would ever reach that height). The conversation seems invented. 28 Deseret News, April 2, 1947, July 30, 1953. 29 For example, Albertani incorrectly wrote that Richards was in Parowan when the Olympic selection committee sent a written invitation to him to come to New York as a member of the team; that Amatuer Athletic Union officials in Utah had recommended him to Sullivan; and that, when in Stockholm, Richards had left his chickens and geese “to mother’s care,” although he had not lived in Parowan for three years. Albertani tried to paint Richards as an unschooled hick by having him say “you betcher”; and the sportswriter consistently misspelled Liesche as Litsche. Finally, Richards had missed twice, not once, at the six-feet, three-inches mark; he did not wear his hat in the final round; and he did not “walk leisurely back to the bench” after his record-setting jump, but instead paced back and forth for a time in front of the pit.

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scheduled competition would take place in New York City’s Madison Square Garden four days later. new Olympiastadion for the Factual errors and journalistic license aside, ceremonial beginning of the 1912 the major problem with the article is its Olympics. Opening ceremonies singularity. Such a conspicuous public expreswere not yet major media and sion of devotion would have been a remarkable spectator events; only 13,653 occur rence, but not one contemporar y witnessed King Gustav V declare American or European newspaper (including the opening of what would be the Evening Mail), U.S. teammate or official, the largest and most successful or any other Olympic participant alluded to Games to date. Richards’s alleged act of praying on bended knee. George Horine, who supposedly teared up while cheering for Richards, never mentioned the incident in his reports from Stockholm for the San Francisco Call. In his detailed account of the high jump event, James Sullivan wrote of Richard’s winning leap, “We all thought he would take a great deal of time and care, making the usual measurements carefully. To our surprise, he disdained all preparations, skipped up to the bar with an easy run, and hopped over it with a full two inches to spare.”30 An analysis of the Evening Mail account of Richards’s inspired leap raises five fundamental questions. Why would Albertani write about Richards’s public prayer if it did not happen? Did the journalist craft a stirring, On July 6, a parade of 2,047

athletes entered Stockholm’s

30 George Horine, San Francisco Call, July 18, 26, 1912; James Sullivan, “What Happened at Stockholm,” Outing Magazine 61 (October 1912–March 1913): 30.

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human-interest tale of Olympian religiosity to attract readership? Why did an account from an on-the-scene reporter contain so many errors? If Richards did kneel openly in prayer, why did no other reporter or competitor—or anyone else, for that matter—discuss it? And, most significantly, why did Richards himself make no mention of prayer? The day after winning the gold medal, Richards telegraphed the man responsible for launching his athletic career and his Olympic ambitions, the BYU track coach Eugene Roberts. He did not refer to prayer in his description of the winning jump: The time has at last gone by that I have longed for and I gave them all I had. It was sure a very lucky contest for me as my eyes were very bad and it was hard for me to see the bar. My jump was 6 feet 3.94 inches. I did it the first trial without touching the bar. I did not try any higher height. There were 59 jumpers here but only eleven got over [the] 6-foot mark. The others were great jumpers but my luck was better.31

A more revealing fact was that, upon returning to Provo, the LDS athlete who had attended and competed for BYU—his church-owned institution —failed to include an act of religious piety and devotion when explaining his gold-medal jump to a welcoming and overwhelmingly Mormon audience. Richards said only that when the bar was placed at six feet, four inches, he “experienced a momentary feeling of discouragement and doubt and felt the shadow of a chill down his spine.” Then, he continued, “I thought of the B.Y.U., Utah and my friends there, and the old United States and made the spurt—and chill and all went over the bar in the first attempt.” 32 Richards’s BYU high school yearbook provided a similar description of his leap: “The honor of his country, his state, and his Alma Mater were in his custody and visions of this responsibility for a moment numbed him. Then, after warming up slightly, he summoned his powers, and reinforcing them with a liberal portion of that old, determined, B.Y.U. spirit, he jumped.” 33 He repeated the account several times, and in interviews with Utah newspapers, including the Deseret News, never mentioned prayer. He simply stated, “As it happened the good jumpers did not do as well as they had formerly and through some power new to me I was able to do better. I squeezed out the winner.”34 Richards surely knew about the story of his Olympic prayer while he attended Cornell. The Ithaca Daily News reprinted Albertani’s article about the school’s famous track star on February 4, 1914, but neither Richards nor the school publications made any reference to it. During the next twenty years of Richards’s collegiate and amateur track competition, his contemporaries, as well as the sports reporters who covered his lengthy career did not mention a Stockholm prayer. Neither did the dear friend 31

Alma Richards to E. L. Roberts, July 9, 1912, printed in the Provo Herald, July 26, 1912. Deseret Evening News, August 24, 1912. 33 BYUtah 1913 (Provo, UT: Brigham Young University Student Body, 1913), 186. 34 Salt Lake Herald-Republican, August 20, 25, 1912. 32

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who delivered his funeral eulogy or the LDS elders who conducted his memorial services in California and in Utah.35 This is not surprising. After all, neither Richards nor the press had mentioned the prayer in 1912. And while he remained true to the faith of his fathers throughout his adult life, with the passage of time, his religiosity probably became more a matter of personal conviction than institutionalized practice. Baptized as was customary at age eight, Richards did not serve a proselytizing church mission or receive temple endowments—two important commitments of faith in an LDS life. His church attendance waned and likely ceased for a time, as his first two wives, Marion Gardner and Anita Gertrude Huntimer, were not LDS; further, he did not raise any of his four children as Mormons. His third wife, Lenore Griffin, whom he married in 1948, was an active Latter-day Saint, but their marriage was not solemnized in an LDS temple. Whatever the extent of his religious practice, Richards earnestly embraced his Mormon heritage. Although he lived in Los Angeles from 1922 until his death in 1963, he remained a Parowan boy at heart. He subscribed to the Parowan Times, returned frequently to Utah to visit family and friends, contributed to church-sponsored charitable activities, and enthusiastically supported the preservation of the pioneer-era Old Rock Church, where, he wrote, “many of us were taught that it was wrong to steal, lie, smoke and drink and these teachings have been followed by many who otherwise would not have been so true.”36 Then, thirty years after the fact, came Richards’s first intimation of an Olympic prayer. The Improvement Era, the official LDS news magazine for various church organizations, printed excerpts from “letters recently received” from Richards in a November 1942 piece entitled “Alma Richards—His Record and Testimony.” After briefly summarizing his athletic career, the Era quoted Richards as having said, “I told the Lord . . . that if He would help me to win the high jumps in the Olympic Games at Stockholm, I would do my best to be a good boy and set a good example.” Whether this entreaty occurred before Stockholm, sometime during the Games, or at the actual competition is unclear. However, the main point of the article was not Richards’s vague, imploring comments about prayer, but rather, his reiteration of his refusal to accept a thousand dollars from “a large tobacco concern” to endorse its products after he won the gold medal. “It was no temptation whatever,” he declared. “Many times I had needed money badly—yet not that much.”37 His firm rejection of the offer 35 Los Angeles Times, April 4–5, 1963; Iron County Record (Cedar City, UT), April 11, 1963; Long Beach Press Telegram, July 3, 1963; New York Times, April 5, 1963; James B. Miller, “Eulogy in Memory of Alma Wilford Richards,” box 1, fd. 10, Richards Papers. 36 Alma Richards to Jane W. Adams, printed in the Parowan Times, July 10, 1929. 37 Improvement Era, November 1942, 731. The Improvement Era published this piece in its section for LDS men eighteen years of age or older; thus Richards’s description of himself as “a boy” of twenty-two in 1912 was incongruous.

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in 1912 was well known and had earned him, like other outstanding Mormon athletes, praise for personifying the relationship between athletic success and adherence to the church’s dietary teachings at a time when the Word of Wisdom was evolving from preference to principle. A 1928 Improvement Era article, for instance, extolled Richards for his athletic achievements and noted that he had remarked, “I have never used regularly tea, coffee, tobacco, or liquor in any form. I still believe in the Word of Wisdom.”38 Accordingly, the Improvement Era featured Richards’s 1942 comments in its “No-Liquor-Tobacco Column.” The editor began the column by reminding the chairmen of local LDS committees of their charge to get at least one hundred Latter-day Saints to urge their U.S. senators and representatives to support a bill sponsored by Texas senator Morris Sheppard, the so-called father of Prohibition. Sheppard’s bill would have banned the sale, gift, or possession of alcoholic beverages where American military personnel lived, worked, or trained. Within this context, the Era column concluded by praising Richards not for offering a prayer during the Olympics, but rather for serving as an exemplary representative of Mormonism: “Alma Richards is a modest, thoroughly honest man who attributes his athletic successes and moral strength to parental teachings, keeping the Word of Wisdom, and prayer. He has always believed that liquor and tobacco are not good for man—a truth revealed to the Prophet Joseph Smith in 1833. Alma Richards has set an example of moral courage, fidelity to parental teachings, and faithfulness in keeping the commandment of the Lord, worthy of imitation by every boy in the Church.”39 Why did Richards mention his Olympic prayer for the first time thirty years after the Games? Could the emotional impact of a second divorce (one involving three preteen children) have prompted Richards to rededicate himself to his faith? In August 1942, he wrote a letter amounting to a testimony of beliefs to Joseph F. Merrill, a member of the Council of the Twelve, who in 1930 had authorized a church loan for Richards. Merrill, knowing the Olympic champion’s firm endorsement of the Word of Wisdom would inspire the faithful and bolster the church’s support of the Sheppard temperance bill, forwarded the letter to the Improvement Era for publication. Whatever the circumstances, Richards’s celebrity gave added importance to his affirmation of the LDS faith. The Deseret News understood as much, reprinting the column with the same title two months later.40 38 Harrison R. Merrill, “Utah Athletes Coming to Their Own,” Improvement Era, August 1928, 824. Asking a practicing Mormon to endorse tobacco may have indicated unfamiliarity with the Word of Wisdom, the LDS dietary code contained in Section 89 of the Doctrine and Covenants. On the other hand, the proscriptions regarding tobacco, food, and drink were not considered obligatory until 1921. See Thomas G. Alexander, “The Word of Wisdom: From Principle to Requirement,” Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought 14, no. 3 (1981): 78–88. 39 Improvement Era, November 1942, 731. 40 Joseph F. Merrill to Alma Richards, August 24, 1942, box 1, fd. 1, Richards Papers; Deseret News, January 16, 1943.

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Twelve years later, Richards renewed contact with his old Olympic rival, Hans Liesche, through the assistance of the German sportswriter Arthur E. Grix.41 Richards had been deeply troubled since 1912 with doubts about his Olympic victory, frequently saying that Liesche was “the best jumper in the world” and noting that repeated interruptions had upset the German as he attempted a final leap. In his first letter to Liesche in February 1954, Richards recalled the high jumping competition in detail, forthrightly declaring, “I have always felt that you should have won the 1912 High Jump” because “you were interrupted a great deal.” He subsequently repeated the statement, always citing the distractions Liesche endured, but without discussion of prayer.42 Nor did Richards mention prayer in an autobiographical statement he sent to Grix, who was preparing a magazine article on the reuniting of the two aging Olympians. If Richards had knelt openly in prayer during the competition—an act that would have been widely observed—why did he not mention it to Liesche, who surely would have known about it, or to Grix, who would have liked to have known about it for his article? But then, in October 1954, Alma wrote a statement assessing his life, in which he again referred to prayer in conjunction with the gold medal. He reiterated the comments he made after the Games and in the Improvement Era article, with slight embellishment and a major addition: “Many thoughts went very rapidly through my mind. I thought of Parowan—my folks—the B.Y.U.—Utah—my people—that I was representing our Country against a fine athlete from another country. I felt weak and as if the whole world was on my shoulders. As I walked back to make my jump, I said a prayer and asked God to give me strength and if it was right that I should win—that I would do my best to set a good example all the days of my life. The weight went off my shoulders and my confidence returned.”43 By writing that he had prayed privately while walking back to prepare to approach the bar, Richards effectively countered the idea that he had knelt in open supplication.44 Is it coincidence that Richards again mentioned prayer—this time with specific reference to the 1912 Olympics—in an introspective, private document he penned seven months after having resumed contact with Liesche? Did referring to prayer help alleviate his long-standing uneasiness, now heightened by correspondence with Leische, about a triumph that, 41 For an account of the Richards-Liesche correspondence, see Larry R. Gerlach, “An Olympic Friendship: Alma Richards and Hans Liesche,” in Janice Forsyth and Michael K. Heine, eds., Problems, Possibilities, Promising Practices: Critical Dialogues on the Olympic and Paralympic Games (London, Ontario: International Centre for Olympic Studies, 2012), 45–50. 42 Alma Richards to Hans Liesche, February 20, 1954, box 1, fd. 2, Richards Papers. See also Arthur Grix to Richards, February 5, 1954, and Richards to Grix, February 25, 1954, box 1, fd. 3 and 5, Richards Papers. 43 Richards, Personal Statement, Richards Papers. 44 Lunt, “Mormons and the Olympics,” 3, first raised this point.

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however exceptional, remained troubling because of extenuating circumstances? Could invoking prayer, in whatever form, justify a seemingly miraculous achievement that seemed inexplicable, save for divine intervention? It is uncertain how—or even whether—Alma Richards prayed before his victorious Olympic leap. No contemporary sources discussed a prayer; and, upon his return from Stockholm, Richards himself did not refer to prayer before overwhelmingly LDS audiences or in interviews with Provo and Salt Lake City newspapers that, given the religiosity of much of their readership, surely would have reported such a demonstration of faith. During the next thirty years of collegiate and amateur track competition, Richards was widely heralded as an Olympic champion, but none of his fellow competitors or newspaper reporters apparently knew of his purported prayer. The teacher who wrote a lengthy ode for Richards’s retirement, the friend who delivered his eulogy, and the Latter-day Saints who conducted his memorial services did not hint at the Olympic prayer. Richards himself did not bring up prayer in the Olympic-oriented autobiography he prepared for Arthur Grix or in his correspondence with Hans Liesche from 1954 to 1963. And no evidence exists that his widow—whose determined efforts to preserve Richards’s Olympic memory resulted in the transfer of his athletic awards from the Helms Athletic Foundation in Los Angeles to BYU—mentioned prayer in Stockholm. In short, the only direct evidence of an Olympic prayer are two brief, vague statements Richards made thirty and forty-two years after the fact. If Richards did pray before his final leap in Stockholm, certain conclusions seem evident. First, he apparently placed no particular significance on it at the time since he did not cite the effects of a prayer while explaining his achievement to fellow church members and to the press after returning from the Olympics. He may have felt prayer was a purely a private matter, but the failure to share with coreligionists apparent evidence of God’s favor countered the customary practice of Mormons to bear faith-promoting witness. Second, he most assuredly did not ostentatiously kneel in prayer— a practice atypical for Mormons—but instead offered a private, brief, and silent entreaty, similar to the sort of supplications that would later become common among athletes during competitions. Ultimately, the question of Alma Richards’s Olympic prayer relates to the larger issue of the use of sport as an instrument of social assimilation and the reinforcing of faith. This is nothing new. Church-affiliated educational institutions from Notre Dame to Brigham Young have sponsored athletic teams for this purpose since the late nineteenth century. The Alma Richards story is unusual in that it involves a religious institution, the LDS church, officially using an individual athlete’s specific expression of faith to inspire the flock, to project a “mainstream” image of cultural respectability, and to indirectly support Salt Lake City’s bid to obtain the Winter Olympics. There is nothing untoward in any of that. What is troublesome is how stories of Richards’s alleged prayer were

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constructed, even exaggerated, so that the faith-related purpose took precedent over factual accuracy. No attempt was made to ascertain the veracity of the story, in whole or in part. And despite a compelling 2007 article in which David Lund questioned the account of Richards’s public prayer, the story continued to be repeated uncritically and with embellishments; prior to the 2012 London Summer Games, for instance, the Deseret News credited Richards with having set a world record, instead of an Olympic record.45 Does it matter? Well, yes. Extraordinary professions of religiosity and overt examples of God’s favor provide a potent means of reinforcing and transmitting faith; given the folkloric status such tales command, it seems imperative to ensure their accuracy. Personal testimonies of spiritual experiences, borne by Latter-day Saints, form a vital part of Mormonism; observers may consider such testimonies to be experiential perceptions or to be contrived parables—in other words, expressions of belief intended to bolster religiosity. However, statements about historical figures—which might be taken as gospel truths that have withstood the test of time— should be faithful to history, not faithful history. While faith-promoting history is not solely an LDS issue, attributing religiosity to Richards’s gold medal performance not only attached a defining quality to one of Utah’s finest athletes, it also positioned him as an exemplar for all those who seek evidence of divine intervention in mundane events. The uncritical acceptance of a questionable account about an undocumented Olympic prayer created a distorted, if not false, representation of Alma Richards and his historic achievement. It is only certain that phenomenal leg strength and indomitable determination propelled him over the bar; more than that need not be said. Alma Richards deserves a place in the pantheon of great Utah, Mormon, and American athletes for the same reasons that brought him fame before it was fashionable to emphasize a questionable instance of public devotion—he was Utah’s first Olympic gold medalist, he adhered to his religion’s dietary proscriptions, and he became the most versatile and accomplished track and field athlete of his generation.

45

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Trent Toone, Deseret News, July 27, 2012; Lunt, “Mormons and the Olympics.”


UTAH STATE HISTORICAL SOCIETY

Male and Female Teachers in Early Utah and the West By VAL D. RUST

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wen Wister’s famous novel, The Virginian, contains a classic story of a young eastern woman braving “a country where Indians and wild animals live unchained” to teach in Bear Creek, Wyoming. After exchanging letters with the people of Bear Creek about a “schoolmarm” position, Miss Mary Stark Wood leaves Vermont, travels west, and falls in love with the Virginian.1 Western fiction often featured such women. Hamlin Garland’s Prairie Folks tells of Lily Graham, an eastern woman as lovely “as if builded of the pink and white clouds.” Graham crosses the prairies of Iowa to teach and finds herself acting as a savior for her pupil’s parents, whose lives with each other have become fraught with difficulty.2 These sentimental stories provided a moving image of the westward migration of young female teachers, but they represented only a small slice of social reality. Men taught school children in the nineteenth-century American West as much, or more, than women did—a function, perhaps, of the region’s demographics. In Utah, the gender of educators was connected not only to population but also to religion. As they settled Utah, members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints opened schools connected to the church’s fundamental unit, the ward. In these settings, and according to the Latter-day Students from the Homer School Saint (LDS or Mormon) worldview, teachers in Salt Lake County, 1911–1912. Val D. Rust is professor of education at UCLA. He is the director of the Center for International and Development Education. He recently served as the faculty chair of the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies and served for many years as the director of the International Education Office at UCLA. 1 2

Owen Wister, The Virginian (New York: Macmillan, 1903), 60–64, 90 (quotation). Hamlin Garland, Prairie Folks (New York: Macmillan, 1899), 102.

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could be either male or female. In contrast, women primarily served as the faculty of mission schools founded in Utah by Protestant denominations. Then, in the last quarter of the nineteenth century, the relationship between religion and the gender of teachers took another turn with the creation of LDS “academies,” with their largely male staffs. It was not until the close of the nineteenth century, when the state finally opened public schools, that more and more women began instructing Utah’s children. Thus, in Utah, whatever entity sponsored a school played a critical role in whether men or women led the classroom—and throughout the latter half of the nineteenth century, those entities often had religious affiliations. The assumption that a school teacher will be a woman was established in the mid-nineteenth century and is now so commonplace in American culture that we use female pronouns when speaking of teachers. However, at the time, in the South and in the West, men served as teachers as often as women. Although most mainstream Americans imagined an “impermeable boundary” between men’s public, political, and economic role, and women’s private, domestic, and maternal role, the school crossed this boundary. It functioned in both the public and the private domain. The idea that a woman might have a career as a professionally trained teacher developed slowly. It was finally established in the 1830s and 1840s with the coming of the American common school, an institution created to meet the budding industrial demands for educated workers, as well as to satisfy the Jacksonian striving for an educated citizenry.3 The common school in America was an importation of the Prussian Volksschule, an eightyear school for the German masses, distinguished from schools for the elites and charged with imparting the basic skills of arithmetic and reading, patriotism, and faith in God. Americans adopted its curriculum but extended its mission to include all young people, who were to have a “common” schooling experience. In a single generation, almost all the states in the union had created a new, democratic school system. Soon afterward, the states put compulsory attendance laws in place. The cost of establishing an all-encompassing common school in every city and hamlet of America would have been prohibitive if teachers had been paid a professional salary. The genius of the American school system was that school leaders called on the talents of better-educated females. Women gladly took on the burden of serving as teachers in the common schools, and they made them function without demanding salaries equivalent to those of men. In 1857 New England, for instance, men earned substantially larger salaries than did women.4 3 Lawrence A. Cremin, American Education: The National Experience, 1783–1876 (New York: Harper Collins, 1980). 4 Edgar B. Wesley, The NEA: The First Hundred Years. The Building of the Teaching Profession (New York: Harper Brothers, 1957), 10. In Massachusetts, male teachers earned $43.63 every month, more than twice as much as women ($20.34). In Connecticut, men earned $29.00 a month, while women earned $17.25. In Rhode Island, men earned $34.50 a month, while women earned $20.34.

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Even though at the Table 1. Gender in the West, 1890 beg inning of the nineState or Territory Percent Male teenth century most formal school teachers had been California 58 men, by the middle of the Colorado 59.5 century, teaching had shiftIdaho 60.7 Nevada 64.4 ed to become a primarily Oregon 58 female occupation in New Washington 62.3 England. Of course, women had long given instruction in an informal capacity. In 1647, colonial leaders mandated that some mechanism be set up to school the young in every community of at least fifty householders. New Englanders usually accomplished this goal by enlisting and providing some remuneration to a woman who would gather her neighbor’s boys and girls together in her home and teach them reading skills, faith, and habits of good behavior.5 Throughout the colonial period, therefore, large numbers of women gave instruction, but their work was viewed as a family responsibility.6 As long as the teaching of young children was understood as an extension of family responsibilities, the separate-sphere concept was retained. Working with small children was seen as a nurturing process natural to women. The establishment of the common school did not destroy that basic dualism of male and female roles because many Americans viewed the entrance of women into the common schools as an extension of the role of the mother. In fact, Horace Mann, the father of the American common school movement, argued for the employment of women teachers by defining “teaching as a nurturing behavior that was natural to women.”7 The Boston Board of Education reinforced Mann’s claim, declaring that “females are incomparably better teachers for young children than males. . . . Their manners are more mild and gentle, hence more in consonance with the tenderness of childhood.”8 Educational historians have supported the notion of teacher as female, projecting a New England regional perspective such that it has become a national perspective. It is true that in New England almost all early common school teachers were female. Some historians estimate that just prior to the Civil War, at least one in five women in Massachusetts taught at some time in her life.9 The educational historian R. Freeman Butts noted 5 Joel Perlmann and Robert A. Margo, Women’s Work? American Schoolteachers: 1650–1920 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2001). 6 Kathleen Weiler, Country Schoolwomen: Teaching in Rural California, 1850–1950 (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1998). 7 Thomas Woody, A History of Women’s Education in the United States (Lancaster, PA: Science Press, 1929), 1:463. 8 Horace Mann, Fourth Annual Report of the Board of Education (Boston: Boston Board of Education, 1840). 9 Richard Bernard and Maris Vinovskis, “The Female Teachers in Antebellum Massachusetts,” Journal of Social History 10, no. 3 (1977): 332–45.

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that “by the Civil War the American teacher was female.”10 However, objective data from other parts of the country do not support this claim. Whereas in 1869–1870, approximately 86.4 percent of all school teachers in New England were female, in the South the reverse was true: almost three quarters were male.11 In the West, as late as 1890, California and Nevada were the only two western states and territories where female teachers held a majority—and it was slim. A simplistic explanation might be that the population in the nineteenth-century-West was predominantly male. In New England, in 1890, males were in the majority only in Vermont (50.9 percent), while the western states and territories were skewed toward males. Moreover, the 1890 demographics represent a dramatic drop in the percentage of male dominance in the West (see Table 1). For example, in 1870, 76.1 percent of people in Nevada were males, and that figure dropped to 64.4 percent over the following twenty years.12 Accordingly, the teachers of the West were not typically “mild and gentle” women, who “cherished the tenderness of childhood.” More often they were men whose lives were honed and strengthened by the brutality of the deserts and mountains of the West. Of course, men did not settle the West alone. Some eastern women, including teachers, also braved the unknown. Around the middle of the nineteenth century, the National Board of Popular Education sent more than 250 women west to teach.13 Still, men dominated the West, and they led classrooms more often than women did. Utah is a special case. In 1890, there were more men than women in the population, but they held only a slight, 52.8 percent, majority. Utah’s initial Euro-American settlement by Mormon pioneers gave the state a greater balance between males and females than in much of the American West. During the nineteenth century, men somewhat dominated the ranks of teachers in Utah, a fact that was all the more remarkable because the sexes were more balanced in Utah than in other western states and territories. In 1870–1871, for example, 55.1 percent of all Utah teachers were male. With the passage of time, women increasingly led Utah classrooms—by the end of World War I, three quarters of the state’s teachers were female—but the question remains, why did men and women play equal teaching roles in Utah through the end of the nineteenth century?14 Though the first schools of Utah would today be considered private 10

R. F. Butts and L. A. Cremin, History of Education in American Culture (New York: Henry Holt, 1953),

284. 11 The United States Bureau of Education was first established in 1868, so no national data exist prior to that time. 12 U.S. Bureau of Education, Annual Survey of Education (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Bureau of Education, 1923–1924). 13 Polly Welts Kaufman, Women Teachers on the Frontier (New Haven:Yale University Press, 1984), 5–7. 14 U.S. Bureau of Education, Annual Survey of Education.

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undertakings, they were part of the communal Mormon environment and were intended to serve all the children of a neighborhood or village.15 Prior to the 1890 free public school law, LDS wards mainly organized and administered basic schooling in Utah. The Mormon pioneers likely opened the Salt Lake Valley’s first school soon after their arrival in July 1847. That October, Mary Jane Dilworth gathered nine young pupils together in a military tent to instruct them in some fundamental knowledge.16 As the LDS church sent its members out to settle an area or as they moved on of their own initiative, they gathered in groups for mutual protection and cultivated a strong sense of community. While Mary Jane Dilworth, Utah’s first the Mormons were geographically isolated teacher. from the world, they nevertheless maintained a cosmopolitanism that ensured cultural and social development. By 1854, nearly all the LDS wards in the Utah Territory operated a school, an institution many community members saw as the local “common school,” which provided basic schooling for all children. In Salt Lake City, for example, there were “21 school districts, each coterminous with the city’s 21 Mormon wards (or parishes), and each with its own elected three-person school board.”17 The ward school had a quasi-public nature, even though an ecclesiastic unit controlled it. While school boards held the formal responsibility of appointing teachers, Mormon bishops (the lay leaders of the wards) played an important role in selecting them. In fact, the position of teacher was considered a “calling” that came from a bishop. Even though I have not been able to find pronouncements by early church and civic leaders about the value of women teachers, with their unique female traits, as had been made by the fathers of the American common school movement, the Mormon general authorities tended to link teaching with parenting more broadly defined. In 1865, Heber C. Kimball emphasized that “as parents and teachers, we should try with all of our ability to impress upon the minds of our young people, by precept and example, the principles of truth.”18 Acting as parents and as teachers in the communal environment, both men and women had this responsibility. 15 Frederick S. Buchanan, “Education in Utah,” in Utah History Encyclopedia, ed. Allan Kent Powell (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 1994), 153–54. 16 Andrew Love Neff, The History of Utah, 1847–1869 (Salt Lake City: Deseret News Press, 1940), 351. 17 Frederick S. Buchanan, Culture Clash and Accommodation: Public Schooling in Salt Lake City, 1890–1994 (Salt Lake City: Smith Research Associates / Signature Books, 1996), 1. 18 Heber C. Kimball, February 19, 1865, in Journal of Discourses, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (London and Liverpool: Latter-day Saints’ Book Depot, 1854–1886), 11:86.

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A kaleidoscope of teaching arrangements existed in early Utah. In one variation, the LDS church incorporated the school into priesthood functions, and men’s authority over women was not to be questioned. Such an orientation was consistent with the prevailing national ideology that men and women belonged to separate spheres.19 Other educational arrangements in Utah did not make such a clear distinction, but used the participation and talents of both men and women in educating the young. Sometimes, church leaders simply appointed anyone who was willing to take on the burden of teaching. That person might have been a man who had been maimed in outdoor work. Or it might have been a young girl who saw an opportunity for a person without formal training to yet take up a “holy calling” in a school.20 Louisa Lula Greene represented such a case. After entering the classroom as a teacher, she lamented, “I want to be a very good teacher, and do not know how. I feel that I am not competent as yet to do justice in this respect and so am not satisfied with what I do.”21 In a third variation, a ward would set a specific standard and demand that a legitimate candidate, male or female, must meet that standard. Fifteenyear-old Mary Jane Mount Tanner was just such a person. She tried unsuccessfully to gain a position, but then studied arithmetic, geography, and grammar and practiced reading, writing, and spelling enough so that a year later she impressed the examiners enough to be offered a position.22 Fourth, a local Mormon school would appoint the best possible teacher, even though that person might not be Mormon. In 1860, Warren and Wilson Dusenberry, two brothers from Illinois, passed through Utah on their way to California, where they attended Vacaville College. The Dusenberrys returned to Utah in 1862 and were the best candidates for teaching positions in Provo’s ward schools. A year later, the brothers started their own private “First Dusenberry School” and subsequently joined the LDS church.23 Among these types of church-run schools, Latter-day Saints clearly did not consider it appropriate to separate men’s (public) and women’s (private) roles. The Mormon church had swallowed up the conventional framework and had replaced it with a belief in the unity of all things in God’s sphere. It followed Apostle Paul’s assertion that “there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Jesus Christ.”24 According to the historian Christine 19 Anne Firor Scott, “Mormon Women, Other Women: Paradoxes and Challenges,” in The Mormon History Association’s Tanner Lectures: The First Twenty Years, ed. Dean L. May and Reid L. Neilson (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2006). 20 Jill C. Mulvay, “Zion’s Schoolmarms,” in Mormon Sisters: Women in Early Utah, ed. Claudia L. Bushman (Logan: Utah State University Press, 1997). 21 Louisa Lula Greene Richards, “Louisa Lula Greene Journal 1878–1940,” Church History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah (hereafter CHL). 22 Mary Jane Mount Tanner, Autobiography, circa 1870–1875, MS 8024, CHL. 23 Charles S. Peterson, “A New Community: Mormon Teachers and the Separation of Church and State in Utah's Territorial Schools,” Utah Historical Quarterly 48, no. 3 (1980): 299–300. 24 Galatians 4:28.

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Talbot, as Mormons strived for oneness, they tried to unite things that the broader society “insisted should remain separate.” Ideally, Mormonism did not distinguish between the home and the outside world and, instead, “subsumed the private individual, private property, religious and political conscience, and the private home into a broad, communitarian spiritualpolitical order.”25 God’s kingdom on earth demanded that men commit themselves to the home, child rearing, and other dimensions of life that the dominant American culture had marked as feminine. It also demanded that women commit themselves to the wider sphere of social relations, the economy, and political life.26 Both men and women, Brigham Young proclaimed, would “live together” in heaven “as one great family.”27 In other words, Mormons disavowed the public and private world and saw only an amalgamation of religion, family, economics, and politics, which they identified as God’s kingdom. This unification of spheres, Talbot argues, was best exemplified in polygamy: Even marriage was not to be based exclusively on love and affection, but also on the idea of a community-wide family whose higher purpose was to further God’s work.28 The very language Mormons used reflected that unity, for they addressed each other as “brothers” and “sisters” in a heavenly family.29 Talbot fails to include the schools and teaching as examples of a breakdown of the dualistic world found in eighteenth century America; and yet, it is a powerful example of the unity demanded by Mormon doctrines. Women participated fully not only as teachers but as principals, district superintendents, teacher trainers, teacher association officers, and academics in early Utah. While the LDS church took for granted that both men and women would devote their lives to the family, the definition of the family had been extended to the broader community, including the schools. This unity of the public and the private allowed women to bypass men’s authority through a direct relationship with God, gain access to important aspects of the broader community, and serve faithfully and fully in spheres denied to many of their female contemporaries.30 Although the Mormons founded more than three hundred settlements in the Great Basin before the death of Brigham Young in 1876, it would 25 Christine Talbot, “The Church Family in Nineteenth-Century America: Mormonism and the Public/Private Divide,” Journal of Mormon History 37, no. 4 (2011): 221. 26 Linda Thatcher and Patricia Lyn Scott, eds., Women in Utah History: Introduction (Logan: Utah State University Press, 2005); Janet Zollinger Giele, Two Paths to Women's Equality: Temperance, Suffrage, and the Origins of Modern Feminism (New York: Twayne, 1995). 27 Brigham Young, January 12, 1868, Journal of Discourses, 12:153. 28 Talbot, “The Church Family,” 221. 29 The kingdom of God also had economic and political dimensions. Women often participated in economic matters on an equal footing with men, as exemplified by the women’s cooperative movement. See Eileen V. Wallis, “The Women’s Cooperative Movement in Utah, 1869–1915,” Utah Historical Quarterly 71, no. 4 (2003). 30 Katherine Sarah Massoth, “Writing an Honorable Remembrance: Nineteenth-Century LDS Women’s Autobiography,” Journal of Mormon History 39, no. 2 (2013).

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not be possible to provide a statistical profile of male and female teachers in those earliest communities. But we have some indication of the gender of the first teachers from a collection of sites. In Manti, in 1850, Isaac Morley directed the building of a log schoolhouse, in which Jesse W. Fox acted as “the pioneer teacher.” Later, Mary Whiting became a permanent teacher.31 A year later, in Cedar City, George A. Smith helped establish the Iron County Mission and began teaching children before the settlers had even raised their homes. On Februar y 21, Smith noted that he commenced “a g rammar school in my wicky-up” for five young boys, who read by Jesse W. Fox, an early teacher in the “light of the camp fire, with only one Manti. grammar book.”32 This trend of both women and men teaching children in Utah settlements continued throughout the 1850s and 1860s. In 1852, in Ogden, Andrew Jensen recorded that “a common school was opened and conducted by a widow lady named Gean.”33 On May 2 of that year, in Nephi, Martha Spence Heywood wrote the following in her journal: “Sunday. Had a meeting to regulate about the school and was decided that would commence forthwith engaging Candace Smith to teach at the rate of five dollars a week and board herself.” Smith remained for only six weeks before moving to Manti, and Heywood was persuaded to take her place and teach the seventeen children in the school. While two women first taught Nephi’s school children, the village’s other early teachers included five men (Andrew Love, George Spencer, Amos Gustin, James Bailey, and Thomas Ord) and only one woman (Amy Sigler).34 Around 1853, in Provo, David John taught in the Fourth Ward School, while in Spanish Fork, a primitive schoolhouse became ready for use in 1857, and Samuel Cornaby, an English immigrant, became its first teacher. That fall of 1857, the people of Spanish Fork completed two other buildings used for schooling; the teachers were “Hon. Silas Hillam and Mrs. 31

W. H. Lever, History of Sanpete and Emery Counties, Utah (Ogden: W. H. Lever, 1898), 16. The U.S. Bureau of Education, a statistics office, was established in 1868, so no records are available prior to that time. George A. Smith, Journal, 1850–1851, MSS 654-1, p. 21, typescript, Utah State Historical Society, Salt Lake City, Utah (hereafter USHS). 33 Milton Lynn Bennion, Mormonism and Education (Salt Lake City: Department of Education of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1939), 14. 34 Martha Spence Heywood, Not by Bread Alone: The Journal of Martha Spence Heywood, 1850–1856, ed. Juanita Brooks (Salt Lake City: Utah State Historical Society, 1978), 79. 32

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Margaret Leah.”35 In Midway, the first school was a log cabin, but it was soon replaced by a “pot rock” school house. In the early 1860s, Simon Higgenbotham became the first teacher of Midway’s children, instructing them in a program of reading, writing, and arithmetic. Attewall Wootton, whose family had converted to Mormonism in the early 1840s, replaced Higgenbotham in 1866. Wootton served successfully as an educator throughout his long life.36 Though exact information is unavailable, these case studies demonstrate that men and women alike took on the role of establishing basic schooling. This balance of male and female Martha Spence Heywood. teachers continued in the Mormon settlements established after the Civil War. Phil Mass settled at Henry’s Fork in Daggett County in 1862 and established a ranch. His family consisted of four boys and five girls, so in 1869 he hired William Pearson to come to his ranch and serve as tutor. When, in 1877, a public school was finally established in the area, Pearson became the teacher at that one-room school. Later, Mark Manley and Robert Hereford also served as teachers; each received fifty dollars a month.37 The curriculum consisted of reading, writing, arithmetic, spelling, and history.38 In 1870, Kanab became a permanent settlement under the leadership of Levi Stewart, who brought fifty-two people from the southern Salt Lake Valley to colonize the area. In that year, the colonists organized an LDS ward and built a combined school and meetinghouse. Beginning with forty-seven pupils, the school quickly expanded to more than one hundred pupils, taught by William D. Johnson and assisted by Persis Brown. In 1874, Orderville, just north of Kanab, was established as a United Order settlement, and its first teacher, Ellen Meeks Hoyt, had received a teaching certificate at age fifteen.39 As they opened these rudimentary schools, Mormon colonists were 35

Bennion, Mormonism and Education. Leslie S. Raty, “A History of Wasatch County, 1859–1899” (master’s thesis, Brigham Young University, 1954). 37 They were almost all one-room schools. In 1883, for example, 441 schools employed 491 teachers. Stanley S. Ivins, “Free Schools Come to Utah,” Utah Historical Quarterly 22, no. 4 (1954), 312–42. 38 Donald Weir Baxter, “The History of Public Education in Daggett County, Utah, and Adjacent Areas” (master’s thesis, Brigham Young University, 1959), 33–34. 39 Martha Sonntag Bradley, A History of Kane County (Salt Lake City: Utah State Historical Society and Kane County Commission, 1999), 86. 36

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responding to their church’s educational imperatives. Brigham Young observed that “Most of the people called Latter-day Saints have been taken from the rural and manufacturing districts of this and the old countries, and they belonged to the poorest of the poor.” Yet he exclaimed that the gospel had awakened in most of them a desire to seek after the best life has to offer. The gathering of the Latter-day Saints of both sexes was intended to inspire them to seek after “every accomplishment, every polished grace, every useful attainment in mathematics, music, and in all science and art.” He admonished his co-religionists to encourage their children to “become more informed in every department of true and useful learning than their fathers are.”40 Of course, Young had overstated the case. Early converts were usually poor and certainly did not represent the elites of society, but some of them—both men and women—had received as good an education as easterners and willingly shared their talents with the young in building up God’s unified kingdom on earth. Orson Pratt had attended various schools, for example, including an academy in New York State.41 Louisa Barnes Pratt attended local schools and finished at the “Female Academy” in Winchester, New Hampshire. She had gained teaching experience before she joined the LDS church and moved west. 42 Samuel Cornaby, the first teacher in Spanish Fork, graduated from Borough Road Normal School in London. Elmina Shepard Taylor received normal school training in New York, and Emmeline B. Wells was schooled in Massachusetts.43 Karl G. Maeser, the founder of Brigham Young Academy, joined the LDS church in Germany after attending a university preparatory school and the Friedrichstadt Schullehrerseminar, or teacher training college.44 The father of Mary and Ida Cook, a physician, saw to it that Mary graduated from State Normal School at Albany and that Ida graduated from Oswego State Normal School, both in the state of New York.45 Young recognized this talent among the pioneers and emphasized that “a good school teacher is one of the most essential members in society.”46 However, problems arose from the beginning. As early as 1851, in Salt Lake County, authorities required teachers to present themselves for examination—and those examinations demonstrated that the teachers usually fell “far below the standard of the qualifications.”47 Mediocrity was not universally the case, however. For more than thirty years during the nineteenth 40

Brigham Young, March 4, 1860, Journal of Discourses, 8:9. Orson Pratt, The Orson Pratt Journals, ed. Elden J. Watson (Salt Lake City: Elden J. Watson, 1975). 42 Louisa Barnes Pratt, Schoolmarm All My Life, ed. Joyce Kinkead (Salt Lake City: Signature Books, 2000), chapter one. 43 Mulvay, “Zion’s Schoolmarms.” 44 Brigham Young University, “Biographical Sketch: Karl G. Maeser,” ed. Office of the President (Provo, UT: L. Tom Perry Special Collections, Brigham Young University, n.d.). 45 Jill C. Mulvay, “The Two Miss Cooks: Pioneer Professionals for Utah Schools,” Utah Historical Quarterly 43, no. 4 (1975), 396–409. 46 Brigham Young, April and May, 1863, Journal of Discourses, 10:226. 47 “School Teachers, etc.” Deseret News, December 11, 1852. 41

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century Mary and Ida Cook had an impact on Utah’s education. In 1871, they were both employed by John R. Park at the University of Deseret. Mary became the principal of the university’s model graded school; both women actively prepared students to become teachers and served as officers in the teacher’s association.48 Also among Utah’s outstanding educators was Richard S. Horne of the Salt Lake City Fourteenth Ward School. In 1867, Brigham Young called him to go on a mission to St. George to restore order to the town’s rowdy schools.49 In St. George, Horne emphasized diligence and discipline, and he reminded his students that school was meant “to refine your intellect and store your minds with wisdom.” One of Horne’s fellow teachers honored him by saying that his was “the best school of the town and the teacher was my ideal of what a teacher should be. Good governing ability—he had perfect order and much method.”50 He had apparently learned that method by attending the Parent School in Salt Lake City. The initial experience of the Parent School illustrated the extent to which men filled the ranks of Utah’s first educators. In November 1850, Orson Spencer supervised the creation of the Parent School in Salt Lake City to help “gentlemen” qualify as teachers for the LDS ward schools.51 Early notices for the institution demonstrated its connection with male teachers. One notice implored “young men, middle aged, old men, and all men, married or unmarried . . . to come forward as speedily as possible.”52 The Parent School held its first classes in the home of John Pack, but his house was not large enough to accommodate women. The school rectified this injustice the next year by offering training to both males and females. The school attended to the best pedagogy of the day, including a “large and well-selected assortment of school books” provided by Wilford Woodruff. 53 Of course, the curriculum included LDS scriptural canon, including the Book of Mormon, the Doctrine and Covenants, and the Old and the New Testament. The intent of such undertakings was to make the Mormon territory as nearly independent of the outside world as possible. The young people were being cultivated to thrive in a Mormon culture and become capable, contributing members of an independent territory. The position of teacher was considered a “calling” on the part of the bishop. All too often, men failed to respond to such a calling, and the burden fell on willing women. God’s unified kingdom demanded that both men and women respond. The men were challenged to accept their responsibility. For example, in 1872, George A. Smith, speaking in the Salt Lake 48

Mulvay, “The Two Miss Cooks.” Robert V. Bullough, “Teachers and Teaching in the Nineteenth Century: St. George, Utah,” Journal of Curriculum Theorizing 4, no. 2 (1982). 50 Ibid. 51 The formal name was the University of Deseret. 52 Neff, History of Utah, 353; “Parent School,” Deseret News, November 16, 1850 (quotation). 53 “Parent School,” Deseret News, November 30, 1850 (quotation), January 11, 1851. Notices for the Parent School appeared in each edition of the Deseret News until the school collapsed a year after its opening. 49

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Tabernacle, exclaimed, “Let me say to you, brethren, there is no calling more important than to teach a common school.”54 Likewise, at the LDS church’s 1867 general conference, Erastus Snow observed, “I will say that our school teachers should not only be men qualified to teach the various branches of education, but they should be men possessing the spirit of the gospel, and who, in every look and word, and in all their discipline and intercourse with their pupils are influenced by that spirit.”55 The calling of a teacher was given to both men and women; however, in 1872 male teachers earned, on average, $25.93 a month, while female teachers earned $13.00. We must keep in mind that much of a teacher’s remuneration came as in-kind benefits such as food or fuel.56 As time passed, the question of who would instruct school children increasingly became not only a question of gender, but also one of religious affiliation. Not all ward school teachers belonged to the Mormon church. Even though such teachers constituted only a small quantity of the ward instructors, their numbers were apparently significant enough that Brigham Young chastised bishops for ignoring Mormon teachers in favor of outsiders.57 On the other hand, after the completion of the transcontinental railroad in 1869, a growing non-Mormon population complained about the ward schools with their Mormon-controlled curriculum, hiring practices, and facilities. The Latter-day Saints usually operated the ward schools in church buildings, and the non-Mormons claimed that these quasi-public institutions should not be conducted in buildings owned by the LDS church.58 Non-Mormons were also concerned that the school board not be part of the ward structure, and that the teachers be hired by a broader-based school board.59 By the early 1870s, these ward school districts began to be consolidated into county school systems, overseen by a county superintendent of schools. In 1874 Mary Cook was nominated to be the Salt Lake County super intendent, but ter r itor ial laws prevented this from happening. In 1877, Ida Cook, who was now the principal of a female high school in Logan, was nominated to be the Cache County superintendent of schools. She too was prevented from such an appointment. In fact, soon after she had been prevented from taking the position, Brigham Young appointed Ida Cook as the principal of the new Brigham Young College, the precursor to Utah State University.60 However, such nominations suggest that gender was less an issue among Mormons than competence. 54

George A. Smith, April 8, 1872, Journal of Discourses, 14:371–76. Erastus Snow, October 8, 1867, Journal of Discourses, 12:177–79. 56 United States Bureau of Education, Report of the Commissioner of Education for the Year 1873 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1874). 57 Brigham Young, April 6, 1867, Journal of Discourses, 11:353. 58 Marguerite Cameron, This Is the Place (Caldwell, ID: Caxton, 1939), 200. 59 Buchanan, Culture Clash. 60 Mulvay, “The Two Miss Cooks.” 55

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The early Mormon ward schools focused almost entirely on basic education.61 Even though some pioneering Mormon teachers (such as Orson Pratt) gave private instruction in advanced subjects, Utah’s mission schools represented the major institutional options for higher schooling. These mission schools— which Protestant denominations founded after the Civil War—followed the New England pattern in that their teaching staffs were dominated by females, sent from the East by Episcopal, Presbyterian, Congregational, and other churches. In 1866, the first Episcopal missionary bishop, Daniel Tuttle, arrived in Salt Lake City, and there, a year later, founded St. Mark’s school. The Reverend R. S. Foote served as a part-time teacher to assist a Miss Wilson H. Dusenberry. Davenport, who had come west from Brooklyn to teach. The school offered special classes for boys who might wish to go to a university in the East.62 In 1870, Episcopal Church services began in Ogden, and the School of the Good Shepherd opened that same year. In 1873, St. John’s school opened in Logan, and in 1880, the Rowland Hall boarding school for girls opened in Salt Lake City. In 1879, the Congregational Church established a “New West Education Commission” and supported a wide range of schools in the West. By 1893, twenty-six of these schools existed in Utah, with the showcase institution being the Ogden Academy, which appointed Hiram Waldo Ring as its principal and Virginia W. Ludden as the head of the elementary department. In the second year Bernice Peaslee Ring, the wife of the principal, became the third teacher. Later Mary L. McClelland and Abbie Parish Noyes joined the teaching staff.63 Nineteenth-century Utah also had Meth-odist schools, where, as at other Protestant-run institutions, women dominated the faculty. In the 1860s, in Heber, the Methodist Women’s Missionary Society set up a school and the teachers were, in succession, Angie Steele, Jennie Clafin, M. A. Hand, Miss Crosbie, Miss Lestr, and Miss Stoner.64 Marysvale was a mining town, and many of the people in the settlement were non61

Smith, Journal, 1850–1851, USHS. Paul La Mar Martin, “A Historical Study of the Religious Education Program of the Episcopal Church in Utah” (master’s thesis, Brigham Young University, 1967), 36. 63 Gary Topping, “The Ogden Academy: A Gentile Assault on Mormon Country,” Journal of the West 23 (January 1984): 37–46; Joel E. Ricks, The History of a Valley: Cache Valley, Utah-Idaho (Logan, UT: Deseret News Publishing Company, 1956). 64 Raty, “History of Wasatch County.” 62

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Mormons. In 1891, the Methodist Women’s The Ontario Canyon School in Missionar y Society provided a woman Park City, 1902 or 1903, with teacher, Lulu Christian, who opened a class- teacher Daniel B. Shields. room and offered the only schooling in the community at the time. She was succeeded by Erma Osborn in 1904, Lulu Cole in 1906, Elida Mork in 1907, and Lulu Gamble in 1909.65 Presbyterians came relatively late to the creation of mission schools in Utah. In 1877, the Woman’s Executive Committee of Home Missions organized for the purpose of providing schools and teachers in the West and Southwest. The committee had a particular interest in working among the Mormons, Native Americans, and Spanish-speaking peoples. The Presbyterian schools in Utah included Willard Academy in American Fork, New Jersey Academy in Logan, Wasatch Academy in Mount Pleasant, and the Salt Lake Collegiate Institute in Salt Lake City. All of these Protestant missionary schools followed an obvious gender norm of providing female teachers, women who came to Utah from the eastern part of the country. Though these instructors often had graduated from “the finest colleges,” the local minister or priest (who might also act as a part-time teacher) usually supervised them.66 The number of females in the Protestant institutions was somewhat offset by the makeup of the faculty at other academies, such as the Catholic All Hallows Academy in Salt Lake 65 Wilford Meeks Halladay, “A Brief History of Piute County and Its Educational Development” (master’s thesis, Brigham Young University, 1951), 28–29. 66 Ibid., 62.

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City and the Military Academy in Ogden, which preferred to employ men.67 On the other hand, women apparently taught at private denominational schools that were not connected with missionary activity. In the largely non-Mormon mining town of Silver Reef, the Catholic Church opened St. Mary’s day school in 1879 for children of that faith. Sister Superior Euphonsine became its first teacher; a Sister Regas replaced her.68 As the nineteenth century progressed, Utahns increasingly looked to the status of higher education in their state. As opportunities for secondary schooling grew, the gender composition of Utah educators also changed. Protestant mission schools clearly offered the first opportunities for extensive secondary schooling in Utah. The LDS ward schools usually provided only a basic curriculum in one-room schools that made it difficult for wards to establish high schools and higher studies. The commissioner of education for the territory, Jacob S. Boreman, reported to the Legislative Assembly in the late 1880s that no statute existed for the creation of high schools.69 Mormon-run high schools in Utah were almost non-existent. As late as 1896, when the state issued its first report on public education, Dr. John R. Park, state superintendent, noted that, “Thus far, practically no schools of higher grade than the eighth, have been maintained outside of cities of the first and the second class.”70 Even then, the cities were lax in initiating public high schools. In fact, the first students graduating from public schools in Salt Lake City received their diplomas in 1893.71 In 1875, beginning with Brigham Young Academy in Provo, under the direction of Karl G. Maeser, the Mormon church finally began establishing a series of high schools, known as academies. These academies gave instruction to primary school children, secondary students, and students wishing to become teachers. Men largely made up the faculty of the academies, and one man—Maeser—left his imprint on twenty-two academies that the LDS church established over the next thirty years. Stakes (the Mormon ecclesiastical unit above the ward) ran these institutions, and thus they were named the Weber Stake Academy, Wasatch Stake Academy, Uintah Stake Academy, Emery Stake Academy, and so forth. Even though the academies provided secondary school curriculum, they were more closely aligned with higher education than with the common schools, and the male teachers in these academies often moved from the

67 United States Bureau of Education, Report of the Commissioner of Education for the Year 1890/91 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1894), 1348–49. 68 Alfred Bleak Stucki, “A Historical Study of Silver Reef: Southern Utah Mining Town” (master’s thesis, Brigham Young Univerisity, 1966). 69 Biennial Report of the Commissioner of Schools for Utah Territory, for the Years 1888–9 (Salt Lake City: George C. Lambert, 1890), 5–7. 70 Biennial Report of the Commissioner for the Years 1894 and 1895 (Salt Lake City: George Q. Cannon and Sons, 1896), 38. 71 Fifty Years of Public Education, Fiftieth Annual Report School Year 1939–1940 (Salt Lake City: Board of Education, 1940).

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academy into university positions. In Beaver in 1886, the LDS church established a stake academy, but transformed it in 1898 into the Murdock Academy, identified now as the first secondary school in the state established south of Provo. Its early teachers included its principal, Ephraim E. Ericksen, George Luke, and Thomas Joseph—each of whom went on to successful careers in academia.72 At Brigham Young Academy it was difficult to distinguish between a teacher and a professor. The Mormon academies not only reinforced the presence of men as teachers in Utah; they also undermined the mission school movement. Both the missionary schools and the LDS academies went into decline after 1896 with the establishment of a public school system after Utah gained statehood. Only the strongest of the academies, both Protestant and Mormon, survived. Public schools soon became the primary vehicle of education and contributed to the rapid growth in the number of female teachers. We have found that the myth that women taught in American schools from the time of the common school movement is accurate only in New England. In the South, men led classrooms almost exclusively. In the West, both men and women taught, a fact that partially reflected the preponderance of males in the general population, but also mirrored an overall openness of society. In contrast with the rest of the West, Utah had a good balance of men and women, which was evident in the gender of the teachers in both community and common schools. There were two exceptions. First, Protestant mission schools in Utah hired female teachers, in accordance with the New England pattern. The only men in these schools were usually the ministers, who played both an administrative role and a part-time teacher role. Second, LDS academies tended to hire male teachers, although some women worked in most of these schools. Generally, however, not only did a high ratio of male to female teachers exist in Utah, this ratio continued long after the proportion of male to female teachers was tipping in favor of females in the rest of the West. This took place in the latter part of the nineteenth century and into the early twentieth century. How do we explain this phenomenon? Perhaps it occurred because the Mormon church disavowed the traditional separation of male and female roles by establishing a communitarian ethos that “made no distinction between the private family and the broad Mormon community.”73 No pronouncement ever came from LDS leaders suggesting that women should not become teachers. Further, women saw fulfillment of their traditional role by entering the classroom alongside the men, who were admonished that they too must shoulder the burden of educating Mormon youth. Both men and women recognized that this burden should be seen neither as a domestic nor as a public responsibility, but as a responsibility of all adults in God’s kingdom. 72 Ephraim E. Ericksen, Memories and Reflections: The Autobiography of E. E. Ericksen, ed. Scott G. Kenney (Salt Lake City: Signature Books, 1987). 73 Talbot, “The Church Family,” 211.

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BOOK REVIEWS Lynching Beyond Dixie: American Mob Violence Outside the South. Edited by Michael J. Pfeifer. (Champaign: University of Illinois Press, 2013. 336 pp. Paper, $28.00.)

AMERICANS’ ALL-TOO-FREQUENT RESORT to “lynch law” to execute alleged (and actual) criminals as well as other perceived troublemakers is one of the black eyes on this nation’s history. Understandably, the vast majority of scholarship on lynching and other race-based forms of violence focuses on the American South. Michael Pfeifer’s edited collection of essays, Lynching Beyond Dixie, admirably fulfills its title’s promise in extending our gaze beyond the former Confederacy to recognize “rough justice” as a national—not simply a regional—phenomenon. The volume’s ten essays (plus an excellent editor’s introduction) take the reader on a tour of the United States, with half of the chapters focusing on “the West” (primarily Texas, Arizona, California, Kansas, and Utah), three on the Midwest, and two on the Northeast. The collection’s novelty is somewhat diminished by the fact that four of the ten essays have been published previously, but the convenience of having them all in one place justifies the book’s utility and contribution. One of the book’s truly outstanding features is a table charting all the known lynchings that took place outside the South in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, grouped by state but also including information about the locality, date, names of victims, race, alleged offense, method of killing, and sources. That the table is nearly sixty pages long, in small print, is itself a sobering testimony to the human toll of just this small slice of American violence. As is common in the literature, the authors cannot agree on what constitutes a lynching. Helen McLure stretches the definition to include a wide range of lethal hostilities between whites and Indians, as well as other cases that I would classify as murder, frontier violence, or mass violence. Without a precise definition, too many dissimilar types of violence are all included inside one term, thus diminishing its analytical utility. Even more questionable is Sundiata Keita Cha-Jua’s reference to “academic lynching” (166), in which scholars pay more attention analyzing white perpetrators than black victims—a critique-worthy imbalance, to be sure, but does it really constitute a contemporary act of lynching remotely akin to the original lethal act? All of the authors should be congratulated for their outstanding and careful primary source research. In many ways, the host of local nineteenthand early twentieth-century newspapers are the star witnesses here, as they represent the only known documentation for many of these lynchings. As for the individual essays, I can mention only a few highlights. Christopher Waldrep’s essay on the tension between politics and law in 1850s San Francisco—site of the largest vigilante movement in U.S. history—insightfully demonstrates how Americans came to exalt majoritarian politics over

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abstract constitutional law. Brent Campney’s treatment of Reconstructionera Kansas is a fine example of respectfully challenging previous scholars’ arguments through careful research and nuanced argument. Dennis Downey effectively contrasts the involvement of two ministers (one white, one black) in a 1903 lynching, thus revealing competing public theologies, democratic theories and discourses, and politics of the street. UHQ readers will be especially interested in Kimberley Mangun and Larry Gerlach’s analysis of newspaper treatments of the 1925 lynching of Robert Marshall in Carbon County, Utah, and its aftermath. Based on an impressive body of research, the essay reveals that the lynching conformed to fairly standard national patterns. Particularly interesting was the organization of a Day of Reconciliation in 1998 to heal the wounds from the lynching. Despite positive national press coverage, local residents grumbled that the event failed to remember the original murder that provoked the lynching; they also complained that dredging up the past was hardly a way to promote racial good feelings in a community that had largely forgotten the event. While acknowledging the challenges associated with this kind of post-conflict reconciliation, more familiar to us from settings such as South Africa or Rwanda, the authors seem overly dismissive of local concerns and critiques. Even more distracting are repeated mentions of Mormonism’s troubled history with race, but in a way that is only tangentially connected to the case at hand, thus making the references seem speculative and almost gratuitous. Scholars unfamiliar with the broader literature on lynching may miss some of the nuances propelling the various authors’ arguments. But all students of American history will benefit from considering how this nation’s conceptions of law, justice, democracy, popular sovereignty, and the common good are all rooted, at least in part, in a bloody history of extralegal violence. As this volume powerfully indicates, lynching is not just a southern problem—it is an American problem. PATRICK Q. MASON Claremont Graduate University

The Selected Letters of Bernard DeVoto and Katharine Sterne. Edited by Mark DeVoto. (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 2012. xix + 508 pp. Cloth, $29.95.)

AFTER A MASS FIRING OF non-Mormon faculty in February 1915, freshman Bernard DeVoto soured on the University of Utah and fled to Harvard. From a purported Cambridge vantage he wrote his inflammatory “Utah” for the American Mercury of March 1926. Without his Ivy League

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reinvention, DeVoto might never have edited the Saturday Review of Literature, written the influential “Easy Chair” column for Harper’s, or been the first native Utahn to win the Pulitzer Prize. A century later, however, it is not Harvard but the University of Utah whose press logo adorns DeVoto’s definitive body of correspondence. As recently as 1974, DeVoto’s biographer Wallace Stegner could write that “the name of Utah’s most prominent writer is still spelled in his home state with three letters, M.U.D.” Utah’s imprint on this long-awaited collection signals that the hatchet is buried and concedes that DeVoto’s gifts of observation and description outweigh his sins. Into these letters to Katharine Sterne (the “gallant” dedicatee of his The Year of Decision: 1846), DeVoto poured his passion for western history unabashedly. Sterne, a tubercular patient in Poughkeepsie, New York, initiated their epistolary bond with a fan letter praising a 1933 DeVoto story in the Saturday Evening Post. One decade and nearly eight hundred letters later, DeVoto confessed, “I certainly never would have written to a man as I have to you [and] you have represented some blend of wife-daughter-mother to this odd soul” (364). In 1940 DeVoto, with Arthur Schlesinger Jr., made a field trip of western rivers and trails for Year of Decision, dispatching rambling narratives to Sterne. “I found that a boyhood in the mountains plus Uncle Sam’s careful training of an intelligence officer [during World War I] have soundly supported historical research,” he exulted. “All my recreation of the country from [explorers’] journals was right” (238). DeVoto’s reactions to monumental events enlighten us, particularly World War II, during which he studied extreme first aid (“I now know how to deliver babies in the street”), and the Great Hurricane of 1938, which devastated New England (“water cascaded with a roar loud enough to drown out the wind”) (309, 180). The hurricane struck less than a month after a personal drama nearly as turbulent: DeVoto’s blowup at his idol and “father image these last three years,” the poet Robert Frost, whom he said was “break[ing] down into about equal parts willful child, demanding child, jealous woman, and mere devil” (176, 174). Mutual recriminations continued through 1943, when DeVoto told Sterne, “I’ll remind him that the life insurance tables give me the probability that I’ll outlive him” (355). Fatefully, by the time Frost recited his poetry at the Kennedy inauguration, DeVoto had been dead five years. An appendix to the book, “The Bucolics of Decadence,” a memoir of DeVoto’s youth he drafted at Sterne’s request, is a treasure of Ogden history. In the memoir, he maintained that Moroni Olsen, a fellow community theater alumnus, agonized over changing his name on Broadway. “I had great difficulty,” cracked DeVoto, “dissuading [Olsen] from dropping the i” (434).

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Formerly a New York Times art critic, Sterne held her own with perspicacity and wit. She grumbled, for example, that another patient endlessly disrupted her sleep with “nose-blowings that are answered by hounds in [neighboring] counties; farts that contravene every convention of decent and humane warfare” (366). The correspondence ceased at her death in 1944. The index disconcertingly omits many names of importance to researchers of Ogden history. Otherwise, this collection’s significance as guide to DeVoto’s strengths and biases cannot be overemphasized. VAL HOLLEY Washington, D.C.

Traqueros: Mexican Railroad Workers in the United States 1870–1930. By Jeffrey Marcos Garcilazo. (Denton: University of North Texas Press, 2012. viii + 235 pp. Cloth, $49.95.)

THE STORY OF THE IRISH and Chinese laborers who constructed the first transcontinental railroad—culminating with the driving of the golden spike at Promontory Summit in northern Utah on May 10, 1869— has been told in countless books and venues and stands as an example of the contribution that millions of immigrants from many countries have made in building America. However, for Central Pacific Railroad officials preparing for the construction eastward from California, Chinese workers were not the first choice. “Prior to 1869, the Central Pacific briefly considered importing ‘thousands of peons’ from Mexico but Euro American opposition in California ended that possibility” (38). But not for long; as early as 1871, Spanish-speaking residents of southern Colorado and northern New Mexico took employment with the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railroad to become the first of thousands of traqueros from Mexico and the American Southwest to build and maintain the network of railroads that spread across North America. In Utah, Spanish-speaking workers helped construct the Denver and Rio Grande Railroad from Denver to Salt Lake City in the early 1880s and have worked to maintain Utah’s railroad tracks ever since. By the first decades of the twentieth century, “Mexican origin workers sought gainful employment in virtually every state in the union” and made up the largest group of railroad track maintenance workers in the American West (168). Jeffrey Garcilazo begins his study with an overview of the significance of the railroad in the West and how Hispanic workers filled an essential role, especially as other immigrant workers—Italians, Greeks, Irish, and

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Chinese—moved from railroad maintenance work to jobs in the mines, industry, and small businesses. In time, some Hispanic workers also moved from the railroad to other jobs as the $1.25 per day they earned fell far short of wages in other industries. Five chapters focus on the Hispanics— Labor Recruitment, Work Exper iences, Labor Struggles, Boxcar Communities, and Traquero Culture. In these chapters Garcilazo addresses such questions and topics as why Mexican track workers were hired, what incentives they were offered, the arduous and dangerous work, the challenges that workers faced, unionization and other forms of resistance to perceived mistreatment, and the community life of workers and their families in the United States. The latter chapter is of particular interest to cultural historians and folklorists as the author describes the family, religion, godparenthood, mutual aid societies, food, folktales, superstitions, songs, Mexican patriotism, Americanization, and the dominant role that women played in fostering and maintaining a culture that sustained their men in the isolated and difficult jobs they encountered. Readers should be aware that this study was completed in 1995 as the author’s dissertation at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Jeffrey Garcilazo passed away in 2001 at the age of forty-five. We owe a debt of gratitude to mentors, colleagues, and family who carried through with the publication of this important study. However, the most recent sources cited in the extensive bibliography are from the mid-1990s, and an updated or supplemental bibliography would enhance the usefulness of this study. As questions of immigration reform, restriction, and citizenship continue to demand our attention, it is important that we look back to examine how the Hispanic community became such an important force in America’s political, economic, social and cultural history. This book is an excellent resource to help further our understanding and hopefully encourage students of Utah history to investigate further the traquero and other Hispanic experiences in our state. ALLAN KENT POWELL Salt Lake City

Gunfight at the Eco-Corral:Western Cinema and the Environment. By Robin L. Murray and Joseph K. Heumann. (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2012. xii + 260. Paper, $24.95.)

IN GUNFIGHT AT THE ECO-CORRAL, Robin Murray and Joseph Heumann seek to analyze representations of nature in western films through an “eco-critical” lens. This project has several goals: first, to include

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westerns in the broader canon of nature writing; second, to explore how environmental concerns are reflected in these films. The third goal, a call to extend “the middle place” to westerns, is a response to American Indian Literature, Environmental Justice, and Ecocriticism by Joni Adams (2001) and will be fairly unintelligible to readers not familiar with that work. The authors organize their first five main chapters around a central environmental concern. Chapter one deals with the conflict between free-range ranching and fenced-in homesteads, chapter two with the conflict between different types of mining, chapter three with property rights and access to water, chapter four with land and oil rushes, and chapter five with the building of the railway. Chapter six differs in that it examines the portrayal of Natives’ relationships with the environment in both white and Native-made movies. Gunfight is simultaneously insightful and deeply flawed. It is strongest when it explores a particular film in-depth and then applies an eco-critical reading to that film, as it does with The Last Hunt and Smoke Signals. The book also presents innovative readings of well-trod classics like Shane and newer films like There Will Be Blood, making a compelling argument for the need to pay attention to the environmental conflict at the heart of those movies and many other westerns. In this way, Gunfight succeeds in its first goal of demonstrating that westerns are a form of nature writing and can be read as such. As long as Gunfight stays within the realm of analyzing westerns as nature texts, it is on solid ground, but when the authors try to evaluate these narratives in relation to contemporary and modern environmental concerns, the book runs into trouble. For instance, the authors repeatedly demonstrate that the environmental message of a particular group of western films did not reflect contemporary scientific thinking about the causes of environmental degradation. The point of this argument is unclear, however, because, as the authors acknowledge elsewhere, moviemakers create films in response to idealized understandings and myths about the West, not current research. Inexplicably, however, the creation of popular attitudes toward the environment and the West are almost entirely absent from the book. Many of the films are also loosely situated historically, making it hard for non-experts to understand the significance of their particular environmental message. For instance, the Johnson County War, though referenced repeatedly, is not adequately explained, nor is progressivism, the New Deal, or the significance of 1960s counterculture. This is where the chapters that focus on one or two films, such as Smoke Signals, stand out because those films are clearly grounded in a historical and environmental context. Experts will be disappointed by the hit-and-miss nature of many of the

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sources that the authors do cite, with major works in the field replaced by ones that are obscure or out-of-date. Overall, this work would benefit from a more comprehensive grappling with the voluminous literature on resource exploitation in the West. Perhaps of most concern is the way that a book that claims to deconstruct binary understandings of the environment ends up deploying just such a binary understanding of Native Americans. In their reading of Smoke Signals, the authors rather uncritically accept that Natives have a special, sustainable attitude toward the environment. This view fits comfortably with their goal of trying to present an alternative to mainstream environmentalism but ignores the literature on the image of the ecological Indian, as well as the anthropological and archaeological literature on native land use and subsistence strategies. Despite these problems, Gunfight will be a valuable resource for anyone looking to explore western films through a new lens. The book also provides a good starting point for further studies seeking to link environmentalism and popular culture in the West. CHRISTOPHER HERBERT Columbia Basin College

Crooked Paths to Allotment:The Fight over Federal Indian Policy after the Civil War. By C. Joseph Genetin-Pilawa. (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2012. xv + 228 pp. Cloth, $39.95.)

IN CROOKED PATHS TO ALLOTMENT, C. Joseph Genetin-Pilawa seeks to disrupt dominant narratives about the ideological homogeneity of late nineteenth-century Indian reformers and the inevitability of the dispossession and destruction of Indian nations under the Dawes Act; further, he links the development of federal Indian policy to the broader trends in the political development of the post-Civil War nation. He does so by telling the stories of two “alternative reformers”—Ely S. Parker, a Tonawanda Seneca leader who served as the commissioner of Indian Affairs under Ulysses S. Grant, and Thomas A. Bland, founder of the National Indian Defense Association (NIDA) and an outspoken critic of forced assimilation. Through Parker and Bland, Genetin-Pilawa examines how alternative reformers sought to seize the opportunities at “constitutive moments” of Indian policymaking after the Civil War. Genetin-Pilawa argues that these moments were points where these alternate reformers had real opportunities to challenge, derail, and redirect the intensification of coercive federal policies

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aimed at forcing Indian assimilation into the national polity. To make this case, Genetin-Pilawa begins with a new look at Parker’s brief career as commissioner of Indian affairs (1869–1871). Parker is depicted as a political innovator and as a stalwart, if inconsistent, protector of indigenous rights who sought to soften and slow down federal efforts to resolve the Indian question through forced assimilation. In this way, Parker looked towards a gradual, voluntary, and humane assimilation process that was in marked contrast to the aggressive plans developed by non-Indian reformers. While these white reformers eventually forced Parker out, Genetin-Pilawa demonstrates that his resistance was a significant twist in the crooked path to allotment. Turning to Bland and the NIDA, Genetin-Pilawa convincingly shows their initial success in challenging the Dawes Act and the assumptions that underlay the work of the act’s supporters, such as the Indian Rights Association (IRA). These groups typically took a condescending view of Indian capabilities and sought to impose their own “civilizing” solutions to the Indian problem. Bland and NIDA, on the other hand, aimed to uphold tribal sovereignty and involved Native people in developing and presenting alternative proposals. In telling this story, Genetin-Pilawa rescues Bland and NIDA from obscurity and illuminates them as an effective, if ultimately unsuccessful, impediment to coercive assimilation; he provides a clear example of how the drive toward allotment could have taken a different, more Indian-centric path. However, Genetin-Pilawa also aims to demonstrate how these Reconstruction-era federal Indian policies “reflected and shaped” the political development of the nation between the Civil War and the Progressive Era—and even foreshadowed some of the ideas, policies, and processes espoused by John Collier during the Indian New Deal of the 1930s. It is a worthwhile goal, yet here the narrative falters. The links between the discussions of Indian policy and the course of national political development are often tenuous. For example, while Genetin-Pilawa shows that both the NIDA and IRA delved into the proper role and author ity of government over its citizens and wards, he provides little evidence that these discussions informed, or were part of, broader national conversations. Taken as a whole, Crooked Paths succeeds admirably in questioning the inevitability of coerced assimilation after the Civil War. It serves as an important reminder that there were viable, potentially less destructive paths not taken in the quest to resolve the “Indian problem.” It less successfully shows how those discussions and ideas were linked to broader themes and activities of American political development, even as it points to the ways that could be done. TIMOTHY M. WRIGHT University of Washington

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Bombast: Spinning Atoms in the Desert. By Michon Mackedon. (Reno: Black Rock Institute, 2010. xv + 234 pp. Cloth, $60.00.)

WHAT CONSTITUTES “SOUND SCIENCE,” and who determines it? Experts? Then who qualifies as an “expert”? Particularly in the field of nuclear testing, officials knew the importance of their language and chose it carefully. The Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) and government officials had a mantle of authority, “expert” opinion, and “sound science,” which allowed them to spin information about activities ranging from the testing of explosives to the description of outcomes—all in an effort to retain public support in the atomic age. Bombast: Spinning Atoms in the Desert delves deeply into this subject. From the beginning, Michon Mackedon posits her central question: how “official rhetoric [was] used to pull the wool over our eyes?” “And so,” she states, “this book is about words” (xiii). Mackedon began the project after serving as vice chairperson of the Nevada Commission on Nuclear Projects. Through this position, she recognized that the Department of Energy has hidden behind “layers of irony” for decades. Thus began her exploration into the politics and nuances of atomic language, as well as its effect on history (xiii). Mackedon relies heavily on secondary sources to support her thesis, but this is appropriate for the style and purpose of the work. Her use of primary sources to illuminate cultural and public response makes the writing provocative and compelling. Unfortunately, Bombast catalogs the nuclear tests in too brief a fashion. In some sections, the author provides little substance other than a test’s code name, the occurrence of fallout or other complications, and the emergence of public concern, followed by the Atomic Energy Commission’s usual response pattern of stressing the importance of “national security, their previous safety record, the role of experts, the soundness of the science employed, and the economic advantages sure to accompany the test,” while all the time assuring of the public’s safety (149). The examination of the creation of code names and the language used to describe atomic testing to the public provides an intriguing angle on the subject. However, in the end, Mackedon does not deviate far from the established historical research. Her goal of examining the nature of rhetoric surrounding atomic testing proves only partially successful. The connection between code name and nuclear event is not always explicitly stated and, in many cases, seems repetitive. Overall, she offers little in terms of new research about site selection, individual tests, or the nuclear waste disposal debate. Even so, this work functions well as an introduction to atomic testing in Nevada.

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Overall, Bombast is quite accessible to the average reader. Mackedon uses an engaging, logical style of writing that holds the attention of her readers. She glides easily from topics such as site choice decisions to the testing period itself, all the way through to present-day waste site determination. The illustrations and side commentary add much to an already entertaining narrative. Each side note addresses the irony of the atomic age, whether in culture, politics, or a combination of the two. While Mackedon is not the first to discuss atomic rhetoric, she does present the most extensive overview of the language used to promote nuclear weapons. She articulates the ironies of the AEC’s choice of humanizing or affectionate names for such a violent technology. Mackedon also addresses the consistent pattern of AEC responses to public concern over the side effects of testing and fallout. This was accomplished through the use of press releases and discussions of “site suitability,” “sound science,” and “expert” opinion, strategies that stretch even to modern times; little has changed in the language used to calm public fear, and, as demonstrated by Mackedon’s research, it doesn’t seem as though it will any time soon. KATHERINE GOOD Virginia Tech

BOOK NOTICES They Call It Home:The Southeastern Utah Collection. By Ken Hochfeld and Gary L. Shumway. (The authors, n.p., 2013. v + 105 pp. Cloth, $45.00.)

Through half-page black-and-white images, this picture profile book provides a charming look at San Juan County and its residents. Ken Hochfeld captured the images in 1972–1973 when he was a student at California State University Fullerton. Hochfeld spent time in the community getting to know the residents for his project and that is evident in the comfortable, natural way they responded to his camera. Years later, Gary L. Shumway, a southeastern Utahn, produced brief biographical or historical notes to accompany some of the photographs. Shumway notes in the introduction that—as a rough, dry place—southeastern Utah was not a desirable spot to settle, but that those who did created a sense of home and community. The goal of the book is to convey that feeling through the daily lives

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of residents at home, work, and celebratory events. The quality of Hochfeld’s images, as well as the candid context of the images supported by Shumway’s text, achieves this goal nicely. Of particular note are the images of the Navajo reservation and some of its people, as well as the Blanding “town picture” Hochfeld took on July 4, 1973, which demonstrates both the diversity and unity of this community. Ruby’s Inn at Bryce Canyon. Images of America Series. By A. Jean Seiler. (Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing, 2013. 127 pp. Paper, $21.99.)

This book focuses on the story of Ruby and Minnie Syrett and their tourist lodge business. An abundance of photographs with captions gives a fascinating look at the couple and their family, the historic lodge and its development, guests at the lodge, and activities around Bryce Canyon. New Perspectives in Mormon Studies: Creating and Crossing Boundaries. Edited by Quincy Newell and Eric F. Mason. (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2013. 248 pp. Paper, $24.95.)

This volume stems from a 2005 National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) seminar, “Joseph Smith and the Origins of Mormonism: Bicentennial Perspectives.” The collection includes nine essays culled from the many generated by the seminar, and it serves as a sampler of the current Mormon Studies movement, heir of the New Mormon History of the 1970s to the 1990s (see chapter 9). Topics range from an approach to Joseph Smith’s political economy to a theological treatise on the enigmatic biblical figure of Elias to an article on development of the Ex-Mormons for Jesus/Saints Alive in Jesus movement. Utah historians will be particularly interested in the essay on BYU’s internationally visible work on various Dead Sea Scrolls projects, the foreword, and the introductory essay on the story of the seminar itself. The authors argue that awarding a NEH seminar to a group proposing to examine the origins of Mormonism signals another milestone in the development of Mormon Studies as a viable field for academic inquiry.

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UTAH STATE HISTORICAL SOCIETY FELLOWS THOMAS G. ALEXANDER JAMES B. ALLEN LEONARD J. ARRINGTON (1917–1999) MAUREEN URSENBACH BEECHER DAVID L. BIGLER FAWN M. BRODIE (1915–1981) JUANITA BROOKS (1898–1989) OLIVE W. BURT (1894–1981) EUGENE E. CAMPBELL (1915–1986) EVERETT L. COOLEY (1917–2006) C. GREGORY CRAMPTON (1911–1995) S. GEORGE ELLSWORTH (1916–1997) MAX J. EVANS AUSTIN E. FIFE (1909–1986) PETER L. GOSS LEROY R. HAFEN (1893–1985) B. CARMON HARDY JOEL JANETSKI A. KARL LARSON (1899–1983) GUSTIVE O. LARSON (1897–1983) WILLIAM P. MACKINNON BRIGHAM D. MADSEN (1914–2010) CAROL CORNWALL MADSEN DEAN L. MAY (1938–2003) DAVID E. MILLER (1909–1978) DALE L. MORGAN (1914–1971) WILLIAM MULDER (1915–2008) PHILIP F. NOTARIANNI FLOYD A. O’NEIL HELEN Z. PAPANIKOLAS (1917–2004) CHARLES S. PETERSON RICHARD W. SADLER GARY L. SHUMWAY MELVIN T. SMITH WALLACE E. STEGNER (1909–1993) WILLIAM A. WILSON

HONORARY LIFE MEMBERS DAVID BIGLER CRAIG FULLER FLORENCE S. JACOBSEN MARLIN K. JENSEN STANFORD J. LAYTON WILLIAM P. MACKINNON JOHN S. MCCORMICK F. ROSS PETERSON RICHARD C. ROBERTS WILLIAM B. SMART MELVIN T. SMITH LINDA THATCHER GARY TOPPING

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CONTENTS 183 IN THIS ISSUE

236 BOOK REVIEWS

244 UTAH IN FOCUS

194 William Hope Harvey

208 A Personal Tribute

ARTICLES 184 This was the place: The Making and Unmaking of Utah By Jared Farmer

220 Conquering the Black Ridge: The Communitarian Road in Pioneer Utah By Todd Compton

and the Ogden Mardi Gras By Val Holley

234 The Palmer and Driggs Collections at Southern Utah University By Janet Seegmiller

to the “Real” Historic Twenty-Fifth Street By Fred Seppi


236 JOHN gary maxwell Robert Newton Baskin and the Making of Modern Utah Reviewed by Thomas G. Alexander

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237 JOHN L. KESSELL Miera y Pacheco: A Renaissance Spaniard in Eighteenth-Century New Mexico Reviewed by Steven K. Madsen

238 Allan Kent Powell, Ed. Nels Anderson’s World War I Diary Reviewed by Douglas D. Alder

239 Robert S. McPherson, Jim Dandy, and sarah e. burak Navajo Tradition, Mormon Life: The Autobiography and Teachings of Jim Dandy Reviewed by Farina King

240 Linda Scarangella Mcnenly Native Performers in Wild West Shows: From Buffalo Bill to Euro Disney Reviewed by Robert S. McPherson

241 Allen V. Parkham and SteveN R. Evans Lewis and Clark among the Nez Perce: Strangers in the Land of the Nimiipuu Reviewed by John D. Barton


IN this issue

Brad Westwood, Editor Holly George, Co-Managing Editor

The Summer 2014 issue of UHQ also marks our first effort to present a mixture of web and print material, with an extended version of Jared Farmer’s essay, “The Making and Unmaking of Utah.” The online version of this piece contains over fifty images that support Farmer’s text and tell stories in a way that print cannot match. Look for web extras at the end of this and other articles. This is a humble beginning to what will become a robust online resource for those who love accessible, thoughtful history. We have reorganized the Quarterly’s office into two equal and complementary sections. Dr. Holly George will remain largely responsible for print content, and Dr. Jedediah S. Rogers—who joined UHQ’s staff as this issue went to press—will pursue

WEB EXTRA: For all of this issue’s web features, visit history.utah.gov/summer–2014. View UHQ’s past graphic designs at history.utah.-gov/past-uhq-designs.

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Though much is changing with UHQ, much will stay the same. We remain especially committed to publishing peer-reviewed articles that explore the breadth and depth of Utah’s past. In addition to the pieces mentioned above, this issue features three articles that offer something of a variation on the theme of the “making of Utah.” In our second article, Val Holley tells the story of William Hope Harvey, a booster determined to draw attention to Ogden by mounting a lavish Mardi Gras celebration there in 1890. The third article carries the history of Ogden forward to the mid-twentieth century, with the reminiscences of Fred Seppi about his childhood experience of watching life on Twenty-Fifth Street Finally, Todd Compton describe the struggles of nineteenthcentury pioneers to build a road through the Black Ridge area of southern Utah.

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With this in mind, during the last year we have reached out to Utah’s leaders, to our readers, and to the broad history-loving community in Utah, and we have decided to make some changes to UHQ. In addition to long research articles—which will always constitute the bulk of the Quarterly—we will periodically publish essays, primary documents, updates from archives around the state, and a historic image spotlight, among other features. In this issue, for instance, Janet Seegmiller describes the valuable Palmer and Driggs collections at Southern Utah University. The issue concludes with a charming photograph from a party held in the midst of the Great Depression. Most noticeably, the Quarterly has a fresh, new graphic design. Throughout its long history, UHQ has gone through several redesigns, the last in 2000; a gallery of representative covers is available online (see below).

digital content. Both sides of the Quarterly will be offered as a seamless reading experience.

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The history of Utah—and the very human desire to understand the past—has kept the staff of Utah Historical Quarterly busy for more than eighty-five years. As the new director of the Division of State History and as the editor of the Quarterly, we see Utah’s history as Tip O’Neill saw politics: it’s all local. In other words, the success of the Quarterly is tied to our ability to understand, listen, and respond to you, the reader, and to the citizens of Utah.

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The Four Corners. —

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The Making and Unmaking of Utah By

Ja r e d

Fa r me r

How many Utahns have driven out of their way to get to a place that’s really no place, the intersection of imaginary lines: Four Corners, the only spot where the boundaries of four U.S. states converge. Here, at the surveyor’s monument, tourists play geographic Twister, placing one foot and one hand in each quadrant. In 2009, the Deseret News raised a minor ruckus by announcing that the marker at Four Corners was 2.5 miles off. Geocachers with GPS devices had supposedly discovered a screw-up of nineteenth-century surveyors. The implication: no four-legged tourist had ever truly straddled the state boundaries. A television news anchor in Denver called it “the geographic shot heard around the West.” In fact, the joke was on the Deseret News. After receiving a pointed rebuttal from the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey, the newspaper printed a retraction with this unintentionally amusing headline: “Four Corners Monument Is Indeed Off Mark—But Not by Distance Reported Earlier and in Opposite Direction.”1 The confusion stemmed from the fact that geocachers had anachronistically used the Greenwich Meridian as their longitudinal reference, though the U.S. did not adopt the Greenwich standard until 1912. The mapmaker in 1875 who first determined the location of Four Corners actually got it right; he was only “off mark” by the subsequent standard of satellite technology. More to the point, surveyors after him validated his work and made the boundary concrete with an official marker. As America’s chief surveyor explained to reporters, “Once a boundary 1 Lynn Arave, “Four Corners Monument is Indeed Off Mark,” Deseret News, April 23, 2009.

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monument has been set and accepted, it generally does define the forever, even if later found to be not located where originally intended.”2

your inner compass.

The issue here was not just academic or journalistic. It had economic ramifications. Tourists won’t come to Four Corners unless they have faith in the rightness of imaginary lines. This matters to Navajo jewelers, hoteliers, and gas station owners. The land where Utah meets three other states belongs to the sovereign Navajo Nation. To refute the Deseret News, the tribe fired off a press release: “Four Corners Monument Still the Legally Recognized Landmark Despite Reports.”3

The making of Utah was related to a larger U.S. project: the national map. And this national map was a product of the so-called Rectangular Survey. If you take the perspective of, say, Dead Horse Point, it seems preposterous that surveyors drew straight lines over jumbled topography to create legal boundaries. Nature abhors squares. But the United States—indeed, even its precursor, the Continental Congress—fell in love with the rationality and mathematical purity of the grid: a nation composed of squares within squares. The basic cartographic building block is the section, or one square mile. Put together thirty-six sequentially numbered sections and you have a township of six miles squared. After the Civil War, U.S. surveyors took this quadrilateral thinking to the next level and mapped out a series of more or less rectangular territories and states adjoining one another. Today, easterners often confuse Wyoming with Colorado, and Utah with Arizona and New Mexico (much like westerners transpose Vermont and New Hampshire). From an East Coast point of view, the big western rectangles seem more or less interchangeable.

This little story of place-making has a big moral: U.S. states such as Utah are examples of the make-believe made real. And like all imagined things, they have histories. “Landscape is history made visible,” wrote the discerning critic J. B. Jackson.4 What did he mean by that? Think about discoverers, conquerors, invaders, colonists, settlers, migrants, pioneers, and other people on the move: all throughout the past, in all four corners of the world, people have encountered unfamiliar spaces and then transformed them, familiarized them, into places. People give meaning to landforms and thereby make landmarks. They place names on mental maps and tell stories about those named and mapped places. They burn, cultivate, build, and otherwise remodel the terrain: they turn land into landscape. This endless process—simultaneously local and global—can never be harmless. Outside of Antarctica and scattered islands, there has been no true terra incognita (land unknown) or terra nullius (land unoccupied) for millennia; no uninhabited, unstoried, unmeaningful terrestrial space. Thus every act of place-making has on some level been an act of remaking, if not displacement—an act of cultural encroachment, even violence. Or, to drive the point home: the making of our Utah involved the unmaking of older Utahs. My purpose in this essay is to get you thinking, through various examples, about place creation and landscape loss; and, along the way, to unsettle your mental geography, and adjust—ever so slightly— 2 Ibid. 3 Navajo Parks and Recreation Department, “Four Corners Monument Still the Legally Recognized Landmark Despite Reports,” April 22, 2009, accessed April 4, 2014, http:// navajonationparks.org/pr/pr_4Cmarker.htm. 4 John Brinckerhoff Jackson, Landscape in Sight: Looking at America (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1997), 10.

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In fact, boundary lines matter. Even though they are invisible on the ground—even though they are social artifices, environmental lies—they create reality. They can engender or reinforce differences, inequalities, and conflicts. Consider the MasonDixon Line, the Radcliffe Line, the Berlin Wall, the DMZ, the West Bank Barrier, or the U.S.-Mexico border. Or, on a local scale, think about the Salt Lakers who cross over to Evanston, Wyoming, for fireworks (or now to Colorado for marijuana), or who drive the opposite direction on I-80 to West Wendover, Nevada, for gambling and other adult entertainments. Some residents of Logan travel from one part of Cache Valley to another—to the Idaho side—for lotto tickets and malt liquor. Three hundred fifty miles to the south, just over the Arizona border, members of the FLDS church still practice polygamy. Colorado City’s location was chosen in part to elude Arizona law enforcement. Because of the awesome barrier of the Grand Canyon, the state government in Phoenix historically found it difficult to enforce antibigamy laws in the Arizona Strip, a swath of land effectively in Utah. Borders are as mutable and arbitrary as they are important. Recall how the map of Europe changed in 1918 and again in 1945 and again in 1989. Look


Borders and boundaries are not the only invisible lines that create reality. There’s also the issue of metageography, a word that refers to large-scale geographic concepts such as continents. Students today learn that the world has seven continents; Wikipedia agrees. But go to the library stacks (or Google Books), and you can readily find learned authorities of yesteryear presenting the plain facts that the continents numbered four—or five, or six. If you follow current events, you see almost daily how the metageographical informs the geopolitical and vice versa. Think about the enduring power of concepts such as “the Third World,” “the Middle East,” and “the West,” to name just three. Utah, like other nations and U.S. states, can be grouped into or divided among larger metageographic regions. Textbooks divide the Beehive State into three physiographic “provinces”: the Great Basin, the Colorado Plateau, and the Rocky Mountains. Like most simplifications, this tripartite division can be misleading. From a geologist’s point of view, the Uintas are the only mountains in the state that rightfully belong with the Rockies because of their shared origin in a wonderfully named tectonic event, the Laramide Orogeny. The borders of Utah also overlap with areas of cultural metageography. For instance, many Ger-

The current regional identification with mountains—our high country bias—replaced an earlier hydrological emphasis. In the nineteenth century, Mormon settlers in Great Salt Lake City (as it was called) emphasized that they were a Great Basin people. Outsiders agreed. Tourists flocked to “America’s Dead Sea”—a national attraction, a natural curiosity, and a sublime landscape worthy of towering artists such as Thomas Moran. Now, by contrast, hydrography hardly matters to outsider or insider conceptions of Utah. Except when the Great Salt Lake threatens the capital with flooding—as it did after the 1982-83 El Niño—modern residents of the Wasatch Front evince little awareness that they live on the edge of a vast interior drainage basin. During the 2002 Olympics, the global media reinforced the symbolic connection between Utahns and mountains. The standard blimp’s-eye-view showed downtown buildings, including the LDS temple, backed by snowy peaks. On NBC, Utah looked much like any other Winter Olympics venue: a generic Alpine or Nordic landscape. For their part, city officials did nothing to turn the camera’s gaze from east to west, from the mountains to the lake. Once a font of curiosity, the city’s namesake had become a reservoir of indifference.

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When contemporary Utahns appeal to a supraregional identity, they tend to speak of the Intermountain West, the Mountain West, or the Rocky Mountain Region. The locution Intermountain West originated around 1900. A coalition of boosters, LDS and non-Mormon alike, promoted Salt Lake City—the “Mormon Metropolis”—as a regional capital. Given that Las Vegas was barely a cow town, and Boise not much more, these hopeful Salt Lakers had a point. In the same era, Spokane, Washington, billed itself as the hub of a rival “Inland Empire.” With the coming of freeways and airports, these geographic inventions (based on railroad networks) became passé. Today, the best-known Inland Empire (or “I.E.”) is in Southern California. The preferred metageographical container for Utah has become Rocky Mountain.

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man tourists come to Monument Valley on the Navajo Nation to experience the “Indian Country” of the Southwest, of which Utah’s largest county, San Juan, is one small part. Other tourists come to Salt Lake City to see something that seems equally exotic: “Mormon Country.” Geographers call it the Mormon Culture Region, which, for them, includes southeastern Idaho, southwestern Wyoming, southeastern Nevada, and the valley of the Little Colorado in Arizona.

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at Africa before and after decolonization. Compared to Africa, the map of North America has been quite stable for over a century. But go back to the nineteenth century, and you see the U.S. national map in a constant state of flux, as the republic gained new lands and states through purchases, wars, treaties, and referenda. Prior to the western states came the western territories. For example, the original Oregon Territory included all of present-day Washington State as well as Oregon. Mormon settlers, newly ensconced in their Great Basin headquarters, proposed a state called Deseret that would have stretched from the Sierra to the Rockies. Even though Congress spurned that proposal, it created a Utah Territory much larger than today’s state. During the long probationary period that ended only after the LDS church promised to give up polygamy, Congress repeatedly sawed off chunks of Utah, awarding them to Nevada and later to Nebraska and Colorado; it even entertained the idea of shrinking Utah to a narrow strip or dividing Salt Lake City right down the middle. Thus the current semirectangular shape of Utah was the result of happenstance and politics as well as the grid. It had nothing to do with nature.

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Salt Lakers are Wasatch people, but it wasn’t always so. The term Wasatch Front arose from the glossaries of geologists, and it took time to catch on. It didn’t become the standard descriptor for the state’s main population corridor until the last quarter of the twentieth century, when I-15 tied together instant communities even as it disrupted historic community centers. Before the interstate, one had to travel US-89 (that is, State Street) through every small downtown. As recently as the 1970s, it took a long time to get from Salt Lake City to Provo, and Point of the Mountain felt like a true divide. The state prison, surrounded by horse pastures, seemed oddly rural, even remote. Today, of course, subdivisions line the freeway from Santaquin to Brigham City, two towns once known for their fruit orchards. The Wasatch Front has become Utah’s equivalent to Colorado’s Front Range, where development along I-25 is creating a suburban megalopolis. Someday Tooele and Cedar valleys—maybe even Cache Valley—may merit inclusion in the greater metropolitan area. Residents of the Wasatch Front are united primarily by dependence on I-15, secondarily by earthquake hazards, lake-effect snowfalls, and world-class inversion. In addition to the Wasatch Front, Utah contains various other large-scale topographical subregions, some of which also function as social subregions. Consider the Uintah Basin, Emery County’s Castle Valley, Sanpete Valley, Sevier Valley, or Dixie. In Utah Valley, the coinage “Silicon Slopes,” invented by Google in 2013 upon announcing that Provo would be the third city in the nation to receive a Google Fiber network, has been picked up eagerly by business leaders to replace a moribund branding initiative from the 1990s: “Software Valley.” At the scale just below the state, Utahns resort to vague descriptors based on cardinal directions: the west desert, northern Utah, eastern Utah, southeastern Utah. The popular phrase “southern Utah” is particularly elastic. Today, it often serves as a metonym for red rock or slickrock. Moab seems like classic southern Utah, whereas Beaver, located farther south, does not. Since the 1960s the Utah Travel Council has valiantly tried to create touristic subregions by lumping adjacent counties into groups: Color Country, Panoramaland, Dinosaurland, and so on. These names have never really stuck. A few evoke heritage, such as Bridgerland, Golden Spike Empire, and Mormon Country (since renamed Great Salt Lake Country), but the majority call attention to Utah’s abundant and seemingly timeless natural attractions.

Surprisingly, natural attractions can have very short cultural lifespans. In the nineteenth century, northern Utah’s lionized sights included Echo Canyon, Devils Slide, and Black Rock. Relatively few people care about these places today. Or consider Castle Gate, which once consisted of two pillars on either side of the canyon of the Price River. For late nineteenth-century railroad tourists traveling west from Colorado, this “natural wonder” marked the entry into the real Utah. Alfred Lambourne, Utah’s first noted landscape painter, made Castle Gate his subject, and countless photographers sold collectible views. By 1966 the rock formation had fallen so far in stature that the Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT), without qualms, dynamited half of it to make room for a wider highway. Over the first half of the twentieth century, as cars replaced trains as the primary form of transportation, the geography of Utah tourism changed. As of 1900, the leading attractions were built landscapes in the north: the resorts of the Great Salt Lake, Salt Lake City’s warm springs, and the Mormon sanctum sanctorum, Temple Square. Sightseers traveled to the “Center of Scenic America” by railroad, most often through Ogden, the undisputed second city. Gradually, interest shifted to the more unsettled landscapes of southern Utah, especially its remarkable sandstone canyons. By 1950 tourists for the most part came by private automobile on newly paved roads. The sites for which Utah is now world-famous—Zion, Bryce, Arches—were commercially undiscovered until the automobile age. The attractiveness of natural attractions depends significantly on media attention. In the mid-twentieth century, Hollywood filmmakers and New York City advertisers recast Monument Valley, an inhabited Navajo landscape, as wild American scenery. More recently, Delicate Arch has become Utah’s most branded landmark besides the Salt Lake Temple. Throughout the first half of the twentieth century, this freestanding arch, which went by various names, was virtually unknown beyond Moab. It was exponentially less renowned than Augusta Bridge, a place few contemporary Utahns could identify (even by its current name, Sipapu), though a heroic canvas of “Utah’s Greatest Scenic Wonder” hangs in the ceremonial Supreme Court chamber at the State Capitol, and a near-identical painting was presented to U.S. president William Howard Taft.5 Only in 1996, Utah’s centennial year, did Delicate 5 H. L. A. Culmer, “Who Shall Name Our Natural Bridges?” Western Monthly 11 (February 1910): 38–41.


Utah’s imperiled heritage includes more than geosites. Practically all of the state’s ancient and historic indigenous ruins and burial grounds have been looted if not obliterated; much of its exquisite Native rock art continues to be vandalized; and most of its settler-era scenes have been bulldozed to make room for tract houses and big-box stores. Only in a few locales, notably Sanpete Valley, can you still see vestiges of the old Mormon landscape that has vanished from the Wasatch Front. Unlike the New England village or the Santa Fe style, Utah’s vernacular architecture was neither codified nor protected by historic preservation law. For every Brigham Young Academy saved, three Coalville tabernacles have been torn down. Furthermore, land trusts and conservation easements have struggled to gain traction in Utah’s terrain of property-rights fundamentalism. Paradoxically, beliefs and practices about sacred space do not necessitate a land ethic. When I consider the contemporary Mormon Culture Region, I’m struck by the disjunction between the cultivated sense of place and the stunted sensibility of place. Utah’s leading real estate developer and its greatest shaper of community standards, the LDS church, does little to promote stewardship and sustainabil-

I don’t mean to suggest that Utah is culturally out of line. Quite the opposite: when it comes to land use and real estate development, Utah long ago joined the mainstream. It is locales and regions like Santa Fe and New England that seem peculiar now. In these United States, where consumer capitalism is the de facto state religion, landscapes are generally more cost effective if they are mass producible, mass destructible, fungible, and irreverential. For better or for worse, the story of our nation’s built environment—especially in the post-WWII era of car-based suburbanization—has been more about disposability than durability. To reinforce my theme of geographic impermanence, I want to share one of my all-time favorite maps. It comes from a book with a charming title: Through the Heart of the Scenic West.6 What’s interesting about this map is its time-boundedness. Only in the 1920s, the onset of the age of auto tourism, could this map have been drawn. How many living Utahns, I wonder, have heard about these map features: Wayne Wonderland? Temple of the Sand Pillars? Today, these places don’t exist as such. As for beautiful Maple Canyon, it hasn’t gone anywhere, but relatively few folks (besides Sanpeters and rock climbers) go there. If you asked the Utah 6 J. Cecil Alter, Through the Heart of the Scenic West (Salt Lake City: Shepherd, 1927).

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For various reasons, then, the traditional, idiosyncratic, somewhat shambolic Mormon landscape—a legacy of local craftwork—is largely doomed. The sturdy buildings made of adobe, brick, and roughhewn native stone; the cockeyed wood-and-wire fences; the rows of upright poplars; the use of cottonwoods as ornamentals; the compact villages with double-wide streets on a grid; the close mixture of church lots and civic lots and vacant lots; the backyard gardens and the outlying fields: this distinctive geographical matrix will soon be a memory or perhaps even a lost memory.

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One of the Beehive State’s most extensive landscape losses has happened virtually without comment: the disfigurement of Pleistocene topography. Landmark shorelines of Lake Bonneville have recently been used as platforms for cookie-cutter suburbs, cheapo McMansions, and prefab temples. Laws protecting antiquities do not as yet extend to geoantiquities. No matter that geologists and geomorphologists rate the benches of the Wasatch Front as world-class features. Grove Karl Gilbert, one of the geological geniuses of the nineteenth century, marveled at the “great embankment” at Point of the Mountain, a magnificent sand and gravel bar. In its own way, it was more impressive—and more evocative of the deep past—than any ziggurat or pyramid. But where geologists saw epic earth poetry, others saw real property. Gravel companies gouged out the point from Point of the Mountain, and advertisers erected billboards upon the wreckage.

ity or to preserve historic landscapes or to nurture place-based aesthetics. Instead the Corporation of the President erects edifices by the numbers—ample parking included—according to centralized master plans. Church architecture has gone from artful stonework built to last through the millennium to a stuccoed simulacrum. In urban Utah, even as the interior sacred space of Mormonism has expanded with the construction of new temples to serve growing populations, the exterior sacred space—farms and fields and orchards, former sites of sacralized work—has contracted to virtual oblivion.

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Arch first appear on license plates. Someday, inevitably, the arch will collapse like New Hampshire’s Old Man of the Mountain. Another one of Utah’s formerly celebrated landscapes, the Bonneville Speedway, may be as fleeting as the Mormon Meteor. The salt flats have shrunk in thickness and area because its sustaining brine flow has been partly captured by a nearby mining operation.

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Utah to bathe in sulfur water and float in salt water. Currently, of course, the Wasatch Front is more about “Life Elevated®” and the “Greatest Snow on Earth®.” Salt Lake City’s once-famous hydropathic resorts—the warm springs and the adjacent Hot Springs Lake—were long ago blotted out by a gravel mine and an oil refinery. In the hearts and minds of twentieth-century Utahns, the lowland Great Basin underwent a great desiccation.

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I’ll illustrate the drying out of Utah’s old waterworld with a short history of the place-name Utah. Place-making is an act of power, and it begins with words. It starts with naming. Today, Utah’s capital and social center is Salt Lake City in Salt Lake Valley. It didn’t use to be that way. It’s no coincidence that Utah Lake occupies the center of Utah Valley, which occupies the center of Utah County, which occupies the near-geographic center of Utah. The names are concentric for a reason. In the nineteenth century and for untold ages before, this lake and its fishery defined a people. This was the place. In its original usage as a toponym, Utah signified the lakeside home of the “Utahs.” Now we would call them Utes; in earlier times, these Utes of Utah Lake were also known as the Fish-Eaters, the Lake People, and the Timpanogos.

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Through the Heart of the Scenic West. —

by j. cecil alter

Travel Council to produce a map like this—well, that’s what they do, isn’t it? But their current maps feature a wildly dissimilar list of landmarks and attractions. It’s even more interesting to imagine an analogous map produced in the nineteenth century. On that map, there would be no Zion National Park, because it didn’t exist. There was a chasm known locally as Little Zion—also Mukuntuweap—but it wouldn’t have merited attention. Neither Bryce Canyon nor Natural Bridges nor Mt. Timpanogos would appear. In the nineteenth century, Utah was recognized as a land of lakes more than canyons or even mountains. People came to northern

In 1850 Congress created something semantically new: Utah Territory. Mormons had previously applied for territorial status under the name of their choosing, Deseret, as engraved in the ceremonial stone donated to the Washington Monument. Congress overruled the choice. Until this moment it had been customary for the national legislature to affirm local usage. More often than not, American settlers called their region by the name of the major river— which usually carried a variant of a Native name—or by its major indigenous group. “Deseret” did not follow that pattern. The name wasn’t Native; it wasn’t even from a language spoken in America. The word came from the Book of Mormon, which Joseph Smith had translated from “Reformed Egyptian,” in which Deseret means honeybee. The word Utah has its own exotic origin in Spanish New Mexico. It derives from Yuta, a Hispanicized version of a Native word—possibly Western Apache for “one that is higher up.” A nineteenth-century authority defined Yutas as “they who live on mountains.” In English-language sources, the word appeared in various spellings—with a first letter e, g, j, or y—before stabilizing as a four-letter word starting with u. Whereas Spaniards used Yutas to refer to all Utes (called Nuche, or “the People,” by them-


Needless to say, by the time of statehood in 1896, Mormons had closeted polygamy and abandoned Deseret—both the political idea and the place-name. The idea became a half-forgotten lost cause, and the name became, in Maurine Whipple’s observation, “merely a colorless term with which to entitle laundries or places of business.”10 After reconciling with the once-despised name Utah, Mormons gave it new significance. In 1923 Levi Edgar Young, the head of the history department at the University of 7 Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Journal of Discourses, vol. 1 (London and Liverpool: Latter-day Saints’ Book Depot, 1855; reprint, Salt Lake City, 1967), 1:167. 8 “The Utah Expedition; Its Causes and Consequences,” Atlantic Monthly 3 (March 1859), 361–75, quote on 368. 9 Quoted in Dale L. Morgan, The State of Deseret (Logan: Utah State University Press, 1987), 113–14. 10 Maurine Whipple, This Is the Place: Utah (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1945), 56.

Having displaced the Utes of Utah Lake, the settlers and especially their progeny went on to create a substitute totem out of a previously unnamed and uncelebrated local landform: Mt. Timpanogos (colloquially shortened to Timp). In the frontier period, nobody saw this massif as a discreet landform. It never showed up on maps. A mountainous space existed, but the mountain-place Timp did not. Thanks to a 1920s civic booster project—including a huge annual community hike—this once “invisible” mountain became conspicuous, beloved, and the site of a national monument. Meanwhile, the invented landmark began to function as a signifier of Indianness thanks to the power and pervasiveness of the “Legend of Timpanogos.” Since the 1920s, people in Utah Valley have repeated and enacted this pseudo-Indian folklore about an Indian princess petrified in profile. In the same era that Timp became visible, Utah Lake became overlooked. Due to overuse and mismanagement, this haven for native cutthroat trout degenerated into a sewage-laced carp pond 11 Levi Edgar Young, The Founding of Utah (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1923), 3–4.

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As for the actual Utahs—the Timpanogos people—they tried for one generation to coexist with Mormon settlers in and around Provo. In practice, hostility supplanted harmony. Settlers and Indians clashed repeatedly at the mouth of the Provo River, the best fishing site at Utah Lake. Ultimately, with the federal government’s blessing, the Mormons in 1865 forced the starving remnants of the Timpanogos to sign a treaty and move to a distant reservation.

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At the national level, “Utah” took on a very different meaning after 1852, when Mormons publicly announced—and stoutly defended—their practice of plural marriage. To easterners, the name now brought one thing to mind: “the Mormon Problem.” The conflict first came to a head in 1857. President Brigham Young told his followers that President James Buchanan had dispatched troops to put down the saints and blustered that “they constituted henceforth a free and independent state, to be known no longer as Utah, but by their own Mormon name of Deseret.”8 His words turned out to be hot wind: in the aftermath of the so-called Utah War, Mormons pursued statehood in the regular way. Multiple Deseret constitutions went to Congress, where they faced intransigent anti-Mormon opposition. In 1872, at yet another constitutional convention, LDS delegates debated the wisdom of retaining Deseret when this name “might be made a basis of prejudice.” Others worried that the name could be confused with “desert.” The delegates stuck with the familiar because it referred to honeybees, whereas the alternative brought to mind a “dirty, insect-infested, grasshopper-eating tribe of Indians.”9 Talk about prejudice.

Utah (and a general authority in the LDS church and a relative of you-know-who), published a chronicle of the state in which he asserted that the Indians “tell us that their forefathers called this the land of ‘Eutaw,’ or ‘High up.’ ‘Utah’ means ‘In the tops of the mountains.’”11 This was a crucial semantic shift. Whereas Yutas had originally been a Hispanicized word referring to Indians who lived in a mountainous region, Utah became an Anglicized word for the region itself. Professor Young’s definition, “in the tops of the mountains,” had scriptural resonance, as in Isaiah 2:2: “And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the Lord’s house shall be established in the top of the mountains.” Moving full circle from Deseret, contemporary Mormons have been known to spread the faith-promoting rumor that Congress unwittingly fulfilled prophecy by imposing the name Utah.

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selves), pioneer Mormons used Utah exclusively to refer to the Fish-Eaters who lived around Utah Lake. The U-word also gained geographic referents for four coextensive entities: a lake, a valley, a Mormon stake, and a territorial county. For instance, in 1853 Brigham Young reported to Salt Lake City residents, “It is only the Utah who have declared war on Utah.”7 Translation: only the Lake Utes have raided the settlements of Utah Valley.

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Thus I circle back to my initial point: the making of our Utah cannot be separated from the unmaking of earlier Utahs—“Utahs” with an s, plural—both a homeland and a people.

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by WWII. In the postwar period, even as the lake became differently polluted and additionally scorned because of a massive steel plant built on its shores, the mountain earned new honors through the designation of a wilderness area and the siting of Robert Redford’s Sundance Resort. Various schools, hospitals, and even an LDS temple were named after Timp. These various geographic changes accompanied—and contributed to—a revision in collective memory. As early as 1950, the historical Timpanogos people in the watery lowlands had been entirely supplanted in collective memory by a fictional Princess Timpanogos in the rocky highlands. In short, the modern sense of place surrounding Timp concealed a double displacement from the past: the literal displacement of native inhabitants and the symbolic displacement of their landmark lake.12

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Principal meridians and baselines, adapted from a Bureau of Land Management map. —

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192 Now for a coda. In your mind, picture a feverish Brigham Young— suffering most likely from a tick-borne infection— looking down from Big Mountain. At the time he reportedly “expressed his full satisfaction in the Appearance of the valley as A resting place for the Saints.”13 His exact words are unknown. Forget the folklore; never mind the monument at This Is the Place Heritage Park; no one on July 24, 1847, recorded the legendary utterance, “This is the right place; drive on!” However, Young did say something similar on July 28 during an evening meeting on the valley floor. As one pioneer wrote in his diary, the camp was called togeather to say whear the City should be built. After a number had spoken on the subject a voat was calld for [and] unanimosiley aggread

12 See Jared Farmer, On Zion’s Mount: Mormons, Indians, and the American Landscape (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2008). 13 Scott G. Kenney, ed., Journal of Wilford Woodruff, 1833–1898 Typescript (Midvale, UT: Signature Books, 1983), 3: 234.

that this was the spot After that Pres Young said tha[t] he knew that this is the place. he knew it as soon as he came in sight of it and he had seen this vearey spot before14 After the vote, Orson Pratt, the closest thing to a scientist in the Pioneer Camp, immediately went to work establishing a so-called initial point for surveying the City of the Saints. While the national map has one master meridian, the historic rectilinear mapping of the trans-Mississippi West occurred unevenly, much like settlement. Initially, many settlement zones were anchored cartographically to temporary locations where a regional east-towest “baseline” intersected a “principal meridian.” In the Far West, these “governing” points of intersection were typically prominences. Had U.S. surveyors gotten their choice, they probably would have picked Mt. Nebo as Utah’s initial point. But Mormons got to choose first because when they arrived, the Great Basin still belonged to Mexico. 14 Levi Jackman, Diary, MS 79, L. Tom Perry Special Collections, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah.


I must tell you, as my terminal point, that the Salt Lake Meridian at Temple Square does not cartographically govern every part of Utah. There is one anomalous sector of the state where the original cadastral maps corresponded to a separate base and meridian. Back in 1875 (the same year Four Corners was marked out), the U.S. government established the Uintah Special Meridian to survey the Uintah Basin reservation where the Lake Utes and other Nuche bands had been relocated. This cartographic project later facilitated the government giveaway of tribal property—a communal disaster for the People. As a result, the greater part of the Uintah Basin within the boundaries of the Uintah and Ouray Reservation now belongs to non-Indians as private land. Having served this dispossessing purpose, the initial point on the reservation was literally buried and paved over in the 1950s when UDOT improved State Route 121. In 2009—the same year, by apt coincidence, as the Four Corners brouhaha—the survey marker was ceremonially exhumed and replaced. Larry Cesspooch, a noted Ute historian, came to the site for the occasion. He offered a prayer with the aid of an eagle feather and a sweet grass braid. “I’ve struggled with what to say today because this

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That’s what landscapes do when we look deeply. They haunt us. They remind us that the past—as inscribed in our present landscape—is a record of tragedy, hope, and considerable irony. Think about the Nuche of 1847, and think about the saints. For all the remarkable successes of the pioneers, they failed in their larger project to redeem the desert and to build a self-contained kingdom for the End Times. Consider that most of the acreage within the old proposed boundaries of Deseret is uninhabited and unredeemed—indeed, much of it wild by the definition of the Wilderness Act—and belongs to the feds. Brigham Young would not be pleased. And he wouldn’t be alone in disappointment. If you scrutinize a rectangular survey map of the Beehive State, you can see how history did not turn out as anyone in the nineteenth century wanted or expected—not for Mormons, not for anti-Mormons, and not for any of the region’s indigenous peoples. Utahns today, not unlike the Yutas in 1847, inhabit a place in a state of fateful transition.

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When “Gentile” surveyors got around to officially mapping Utah Territory in 1855, they accepted and used this established initial point, even though it didn’t make utmost cartographic sense. The U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey later constructed an official meridian base at Temple Square—a little piece of federal property within the holy walls—where it still stands, though most visitors miss seeing it. More noticeable is the unofficial marker (actually a replica of the original) at the outer southeast corner of Temple Square. This waist-high sandstone obelisk doesn’t look impressive compared to the temple or the Church Office Building or the Capitol, but, just as much as those edifices, it represents the making of Utah: a story of settlers (albeit peculiar settlers on a delayed timeline) colonizing Indian land, organizing a territory, dispossessing natives, disposing property, and achieving statehood. Overall, the story couldn’t be more American.

[marker] is not a good thing for us,” Cesspooch said. “It’s like showing you something that’s always going to remind you what happened.”15

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Pratt went ahead and created a “Great Salt Lake Meridian” with the future Temple Square as the initial point. In other words, every plat made by Mormon settlers would have as its reference point a religious site. Every gridded street in Great Salt Lake City would be measured and numbered according to its precise distance from the sacred place where the House of the Lord would rise to welcome to the imminent Second Coming of the Messiah.

193 15 Brandon Loomis, “Bittersweet History Revisited in Eastern Utah,” Salt Lake Tribune, September 18, 2009.

Jared Farmer is an associate professor of history at Stony Brook University and the author of On Zion’s Mount, winner of five book prizes. He delivered a version of this essay as the keynote speech for the Sixty-First Annual Utah State History Conference.

— WEB EXTRA: An extensive audio/visual feature is available at history.utah.gov/farmer.


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Rocky Mountain Carnival program for July 2, 1890. At bottom left is an invitation to purchase lots in William Hope Harvey’s Iliff College Hill addition. —

stewart library special collections


and the Ogden Mardi Gras By

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William Hope Harvey H o lle y

In the late nineteenth century, cities west of the Mississippi River promoted themselves through spectacular festivals in hopes of competing with eastern metropolises for capital and increased population.1 Most took their inspiration from New Orleans’s annual Mardi Gras. The Veiled Prophet of St. Louis, in its inaugural year of 1878, purchased seventeen floats from New Orleans.2 The extinct Seni-Om-Sed and Ak-Sar-Ben carnivals, organized in 1889 and 1895 to keep the Iowa and Nebraska state fairs from leaving Des Moines and Omaha, also imported floats from the Crescent City.3 Beginning in 1883, San Francisco mounted onenight Mardi Gras celebrations annually, while Pueblo, Colorado—notwithstanding its concurrent publicity campaign as the “Pittsburgh of the West”—cloaked itself in New Orleanian garb during its own six-day Mardi Gras in February 1889.4

1 This article is adapted from the author’s September 20, 2012, keynote address at the Sixtieth Annual Utah State History Conference, whose theme was “Encounters: Moments of Change.” 2 “History,” Veiled Prophet Organization, accessed August 12, 2013, http://www. veiledprophet.org/parade/history. 3 Dave Elbert, “Bring Back Seni Om Sed,” Business Record, July 19, 2013, accessed August 12, 2013, http://www.businessrecord.com/Content/Opinion/Opinion/Article/TheElbert-Files--Bring-back-Seni-Om-Sed/168/963/59120; “History,” Knights of Ak-SarBen Foundation, accessed August 12, 2013, http://www.aksarben.org/history2. Omaha held a one-day Mardi Gras in 1886; see Omaha Daily Bee, April 8, 1886. 4 Sacramento Daily Union, March 3, 1883; San Francisco Daily Alta California, February 27, 1884, February 18, 1885, February 15, 1888; Pueblo (CO) Daily Chieftain, February 26, 1889. For “Pittsburgh of the West,” see Pueblo (CO) Daily Chieftain, March 1, 1889; Ogden Standard, August 21, 1889.

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Looking north on Ogden’s Washington Boulevard, circa 1892. This view shows the Reed Hotel with its six-story tower on the right, kitty-corner from the three-story Broom Hotel on the left. —

stewart library special collections

Perhaps the most surprising contender in this cavalcade was Ogden, Utah, which staged a full-fledged Mardi Gras, called the Rocky Mountain Carnival, in July 1890. This occasion fostered some of the most improbable encounters between diverse populations that Utah has ever seen. From New Orleans came a special train bearing Mardi Gras royalty and dignitaries representing cotton exchanges and shipping enterprises. Two hundred cowboys from the open ranges of Utah and Idaho arrived to exhibit their skills at riding, roping, and bronco-busting. Shoshones and Bannocks journeyed from the Fort Hall Indian Reservation at Ross Fork north of Pocatello, Idaho, to perform war dances for the amazement of Rocky Mountain Carnival audiences. This motley group converged on a city brimming with boosterism and delusions of grandeur. In the spring of 1887, Ogden’s advantages as a railroad junction had begun to interest eager capitalists. Nationally, the Interstate Commerce Act of 1887 had just become law, which led to hopes of equalized

railroad rates and the establishment in Ogden of branch houses of national manufacturers.5 Locally, the city had broken ground for a grand Union Station and had improved the streets between its railroad depot and downtown. According to the Ogden Standard, discerning merchants and manufacturers now perceived Ogden as “the coming Chicago” or the “great metropolis of the west.”6 By 1890, Ogden’s new class of Midas-touched men was touting the city as “without a rival between Denver and San Francisco,” destined to achieve a population of three hundred thousand by the turn of the century.7 They concocted the Rocky Mountain Carnival as a high-profile way to advertise Ogden to real estate investors throughout the country. In so doing, they applied to Ogden the well-established formula for western land speculation described by the urban studies scholar Richard C. Wade: proclaiming a rising city’s “matchless situation,” then urging investors “to buy quickly before the price of town lots began to skyrocket.”8 5 Act to Regulate Commerce, U.S. Statutes at Large 24 (1887): 379–87. The Interstate Commerce Act aimed to prevent “unjust discrimination between persons, places, commodities, or particular descriptions of traffic.” U.S. Senate, Select Committee on Interstate Commerce, 49th Cong., 1st sess., Sen. Report 46, Part I, 1886, 215. 6 Ogden Standard, March 22, 1887. 7 San Francisco Call, May 11, July 13, 1890. 8 Richard C. Wade, The Urban Frontier: The Rise of Western Cities, 1790–1830 (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1959), 32.


On Tuesday morning, July 1, 1890, crowds thronged the new Union Station for the arrival of the special train from New Orleans. Twenty-Fifth and Twenty-Fourth streets and Washington Avenue were awash in purple, green, and gold bunting. Horsedrawn vehicles sported the royal colors, and bicycle wheels revolved with kaleidoscopic hues. As the train pulled in, it was a sight to behold: two gilded sphinxes adorned the engine. Murals painted on the cars depicted the tropical splendor of New Orleans—palm trees, exotic fruits—and the mountains of the West.11 Among the royalty and dignitaries on the train were Sylvester Pierce Walmsley, crowned King Rex at the

How was a small city like Ogden, whose population was under fifteen thousand, able to marshal its manpower to bring off a Mardi Gras–sized festivity in just four months? And who in Ogden had the chutzpah to conceive of such an undertaking? The answer lay in the entrepreneurs who had moved to Ogden to get rich. Colonel William Hope Harvey, “by all odds the most picturesque and original character of Ogden’s ‘Golden Age,’” had launched his career as an attorney

9 Val Holley, 25th Street Confidential: Drama, Decadence, and Dissipation along Ogden’s Rowdiest Road (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 2013), 4. The laws were the Edmunds Act, U.S. Statutes at Large 22 (1882): 30–32, and the Edmunds-Tucker Act, U.S. Statutes at Large 24 (1887): 635– 41.

12 Salt Lake Tribune, July 2, 1890; Washington, D.C., Evening Star, May 21, 1887.

10 Ogden Standard, July 1, 1890; Salt Lake Tribune, June 18, 1890. The New York Sun of June 5, 1890, said the Carnival Palace’s dimensions were 314 feet by 136 feet.

14 Accounts of the carnival’s first day appeared in the Ogden Daily Commercial, Ogden Standard, Salt Lake Tribune, and Salt Lake Herald, July 2, 1890.

11 Salt Lake Herald, July 2, 1890; Ogden Standard, July 2, 1890.

15 Ogden Standard, February 27, 1892.

13 Perry Young, The Mystick Krewe; Chronicles of Comus and His Kin (New Orleans: Louisiana Heritage Press, 1969), 178.

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As soon as the New Orleans delegation had disembarked from the train, Frederick J. Kiesel, Ogden’s first Liberal mayor, presented the keys to the city to Captain William Beanham, spokesman and Lord High Chancellor to King Rex of New Orleans. With the Louisiana Rifles in the vanguard, a procession of royalty, military companies, and costumed knights and Arabs marched eastward on Twenty-Fifth Street, with the cowboys bringing up the rear.14 Mayor Kiesel quartered the guests from New Orleans at his mansion and entertained them lavishly all week. A trout breakfast hosted in Ogden Canyon would prove to be one of the best investments Ogden ever made.15

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In the weeks preceding the Mardi Gras, a temporary Carnival Palace went up on Twenty-Fifth Street; it was the size of a football field and was said to have the seating capacity of the Salt Lake Tabernacle.10 At the western end of Twenty-Fifth Street, craftsmen erected a twenty-foot-high Arch of Welcome, under which carnival royalty would parade, expertly painting it to look like granite and festooning it with royal purple, green, and gold. Carpenters transformed Twenty-Fourth Street between Lincoln and Grant Avenues into a tournament field for armored knights on horseback, with bleacher seating. Organizers planned cowboy exhibitions, military drilling competitions, bicycle races, excursions to the Great Salt Lake, a grand parade with costumes from New Orleans, and nightly grand balls, each with a different theme.

New Orleans Mardi Gras four months earlier; Major John Henry Behan, a designer of floats and spectacles; Captain Thomas Pickles, a shipping magnate; Captain William H. Beanham, the commander of the Louisiana Field Artillery; and Kate Bridewell, a singer who would enchant audiences in the Carnival Palace. The celebrated Louisiana Rifles, who had won many national drilling competitions, served as the royal party’s military escort.12 However, the names of the two most important members of the royal party were unknown. They were Rex II, king of the Rocky Mountain Carnival, and his queen, and their faces would be concealed by veils—black for Rex II and pink for his consort—during the entire week, until midnight at the grand masked ball on Friday, July 4. The identity of these mysterious figures was the subject of intense speculation among the public and the press.13

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To the chagrin of its organizers, the Rocky Mountain Carnival was hijacked by conflict between Mormons and non-Mormons, just then at its zenith in Utah. A handful of other circumstances exacerbated this conflict, including recent federal laws that sought to stamp out polygamy through the confiscation of Mormon church property and the disenfranchisement of polygamists; a sizeable influx of non-Mormon voters who had come to Ogden to get rich; and the Mormon People’s Party’s much-lamented defeat in the Ogden and Salt Lake City municipal elections.9 The organizers did not foresee this outcome. They cared primarily about making money and felt that religious wars were a waste of time.

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lured hundreds of real estate and precious metals investors to Colorado. His success in growingColorado’s population prompted the governor to place the state’s military regiments under his command.17

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The same prescience that informed Harvey’s Colorado investments prompted his discernment of Ogden’s potential. By late 1888 he claimed Ogden as his home and said he would move there “as soon as my business in Colorado is settled up.” Already he was saying that Ogden must “control the trade along all the railroads that center there” and “should not let Salt Lake City get ahead of you as a commercial center.” He boasted that he could submit a plan within ninety days for Ogden to build the finest hotel west of Chicago. Harvey insisted that “if your town goes progressive in February [1889]”—in other words, if Ogdenites elected a non-Mormon, Liberal Party city government—“I can bring gentlemen with me there in sixty days representing five million dollars. . . . If you were to take a Denver man’s advice and follow it, he could tell you how to down Salt Lake City within two years.”18

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Although William Harvey lived in Ogden less than five years, he made great contributions to its development. —

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in West Virginia and Ohio.16 He later owned and operated a silver mine in Ouray, Colorado, before going into real estate development in Denver and Pueblo. His title, colonel, was ironic, since Harvey had never seen military service. Through his natural flair for publicity, he was said to have 16 Olin A. Kennedy’s characterization of Harvey, from the Ogden Standard-Examiner of May 6, 1931, was later used without attribution in Works Projects Administration for the State of Utah, Utah: A Guide to the State (New York: Hastings House, 1941), 212. Kennedy’s article was the first in a nine-part series of reminiscences about Harvey and the carnival.

Addressing a Liberal Party rally preceding Ogden’s February 1889 municipal elections, Harvey said, “One hundred thousand dollars in advertising would not do as much good as news flashing over the wires . . . that Ogden is [now] a Gentile town.” Soon after his January 1890 election to the Ogden Chamber of Commerce’s board of directors, he proposed an advertising campaign comparing Springfield and Chicago, Lincoln and Omaha, Colorado City and Denver, and Salt Lake City and Ogden. The first-named town in each pair, he said, represented the old, noncompetitive town, while the second stood for the new, progressive, active city.19 Accustomed as Ogden soon grew to Harvey’s penchant for ballyhoo, his scheme for a Mardi Gras, kept tightly under wraps until it was ready, came like a surprise attack. Harvey appeared in the Ogden mayor’s office on February 25, 1890, and presented an epistle from His Majesty Rex of the Royal Host of New Orleans that approved “with satisfaction” of the steady growth of the nation’s population west of the Mississippi and desired to establish “a second seat of empire . . . [and] the City of Ogden finds first favor with my royal consort.” Kiesel was in New York, but deputy mayor Watson N. Shilling 17 Lois Snelling, “Coin Harvey of Monte Ne,” typescript, Special Collections, Pueblo City-County Library, Pueblo, Colorado. 18 Ogden Standard, November 29, 1888. 19 Ogden Standard, February 10, 1889, February 26, 1890.


To manage the Rocky Mountain Carnival’s daunting logistics, Harvey organized a counterpart to New Orleans’s Royal Host, christening it the Order of Monte Cristo. The journalist, historian, and Monte Cristo man Olin A. Kennedy said that the order’s members—at least two-thirds of whom had not lived in Ogden more than one year—were real estate dealers, businessmen, and newsmen. Aside from paying dues to support the carnival, members were expected to rehearse and drill as costumed Arabs, medieval knights, or cowboys—or if not, to assist in 20 Ogden Standard, February 26, 1890. 21 Salt Lake Tribune, June 29, 1890. This account dated Harvey’s in-person appeal to the Rex Organization in March, but for an official edict to be on the Ogden mayor’s desk on February 25, Harvey had to have been in New Orleans earlier, possibly during Mardi Gras, which began February 17. Harvey knew New Orleans from visiting his uncle, the canal builder Joseph Hale Harvey, who lived there. Allyn Lord, email message to author, September 26, 2012.

Boosters of western land booms “always inclined toward enthusiastic exaggeration and self-interested promotion,” writes the historian William Cronon, and perhaps Ogden’s most extreme example of this was Clifton E. Mayne, marshal of the Monte Cristos.28 According to Omaha Illustrated, Mayne had “caught the first high flood of the Omaha boom” in 1883 and was “more closely identified with the wonderful growth and prosperity of Omaha” than anyone else.29 But by 1888, Mayne had lost everything and moved to San Francisco. Early in 1890 he established the C. E. Mayne Company, a real estate brokerage in Ogden, and with Harvey was elected to the Chamber of Commerce board. Mayne was a con artist and scoundrel. The single most 24 Salt Lake Herald, April 26, 1890; Ogden Standard, May 9, 1890; Ogden Standard-Examiner, May 6, 7, 1931. 25 Ogden Standard, May 9, 1890; Salt Lake Herald, June 22, 1890. Levy’s role in the Pueblo Mardi Gras is detailed in Pueblo (CO) Daily Chieftain, February 15, 23, 1889; Aspen Weekly Times, February 16, 1889. Young, Mystick Krewe, 177, implies that Major John Henry Behan of New Orleans was the Rocky Mountain Carnival’s designer, but Behan’s job in Ogden was chief of protocol. Levy clearly designed the Ogden show. 26 Levy, whose “major” signified not military rank but prowess in marching bands, designed San Francisco’s February 1884 Mardi Gras. Although he traveled to New Orleans to buy properties and get ideas, his 1884 event did not have the Royal Host’s charter or consultation. Los Angeles Herald, January 10, 1884; San Francisco Daily Alta California, January 24, February 27, 1884; Salt Lake Herald, July 23, 1890. 27 Stephen Hales, the present-day archivist of the Rex Organization (and a native Ogdenite), writes, “The only other instance I have found where Rex Royalty and officials made, or offered to make, a trip to the site of [a] Carnival transplant was the fizzled effort in Saratoga Springs, New York.” Email message to author, March 11, 2012.

22 Pueblo (CO) Daily Chieftain, February 26, March 1, 1889; Leadville (CO) Evening Democrat, February 26, 1889.

28 William Cronon, Nature’s Metropolis: Chicago and the Great West (New York: W. W. Norton, 1991), 34.

23 Ogden Standard, July 22, 1890; Harvey to Clifton E. Mayne, March 30, 1890, reprinted in Ogden Daily Commercial, April 6, 1890 (quotations).

29 Alfred Rasmus Sorensen, Omaha Illustrated: A History of the Pioneer Period and the Omaha of Today (Omaha: D. C. Dunbar, 1888), 86–87.

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Late in March 1890, Harvey, his older brother Robert Smith Harvey (“the only man competent to fill my place [after I am back in Ogden]”), and his Denver stenographer invaded New Orleans to establish an advertising bureau. New Orleans, Harvey felt, “had an effect in claiming attention that would [be] impossible [in] Ogden.” Over the next three months the bureau sent out 70,000 five-color lithographic sheets; 20,000 letters signed by the Rex Order, with gold leaf seal; and 11,000 marked copies of New Orleans newspaper articles on the carnival to all newspapers, governors, congressmen, mayors, chambers of commerce, and railroad passenger agents in the United States. “I will set substantially everybody in the United States to talking about Ogden and Utah,” Harvey confidently asserted.23

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To construct the parade’s floats and supervise decoration of the Arch of Welcome and Carnival Palace, Harvey recruited “Major” David L. Levy of San Francisco, whom he had known as the designer of Pueblo’s Mardi Gras.25 Harvey and Levy account for the similarities in program and design between Ogden and Pueblo celebrations, but the most notable difference was Pueblo’s apparent lack of any New Orleanian authorization or presence.26 Ogden’s Rocky Mountain Carnival was the only known “transplant” Mardi Gras to win the enthusiastic endorsement and participation of the Royal Host.27

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The Salt Lake Tribune later reported that Harvey’s “proposition . . . was not viewed favorably at first [in New Orleans] and it was with some difficulty that he secured the favor of a special meeting of the royal council to consider his plans.”21 The Tribune’s account may not be accurate. The Utah press never seemed aware that Harvey already had considerable experience as an organizer of the Pueblo, Colorado, Mardi Gras in 1889 and that he was the ideal advocate for a Rex franchise.22

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at once accepted King Rex’s proposal for “our grand fête and carnival festivities.”20

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outrageous scheme of his career, which occurred five years after the Rocky Mountain Carnival, stemmed from his knowledge of a deceased Colorado mining magnate whose estranged young daughters, heiresses to a $15 million estate, had vanished. Mayne advertised in newspapers for two girls who might pass as the missing daughters. He connived to become legal guardian of the winning “sisters” and to claim the magnate’s estate on their behalf. However, Mayne’s political enemies in San Francisco derailed the scheme through a trumped-up rape charge, sending Mayne to prison.30 Ogdenites, however, viewed Mayne’s 1890 maneuverings as merely another aspect of their city’s real estate boom. In the spring of 1890, high-ranking Monte Cristos, designated as ministers plenipotentiary, fanned out across the country to advertise the Rocky Mountain Carnival. Harvey’s target was Chicago. Albert Richardson, who had speculated in Kansas City real estate before he discovered Ogden, traveled to New York. Richardson told the New York Sun that Ogden had no Mormon–Gentile conflict and that the “speculative fever had found no habitation there,” assertions that were untrue. Flattering New York’s high self-regard, Richardson said Ogden’s queen would be selected from the legendary List of Four Hundred, the compendium of New York society, and implied that he was in the city to escort “Her Majesty” to Utah. Further, said Richardson, he wanted Ward McAllister, ringmaster of New York’s grandest social occasions, “to take charge of [Ogden’s grand masked] ball and make it . . . an example of taste and order and perfection.”31 Meanwhile, Clifton Mayne returned to Omaha, the scene of his first fortune, where he was still considered the man who had made it a metropolis. In telling the Omaha press that Ogden was absolutely in the throes of a boom, he contradicted Albert Richardson, but for once was telling the truth. However, he falsely claimed that Ogden’s population had increased by five thousand in the past three months and boasted of schemes to establish stockyards, to mine iron and granite within four miles of the city, and to build a power dam on the Ogden River to electrify the city’s streetcar system.32 While Mayne was in Omaha, his company in San Francisco ran daily ads proclaiming, “Fortunes may be made 30 San Francisco Call, September 21, 1908. Mayne was freed from prison after his accuser confessed that her testimony had been false and part of a conspiracy. See Los Angeles Herald, October 26, 1897. 31 New York Sun, June 5, 1890. 32 Omaha Daily Bee, May 13, 1890.

by investing in Ogden real estate now!”33 Despite Harvey’s good intentions, it was impossible to stage the Rocky Mountain Carnival in a vacuum devoid of the Mormon–Gentile conflict, which had escalated after the Liberal Party’s victory in February 1889. Ogden’s newly installed city council soon appropriated the city block on which the Mormon tabernacle sat “for use as a public square,” believing the church had never secured legal title.34 During a stormy Ogden school district meeting at the tabernacle in July 1889, Mormons nominated one chairman and non-Mormons nominated another. Olin A. Kennedy, who was there, recalled that both chairmen repeatedly ruled each other out of order, fistfights ensued, Mormons were shouted down as “mossbacks,” and Gentiles were jeered as “carpetbaggers.”35 An 1884 Mormon–Gentile donnybrook in Salt Lake City would also haunt the carnival. The editor of the Deseret News, John Q. Cannon, a tall man who weighed two hundred pounds, assaulted a bantam-weight Salt Lake Tribune reporter, Joseph Lippman, who had written that Cannon had secretly taken a plural wife.36 Henceforth, the Tribune considered Cannon persona non grata. Six years later, Cannon, by then associate editor of the Ogden Standard, ran the paper while its editor, his half-brother Frank Cannon, negotiated in Washington, D.C., to stymie a pair of Congressional bills that would disenfranchise all members of the Mormon church.37 Just before the carnival, a feud of daily mutual insults erupted between John Q. Cannon (who was a Monte Cristo) and the Tribune’s Ogden correspondent. Cannon berated the Tribune cor33 San Francisco Call, May 11, 24, 25, 27, 31, 1890. 34 Ogden City Council, Minute Book H, March 1, 1889, p. 29, Ogden City Recorder’s Office. Five years later the city council returned Tabernacle Square to the Mormon church. See Ogden Standard, December 21, 1893. 35 The school district meeting was reported in the Ogden Standard, July 9, 1889, and remembered by Kennedy in the same newspaper, July 12, 1919. 36 Kenneth L. Cannon II, “The Tragic Matter of Louie Wells and John Q. Cannon,” Journal of Mormon History 35, no. 2 (Spring 2009): 151–55. 37 Michael Harold Paulos, “Opposing the ‘High Ecclesiasts at Washington’: Frank J. Cannon’s Editorial Fusillades during the Reed Smoot Hearings, 1903–07,” Journal of Mormon History 37, no. 9 (Fall 2011). For an account of Frank Cannon’s work against the Cullom and Struble bills (S. 3480 and H.R. 9265, 51st Cong., 1st sess., 1890), see Robert Newton Baskin, Reminiscences of Early Utah (Salt Lake City: Tribune-Reporter Printing, 1914), 183–86. Frank Cannon returned to Ogden on June 10 and, on July 2, delivered the chivalric charge to knights competing in the carnival’s tilting tournament. See Ogden Standard, June 11, 1890; Ogden Daily Commercial, July 3, 1890.


respondent for writing “rot manufactured to fill space” and “dirty and malicious flings.” The Tribune man called Cannon “the imbecile brother.”38

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On the evening of July 1, a sumptuous king’s banquet in the Carnival Palace featured buffalo, bear steaks, and choice champagne. The hides of barbequed animals were garishly displayed on butcher blocks to evoke an Arthurian feasting hall.43 Mayor Kiesel was the toastmaster, and one of his many tributes was to the Mormon pioneers.44 According to Kennedy, everyone sprang to their feet, cheering and clinking their wine glasses. Someone stood on a chair and proposed “three cheers for the Utah pioneers” and someone else added “and Brigham Young!” The cheers resounded, and the Louisiana guests gave the “old rebel yell,” the blood-curdling whoop of Confederate soldiers.

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While most Utah newspapers bent over backwards to boost the carnival, the sentiment was not unanimous. In the Logan Journal, a letter signed “Mormon Elder” condemned the character of cowboys and Ogden establishments most likely to benefit from the presence of cowboys. Most of the crowds in attendance at the carnival, said the writer, would be “ignorant, desperate, and wicked.”39 The Deseret News advised its readers to shun the carnival, calling it “senseless frivolity,” “sickening to common sense,” and a “heterogenous heap of rubbish.”40 While the Deseret News did cover the goings-on, it emphasized the discomfort of the heat and inconvenience.41 It deplored the carnival’s “direct variance with the spirit of the Gospel” and its “aspect more vile than buffoonery.”42

201 Two years after John Q. Cannon’s assault on the Salt Lake Tribune’s Joseph Lippman, the Tribune called Cannon (seated left) “reporter smasher.” —

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Years later, Kennedy recalled that the old rebel yell angered Union Army veterans inside the Carnival Palace. Nor did cheers for Brigham Young amuse non-Mormons. Standing with the press behind the king’s throne was Samuel M. Preshaw, judge of the

Ogden police court. Judge Preshaw was a Methodist and teetotaler.45 He was no fan of Brigham Young.

38 Ogden Standard, June 19, 1890; Salt Lake Tribune, June 20, 1890. Monte Cristo membership listed in Ogden Standard, May 9, 1890.

The judge muttered to Kennedy, “Look at ‘em! Sitting there guzzling and swilling wine! And

39 Logan (UT) Journal, July 2, 1890. As if to rebut the Logan Journal’s blast, the Salt Lake Tribune noted on July 6, 1890, that the cowboys “have vindicated the words of their friends, who told the carnival committee that they could depend on the cowboys as natural gentlemen to behave themselves.” 40 Deseret Evening News, June 7, July 5, 1890. 41 Deseret Evening News, July 1, 1890, cited in Logan Journal, July 2, 1890. 42 Deseret Evening News, June 7, 1890. 43 Ogden Daily Commercial, July 2, 1890. 44 Ogden Standard, July 2, 1890; Ogden Daily Commercial, July 2, 1890.

45 Ogden Standard (semi-weekly ed.), March 6, 1889; Ogden Standard-Examiner, May 11, 1931. Kennedy’s recollection that Preshaw “had served four years in the Union army during the Civil War and had heard the rebel yell at close quarters” cannot be verified and appears to be inaccurate. Preshaw’s only known service was in the short-lived, “bloodless” Colorado Cavalry, Third Regiment, Company A. Find a Grave, accessed June 4, 2013, http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/ fg.cgi?page=pv&GRid=75524018&PIpi=78310394. Ogden’s Liberals, however, included Union Army veterans such as General Robert H. G. Minty, whose Rocky Mountain Carnival role was chief of staff to the commander of King Rex II’s forces.


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cheering for Brigham Young. The mayor and everybody else. It’s a disgrace!” A special police force volunteer, who had innocently yelled for Young, stood behind Preshaw. Glaring at the volunteer, the judge sneered, “Young man, ain’t you ashamed of yourself to stand there wearing the badge of Ogden City and cheering for Brigham Young?” The volunteer stammered that his pioneer heritage gave him the right to lionize Utah’s earliest governor. “Very well, then,” replied Preshaw. “You just come around to the police court tomorrow morning at ten o’clock and turn in that [badge].”46 Such petulance would morph into an epidemic by week’s end and hijack the Rocky Mountain Carnival.

July 4 show-stopper to compete with the Mardi Gras, tried brazenly to steal the tribal show away.51 The Salt Lake Herald’s version alleged the opposite: that the capital city first announced the Indians as its main Independence Day event, after which Ogden swooped in and preempted it.52 Indian agent Fisher had apparently written the Salt Lake City real estate exchange on July 8 that it could count on the Fort Hall tribes’ appearance. Five days later, Fisher sent another letter saying, “Since writing you . . . I have been called on by one of the promoters of the Ogden carnival and have made arrangements to visit their city during the celebration with Indians from the reservation.”53

The official program for Wednesday, July 2, featured cowboy lasso and horsemanship exhibitions, a bicycle race, the royal tournament (in which knights at full gallop “tilted,” or caught two-inch iron rings on a long spear), and the tournament ball to honor victorious knights. But an unheralded event turned into one of the day’s major attractions: the arrival, by Union Pacific train, of some 160 Bannocks and Shoshones from Idaho. These tribes, said the Salt Lake Herald, traveled the country giving war dance exhibitions.47 Accompanied by interpreters, the tribal police chief, and the Indian agent S. G. Fisher, they wore brightly colored shawls and blankets, and some had painted their faces. As they walked the five blocks from the station to the campground reserved for them at Twenty-Eighth Street and Grant Avenue, they “chanted a doleful dirge” and were followed by a large and curious crowd.48 That evening the Indians were escorted to the tournament ball, quietly conducted through the Carnival Palace amidst the stares of waltzing couples, and presented to the royal households of New Orleans and Ogden upon their thrones.49 Earlier that day, Kiesel issued a proclamation not to sell or share liquor or intoxicating substances to the Indians under penalty of U.S. law.50

Conceding that “Ogden had outwitted her neighbor,” the Salt Lake Herald lamented that “Salt Lake’s diplomacy is of the two-penny postage stamp, while little Ogden utilizes the telegraph and ministers plenipotentiary.”54 The secret to trumping Salt Lake City, however, may have been cash. Arthur B. Hayes, editor of the Ogden Daily Commercial, later told a Pennsylvania reporter that the Indians “demanded five thousand dollars for their work . . . and they got it.”55

The inspiration to bring the Shoshones and Bannocks to the Rocky Mountain Carnival was not attributed, but Ogden and Salt Lake City had competed fiercely for an appearance by the tribes. The Ogden Standard said the idea originated in Ogden, but Salt Lake City, needing a

As an entr’acte between Thursday night’s drilling competition and the military ball, the Shoshones and Bannocks assembled in the Carnival Palace to give their much-anticipated war dance for ten thousand spectators. According to Salt Lake City newspapers—and reflecting the language of the era—the older men and women beat tom-toms, while the young men, “clad in the light of the moon and fancy rings of paint,” formed a long line, emitting a “hum and drone and falsetto shout” and swaying to and fro. Suddenly, as if forgetting their lines, they sat down on the floor in silence. Harvey, on his feet at once, told the audience the dancers were miffed at its failure to throw money. An interpreter promised the performers belated manifestations of audience approval.56

51 Ogden Standard, July 4, 1890, cited in Deseret Evening News, July 5, 1890. 52 Salt Lake Herald, June 17, 1890.

46 Ogden Standard-Examiner, May 11, 1931.

53 Ibid.

47 Salt Lake Herald, June 11, 1890.

54 Ibid.

48 Ogden Daily Commercial, July 3, 1890; Ogden Standard, July 3, 1890. 49 Ogden Daily Commercial, July 3, 1890.

55 Pittsburg Dispatch, November 30, 1890. Hayes was later the U.S. solicitor of internal revenue; see Salt Lake Tribune, March 17, 1903.

50 Salt Lake Tribune, July 4, 1890.

56 Salt Lake Herald, July 4, 1890; Salt Lake Tribune, July 6, 1890.


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From the outset, journalists and others had speculated about the identities of Rex II and his queen. Some newspapers insisted the queen was Nellie Bly—the New York World reporter famous for her recent trip around the world in less than eighty days—or Mrs. James G. Blaine Jr., the daughter-in-law of the U.S. Secretary of State.58 The morning of the grand masked ball, the Salt Lake Herald published its final guess, which would 57 Salt Lake Tribune, July 6, 1890; Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper, August 2, 1890. 58 Salt Lake Herald, June 22, 1890; Salt Lake Tribune, June 26, 1890; Deseret Evening News, July 1, 1890.

Two versions exist of what happened next, both seemingly credible. Olin A. Kennedy reported that the non-Mormon newspapers complained bitterly of the coronation of the Ogden Standard’s John Q. Cannon. “Here we’ve been boosting this [blessed] carnival from the very first,” they reasoned, “giving whole pages of publicity and sending out thousands of copies free, only to see it turned into an advertising stunt for the Standard, our hardest competitor. There’ll be merry hell in the morning if Colonel Harvey persists in putting that over.” They warned that costumed companies of Arabs would march into the grand masked ball and throw their spears and robes in a pile in front of the throne and that cowboys would gallop into the palace and shoot out the lights. Kennedy, a personal friend of Harvey, was pressured by his fellow journalists to break the news of the imminent mutiny. Harvey protested, “You don’t think that selecting a prominent Mormon to be king 59 Salt Lake Herald, July 4, 1890. 60 The Andersons had lived in Kansas City before moving to Ogden that year; see Ogden Standard-Examiner, May 8, 1931.

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The drummers resumed beating, surrounded by women, children, and dogs. Now the young men went into “spasmodic” bodily contortions under an incessant shower of Liberty Head nickels. They imitated grizzly bears, coyotes, bulls, ponies, pigeons, and chickens. “Each warrior represented a different character,” reported Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper. “It was like a great character play.” The audience roared its approval of the “aboriginal tactics.” When the applause died down, the chiefs were presented at Rex II’s throne and decorated with royal medals, in appreciation, they were told, for saving many white men’s lives.57

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prove correct. The young son of the Chamber of Commerce president, Alfred Nelson, with whom Rex II was lodging, had recognized the king’s voice and spilled the beans.59 Rex II was John Q. Cannon, the Mormon associate editor of the Ogden Standard and the nemesis of the Salt Lake Tribune, and the queen was no New York diva but Ogden’s own Minerva Anderson, the daughter of the owner of the Harrisville Brick Yard.60 However, the carnival officials could only maintain silence.

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Fort Hall Indians perform a traditional dance. —

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Mardi Gras in New Orleans, Louisiana, circa 1900. —

his assigned duties in assisting the Order of Monte Cristo in presenting the carnival.62

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would be a graceful and conciliatory thing to do? In other words, has the time come to put an end to this senseless antagonism between Mormons and Gentiles in this city and Utah?” However, he also asked Kennedy to tell the newsmen they would not be disappointed.61 The other version, reported decades later by Sylvester Pierce Walmsley, attributed the rebellion not to the non-Mormon press but to an unspecified committee of non-Mormons who showed up at Kiesel’s home and demanded an audience with Walmsley, the reigning Rex of New Orleans. The committee made the same complaints as those reported by Kennedy, but its threat was far more serious: regicide. Any Mormon unmasked as king, the ad hoc committee informed Walmsley, would be shot dead. Walmsley said he could do nothing beyond 61 Ogden Standard Examiner, May 12, 1931.

While the Monte Cristos and the Royal Host of New Orleans scrambled to resolve the eleventh-hour palace intrigue, costumed revelers, brass bands, railroad men, Shoshones, Bannocks, cowboy brigades, and five elaborate floats formed in procession for the evening’s parade, or “great street pageant,” south along Washington Avenue. Stateof-the-art pyrotechnics lit up the street and skies in red and blue. The five floats, interspersed between marching courtiers and groups on horseback, featured King Rex II on his throne, the queen on her throne, tournament knights, the king of the cowboys, miners, and Indians. From Kennedy’s perspective, the audience furnished entertainment 62 Young, Mystick Krewe, 184–85. Abraham H. Cannon’s diary of July 8, 1890, records a telephone call from his half-brother Frank Cannon, which communicated “that John Q. was Rex II in the recent Mardi Gras Carnival until the night of the unmasking, when Gov. Thomas and O. W. Powers were so chagrined at the fact that they had sworn allegiance to a Cannon that a disturbance was threatened, and to avoid trouble he withdrew and Behan of Louisiana was substituted.” Abraham H. Cannon diaries, 1879–1895, July 8, 1890, MSS 62, L. Tom Perry Special Collections, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah. My thanks to Kenneth L. Cannon II for this information.


The gorgeous and grotesque costumes of 2,200 masked dancers provided a spectacle not previously beheld in Utah. Giraffes, zebras, unicorns, lobsters, and grasshoppers; Harlequins, Punchinellos, Helen of Troy, Satan, and Siamese twins all tripped the light fantastic. One standout was Josephine, empress of France, in a décolleté black gown trimmed in roses and diamonds, displaying a lovely pair of shoulders. Hours later, when everyone unmasked, Josephine proved to be Mr. Will Stoddard of Park City, escorted by Mr. T. W. Clayton.66 Walmsley’s account of the ball relates that three solemn-faced men, not costumed but in evening dress, appeared at the foot of King Rex II’s throne during the ball, ready to annihilate any Mormon king. What these three men never realized, Walmsley said, was that a detail of the Louisiana Rifles had them covered with loaded guns from the minute they appeared, ready to drop them in their tracks if they made any false move.67 At midnight Harvey led His Majesty, Rex II, to the edge of the stage, unveiling Major John Henry Behan, the New Orleans carnival designer who had

To Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper, a national periodical, it was “all and more than its promoters claimed it would be. Perhaps it was the most unique and altogether interesting series of scenic events and animated and picturesque life ever seen in America. . . . The writer has seen the greatest masked balls in New York and New Orleans, but nothing to equal this ball.”73 Major John Henry Behan—the last-minute King Rex II and a veteran Mardi Gras impresario—paid the Monte Cristos a premium compliment: “You have done wonderfully well . . . . I have found but few defects in your arrangements and those that have been noticed have been trifling.”74

68 Syndicated identification of Cannon as Rex II was carried on July 5, 1890, by (among others) the Washington, D.C., Evening Star; Washington, D.C., Daily Critic; San Antonio Daily Light; and Grand Forks (ND) Daily Herald; and several more newspapers on July 6, 1890. The Salt Lake Herald showed little curiosity about the switch, reporting merely that “for some reason, however, known only to themselves, at the last moment, John Q. Cannon resigned and his place was filled by J. Henry Behan, of New Orleans” (July 6, 1890). 69 Young, Mystick Krewe, 185. 70 Salt Lake Herald, July 4, 1890. 71 Salt Lake Herald, July 6, 1890.

63 Ogden Daily Commercial, July 5, 1890; Ogden StandardExaminer, May 12, 1931.

72 Ogden Standard-Examiner, May 10, 1931; Salt Lake Herald, July 6, 1890.

66 Ogden Daily Commercial, July 5, 1890.

73 Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper, August 2, 1890, 554. The Salt Lake Tribune of July 6, 1890, mentioned a “correspondent of Frank Leslie’s” at the Thursday war dance, so the rave review might have come from an outside observer rather than a hometown scribe.

67 Young, Mystick Krewe, 190.

74 Ogden Standard, July 8, 1890.

64 Young, Mystick Krewe, 188–89. 65 Salt Lake Herald, July 6, 1890.

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When it was over, the Salt Lake Herald said the Rocky Mountain Carnival “has not been a burlesque but a very creditable presentation.”70 If it lacked the “frivolity” of New Orleans, its gangs of cowboys and dancing Native Americans lent the affair a western air.71 Signs of cultural disconnect appeared at various moments, as the New Orleans folks were “not the least interested” in the Wild West exhibitions, while the Utahns were underwhelmed by the armored knights’ jousting, “which was not as interesting to them as a game of baseball would have been.”72

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Before the dancing began at the grand masked ball, the Shoshones and Bannocks performed their big horse dance. The chiefs wore elaborate headdresses; the warriors wore little more than war paint, smeared from head to foot in yellow ochre and daubed with blue spots. As Perry Young reported, they formed a large circle and began a whoop that might have put the old rebel yell to shame. As women beat the tom-toms, the warriors pranced around the hall in contorted postures, sometimes falling to the floor in unison.64 Some felt that the Indians “smacked more of the Mardi Gras spirit than any other feature” at the carnival.65

mingled without mask at all tournaments and ceremonial events. The substitution came too late to prevent newspapers all over the country from printing a syndicated dispatch on Saturday morning saying Rex II was John Q. Cannon of the Ogden Standard.68 Walmsley recalled that Cannon had not been afraid to risk assassination and was persuaded to abdicate “only with the greatest difficulty.”69

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on par with the pageant. “For the first time,” he wrote, “Ogden saw and learned to throw confetti. And the giddier element blew horns in one another’s ears.” If Kennedy’s memory was accurate, bonfires lighted on Mount Ogden, Ben Lomond, Willard Peak, and even one of the Promontory peaks framed the pageant impressively.63

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For the major participants of the carnival, the experience yielded both personal successes and disappointments. Harvey succeeded in selling lots in his Iliff College Hill subdivision to New Orleans guests.75 Kate Bridewell, the New Orleans songstress who brought down the house in her Ogden performances, married Will Anderson, brother to

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The gorgeous and grotesque costumes of 2,200 masked dancers provided a spectacle not previously beheld in Utah. the carnival queen, and became one of Utah’s most popular vocalists.76 Clifton Mayne’s real estate company shuttered within a month of the carnival, but his San Francisco office went into high gear hawking Ogden real estate. The Sacramento Daily Record-Union, however, warned, “The very fact that Ogden is advertising its growth and its townsite additions in Chicago and San Francisco is a proof that a swindle is intended.”77 The Ogden Standard praised the Shoshones and Bannocks for their “orderly” and “sober” visit. Knowing the Indians had admired the bunting and flags displayed throughout Ogden, the Monte Cristos collected the decorations and shipped them to Fort Hall. Tepees at the Grant Avenue campsite were to remain as standing advertisements for an 1891 carnival. As Ogdenites resumed normalcy, many of them still assumed an encore would occur 75 Ogden Standard, September 24, 1890, recorded that two Harvey lots sold to Captain Thomas Pickles; the Ogden Standard of March 29, 1892, described Pickles as “a large property owner in Ogden.” Pickles’s daughter, Josie, later married Harvey’s brother, Robert Smith Harvey. The Ogden Standard of June 27, 1890, first mentioned the Iliff College Hill. Its name came from Thomas Iliff, the superintendent of Methodist missionary work in Utah, and Ogden’s proposed (but never realized) Methodist University. See Salt Lake Herald, March 3, 7, 1889. 76 Ogden Standard-Examiner, May 8, 1931; Deseret Evening News, April 26, 1902; Ogden Standard, March 8, 1904. 77 Salt Lake Tribune, August 6, 1890; Sacramento Daily RecordUnion, September 13, 1890.

the following summer.78 The Monte Cristos met in early August to strategize for 1891 and “retained” Levy not only to design a second carnival but also to supervise the construction of a large warehouse for storing floats and building more.79 From the carnival’s inception Harvey had envisioned it as self-sustaining and recurring. “[We shall] place it on a financial basis that will each year clear expenses and leave a balance in the treasury,” he had written from New Orleans.80 However, when the treasurer’s report finally appeared in September, the Monte Cristos learned they were ten thousand dollars in the hole.81 They were probably unaware that the 1889 Pueblo, Colorado, Mardi Gras had likewise yielded sunny projections of doing it again, but then quietly faded out.82 Olin A. Kennedy’s 1931 articles about the Rocky Mountain Carnival, which became its most commonly cited reference source, described a bleak financial aftermath. Kennedy wrote that the Monte Cristos held only one tense meeting before dissolving forever; that Harvey lost his home and the Iliff College Hill subdivision in paying off creditors; and that litigation over unpaid bills dragged on for several years.83 However, a closer look seems to show that Kennedy’s recollections were excessively pessimistic. Some suits brought against Harvey and the Monte Cristos were dismissed. The Monte Cristos continued meeting regularly throughout the remainder of 1890.84 The Rocky Mountain Carnival left no permanent landmark to bolster Ogden’s skyline. Its Carni78 Ogden Standard, July 8, 1890; Salt Lake Tribune, July 10, 1890. 79 Ogden Standard, August 7, 1890; Salt Lake Tribune, July 8, 1890. The retention of Levy was probably not formalized. Levy settled in Salt Lake City and for the next decade organized and designed many public entertainments there. See Salt Lake Herald, February 8, May 19, 1891, February 25, 1900. 80 Ogden Daily Commercial, April 6, 1890. 81 Salt Lake Tribune, September 20, 1890. 82 Pueblo (CO) Daily Chieftain, February 23, 1889. 83 Ogden Standard-Examiner, May 14, 1931. 84 Salt Lake Tribune, September 3, 1890. Boyle Furniture’s suit against the Monte Cristos and the S. J. Burt Company’s suit against Harvey were dismissed; Salt Lake Herald, March 11, 1891; Ogden Standard, April 9, 1891. Kennedy was probably referring to the California Fireworks Company’s suit against Harvey, which finally found Harvey liable for $866 after he had been gone from Ogden for two-and-a-half years. Ogden Standard, December 11, 1895; “Harvey’s Fireworks in Dispute,” Chicago Tribune, Apr. 27, 1896. Monte Cristo meetings were noted in Ogden Standard (semi-weekly ed.), September 10, 1890; Ogden Standard, November 9, 16, 1890.


val Palace and Arch of Welcome were dismantled within two months. The temporary transformation of Twenty-Fifth Street into a tableau of pageantry could not lift it out of mundane squalor. No sooner had the revelers left town than the newspapers resumed their complaints about vagrants who loitered in front of saloons and bothered women at Union Station.85

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Harvey, far from slinking out of Ogden in disgrace, became Chamber of Commerce president. In 1892 he returned to New Orleans for the Trans-Mississippi Commercial Congress, an annual convention during which initiatives to benefit the West were debated and formalized as proposals to the U.S. Congress.86 Although Harvey was Utah’s only delegate, he brought home a major trophy: Ogden’s selection as 1893 Trans-Mississippi Congress host city, beating out Houston, Texas, and Sioux City, Iowa. Harvey’s old friend Captain William Beanham of New Orleans seconded Ogden’s nomination from the floor.87

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Ogden was euphoric. “If this should happen to meet Captain Beanham’s eye,” wrote Frank Cannon in the Standard, “he will confer a favor by receiving this as an invitation to another trout breakfast in Ogden Canyon. We thought that the hot biscuits and trout which were cast upon the dancing waters of his soul two years ago would return after many days in the shape of frosted cake and goldfish.”88

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The “very creditable” Rocky Mountain Carnival served as the apogee of Ogden’s experimentation in nineteenth-century boosterism, as speculators feverishly advertised its utopian climate. Since so many western cities mounted similar campaigns, in the end Ogden seemed merely ordinary rather than unique. What could not be duplicated elsewhere was the carnival’s unforeseen detour into thickets of religious conflict. The eventual easing of that conflict would free Ogden to implement William Hope Harvey’s legacy: that a highly effective chamber of commerce can work miracles.

85 Salt Lake Herald, July 11, 1890; Salt Lake Tribune, July 28, 1890 (citing Ogden Daily Union). 86 Ogden Standard, February 26, 1892; San Francisco Call, February 24, 1892. 87 New Orleans Daily Picayune, February 27, 1892; Report of the Proceedings of the [Fourth] Trans-Mississippi Commercial Congress (New Orleans: A. W. Hyatt, 1892), 165-68. 88 Ogden Standard, February 27, 1892.

This purple and gold ribbon is a rare surviving relic of the Rocky Mountain Carnival. —

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Val Holley is an independent historian in Washington, D.C. His book, 25th Street Confidential, was published last year by the University of Utah Press.


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A dance at Ogden’s Union Depot, circa 1930. —

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to the “Real” Historic Twenty-Fifth Street By

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A personal tribute S e p p i

Long before city council members dubbed it “historic,” Twenty-Fifth Street in Ogden, Utah, was notorious in the predominantly LDS community, particularly the three blocks just east of the Union Station between Wall Avenue and Washington Boulevard. By day the area differed little from Twenty-Fourth or Twenty-Third, the business streets running parallel to it. But after seven in the evening, several establishments, including my father’s National Tavern, opened their doors and Twenty-Fifth Street lit up. In those days, during the Big War, the train depot, located one-and-a-half blocks west of my father’s place, was where passengers—soldiers, most of them, on the way to their deployments overseas—had to disembark for a two-hour layover in one of the driest, most pious places in the United States of America. Ours was a prosperous railroad center where train crews were changed, where food from the station commissary was prepared and loaded onto the diner, and where minor repairs to the cars, brakes, and engines were made following the steep and mountainous descent through Weber Canyon just east of town. After traveling seven hundred miles from Omaha on the Union Pacific tracks and before enduring another seven hundred miles to San Francisco on the Southern Pacific after this stop, for many civilians, Ogden was just an inconvenience. But for the soldiers on the way to an overseas assignment, it might have meant the last two hours of real entertainment stateside. Everyone got off the train, and if they were lucky, Mr. John Steele was on

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the street to greet them. Mr. Steele was a grandfatherly, impeccably groomed gentleman who, toward the beginning of the evening, was the most respectable-looking person in town. He always wore a dark suit, white shirt, and red tie—in the coldest of winter he simply added a heavy sweater beneath the suit jacket—and attired this way, he might be taken for a college professor or a physician. Perhaps it was this gentle, elderly, furrow-browed appearance that encouraged the easterners to tap his shoulder and explain their situations and their confusion, walking along a street differing so radically from their native haunts in Boston. Could he direct them to a local lounge where they could buy a drink? By the time the train arrived, about eight o’clock p.m., Mr. Steele would be a few beers on his way to the moon and more than happy to help. “Right here on Twenty-Fifth Street you have three city blocks of saloons. Just depends on what you want to drink. If you want Salt Lake beer, ask for Fisher’s; Ogden, then get Becker’s, and if you want to pay double the price, ask for Milwaukee beer and get Budweiser. Much better than the local stuff.” If the visitors requested wine, Mr. Steele looked heavenward as if he might expect a vision. “For wine you’ll have to take a taxi two miles up the street to the state liquor store,” which he knew full well was near the more expensive homes in Ogden on Harrison Boulevard. There, he’d mention, they’d have to fill out an application and prove they’d lived twenty-one years before the liquor store manager would approve the purchase of two bottles of alcohol. “Wine or whiskey, no matter.” “But we only want one glass each,” the visitors might object. “Then you better settle for beers in Freddie’s saloon, right here,” Mr. Steele would say, pointing to my father’s bar and ending the dialogue with a wink for any witnesses he thought he might have entertained. We never did find out much about Mr. Steele. There were rumors around that the drama department at Weber College had employed him until the administration found out about his drinking habits and his escapades in the bad part of town. Dad once said that Mr. Steele found the bars on Twenty-Fifth Street paid him more for his acting abilities merely walking the street, greeting strangers, and enticing them to enter the various establishments than he could ever make teaching drama to youngsters at the college.

My mother, my youngest sister, and I, inside our 1931 Chevrolet, angled to the curb, were usually among the Twenty-Fifth Street spectators on weekend evenings. Parking on “Two-Bit Street,” as the town teetotalers called it, was at least as appealing as staying at home listening to the Montgomery Ward Airline radio—an imposing appliance, which stood on four legs like the thirty-inch console television that would one day replace it—with an aerial wire that pierced the wall and ended ten feet above the rooftop. Hopefully there would be no thunderstorms between Denver and Salt Lake City, replacing the human voice with static—and certainly here on Twenty-Fifth Street, the show went on, rain or shine, the comedy of real life, music, pathos. In his hometown of Ruffrè, in northern Italy, my father would have been more than respectable, but in Ogden of the 1930s, ’40s, and ’50s he was anything but. His establishment is now a tavern called Brewskis. Inside, the long, hand-carved bar with its ten stools has been moved from the west wall to the east wall. But the tables on the west, the two pool tables in the center of the room, the bandstand, and the restroom near the back door are still the same, as are the gaudy neon signs and beer displays behind the front windows. In those bygone years, every weekend the pool tables disappeared to accommodate a small dance area, the local college band, and just enough room between tables to seat the customers who found that slumming on Twenty-Fifth Street for the cost of several ten-cent beers was enjoyable and economical. The main attraction for much of the town, though, was what went on outside the bars on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Even the local gentry, who would never be seen in a drinking establishment, could be found parked on the street, enjoying the camaraderie of the crowd—entertained by antics of the half-schnockered, as well as by simple friendly conversation. The music of the day spilled out along the street; a little jazz but mostly Benny Goodman’s romantic songs: “Don’t Sit Under the Apple Tree,” “I’ll Be Seeing You,” and “Harbor Lights.” And then there was the fashion show, courtesy of men and women disembarking the eight o’clock train. The gentility of Boston and New York sifted in among the gold miners, cowboys, and bronc riders, their clothing presaging styles that wouldn’t reach us until six months hence—astonishing to women like my mother and her closest friends, Consolata and Virginia. Like many people, my parents would park the Chevy on Twenty-Fifth and spend a couple of hours


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Twenty-Fifth Street, circa 1930. —

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watching the show on the sidewalks—which probably reminded my folks of evenings sitting in the old-world piazza where their townspeople would gather and mingle. We preferred the spot in front of the three-story building in the middle of the block, the building housing my dad’s bar on the first floor. On the second and third floors above it was the Shy Ann, known to be the brothel over which Mary Belle, as I’ll call her, presided. My parents would cast knowing glances whenever they saw a soldier meet a pretty girl, talk a while, and then accompany her into a tavern or into the Shy Ann itself. But viewing these encounters was of no interest to me at all. Weekend nights on Twenty-Fifth Street mattered to me for three reasons: number one, the treats—root beer, candy, and ice cream brought to our car by the visiting wives of the Trentini farmers or Twinkies and candy bars brought by my father from the bar; number two, playing with kids my age; and number three, the musical entertainment provided by the Salvation Army Band.

My parents looked forward to sitting on TwentyFifth Street because it afforded the possibility of meeting old farmer friends who worked seven days a week to provide vegetables, meat, and milk for the community as they tried to eke out a meager income to sustain themselves and their families. The farming community surrounding Ogden City had many immigrant farmers from the same Italian-speaking region as my parents, Trentino, in the Tyrolean Alps. On Saturday nights, whole families of the Trentini convened in their cars along this stretch of road. By and by, the farmers and their older boys entered the bars to drink a few beers and discuss events of the past week—mostly politics, the economy, and some personal aspects of their lives. The firstgeneration Trentini wives, brought up with the virtues of the old country, wouldn’t be caught dead in a bar. Crossing that threshold would be left to the second-generation Trentini, the wives who accompanied their husbands for a night out. Dancing in the bars cost a couple of beers, much less than the five-dollar admission fee to either the White City or Berthana dance halls cloistered on the upper, more respected part of Twenty-Fifth. The bars on lower Twenty-Fifth Street realized their economic advantage and so started clearing enough floor space for some dancing.

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from California were to be delivered. Or how Mrs. B, during her illness, learned that Mr. B was courting Widow C.

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One thing I found hard to understand when discussion centered around the Shy Ann and Mary Belle was the degree to which Mrs. Rauzi found Mary Belle to be the equivalent of a suffragist and a modern, independent American woman, while my mother viewed Mary Belle as a tool of Lucifer and an embarrassment to the Trentini community. As soon as I developed a losing streak in the games, my mother would glance toward the back seat and me. The other women in the front seat, after noting mother’s wink, quickly changed the subject to my dad’s rose garden or some other innocuous thing. But before long they were back talking about why the young T’s or the second-generation P’s were getting a divorce because they weren’t old enough to understand the rigors of married life.

The author, Fred Seppi, as a child. —

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212 Older women like my mother instead gathered two or three at a time in friends’ cars to gossip. These informal meetings did not require a prior telephone call to set up a time and date for a visit, even among the closest friends, as prescribed by the day’s etiquette. Meanwhile we kids sat in the back seats eating treats and playing games: checkers, tic-tac-toe, and sometimes the new game called Monopoly. But often Monopoly extended beyond the two-hour limit for parking in a single location, and we had to disband prematurely without a clear winner—or without me having my fill of the stories the mothers told, which I would be relating far into the future. The treats and games quickly lost their appeal when the women got together per chiacchierare, an Italian phrase pronounced like the cackle of a hen. What I learned about the Trentini community from these chiacchierare amazed me. Often I’d lose a game simply because I became more interested in hearing about Mr. P’s drinking problem or the details concerning the concealment in a shed of Mr. R’s homemade wine or when and where the grapes

Of course, part of the wonderful spectacle on those evenings could be credited to alcohol, much to the dismay of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (many of whose adherents were in attendance). Yes, there were disagreements between friends sitting around a bar table, disagreements that ended up with fisticuffs either in the center of the bar or on the street curb outside. Although we always tried to avoid a parking place that might become a boxing ring, there were occasions when we happened to park right in the middle of a dispute—such as the night when a burly man was knocked down against the front of our car onto our double-steel bumper, necessitating an emergency call from Dad’s bar to the police. Once the police had hauled the brawlers away and Dad had cleaned the blood off his bumper with the bar towel he always had draped over his arm to wait on bar patrons, my mother (ever the pragmatist) said, “I hope he finds a clean towel for the customers.” For those of the LDS faith who ran our town, Twenty-Fifth Street was a disgrace, especially the threeblock stretch on the north side between the Union Station and the Broom Hotel on Washington Boulevard. But for many—those in transit on the trains and the many farmers who had emigrated from Trentino to Weber County—it was a refuge, a place to talk politics, economy, or whatever topic governed the local news. And, of course, to listen to the music and to dance. The saloons had limited space, but every Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday at five p.m., the chairs and tables in Dad’s bar were crowded together to


permit the half-circular stage resting with its flat side against the wall to be lowered into position to accommodate Mr. Pilcher’s five-piece band. Mr. Pilcher played the violin, and his orchestra consisted of coronet, trombone, bass drum, viola, and on occasion a singer to render the Tommy DorseyGlenn Miller genre of song popular during the war. Since the dance floor was very small, during the summer the entry doors were left open so couples could dance outside in the fresh air, and of course, the sound of music filled the cars at the curb.

Some nights, Mr. Pilcher’s musicians had competition from the Salvation Army band directly across the street. The maestro’s name was General Toscano (he was in the army, after all), which was close enough to be confused with the name Toscanini, a man a few years older and more well known, but to me, equally famous. Nevertheless, the adults seemed amused by what I couldn’t understand: Maestro Toscano’s name implied an adult man from the region of Tuscany, Italy—an adult of some wealth and appreciation. And since in Italian the suffix -ini means little or childlike, Maestro Toscanini was therefore the little, insignificant orchestra leader from Tuscany. The entire Army orchestra consisted of one trumpet, one violin, a piccolo, castanets, a drum, cymbals, and a chorus of five Salvationettes dressed in red and black. To my young ears this band rivaled the New York Philharmonic. Conducted by General Toscano, the Army always played eight numbers, half of which were either Neapolitan songs or operatic melodies. Before each selection the band played in its half hour on stage (which was a portion of sidewalk next to the curb) the maestro explained the composition and something about the composer. Of course, nine times of ten the composer was Verdi. And the compositions were all the well-known arias often heard on radio soap opera commercials,

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During the musical intermissions every hour or so, Mr. Pilcher himself stood by the opened door of the National Tavern while his musicians mingled with the customers and accepted the drinks they sponsored. Mr. Pilcher had devised a collection bag, something like a sock that hung from his violin. He came outside to play Strauss waltzes on his violin and graciously thanked anyone walking by or standing on the sidewalk for their contributions. Somehow his clever arm movements allowed him to continue playing “Blue Danube” while he picked coins out of the stocking and put them into his pocket without missing a note. It was one trick for getting by during hard times.

213 A calendar from the National Tavern. —

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such as “Brindisi” from La Traviata or the elephant march from Aida. Come to think of it, every school child was singing the toreador song from Carmen: “Oh! Toreodory / Don’t spit on the floory, / Use the cuspidory, / That’s what it’s fory.” And the child that I was, listening in the parking stall to these concerts, I became a devotee of opera forever. But beyond the boisterous spectacle on TwentyFifth Street there was the sorrow of the war. How many young soldiers and sailors walked the pavement to meet the girls who motioned to them and asked, “Buy me a drink, soldier?” Together they entered the bar, only to emerge a half hour or so later and pass through the door to the Shy Ann.


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Unlike my father, most Trentini immigrants in the vicinity of Ogden resided on family farms, planting and harvesting crops as they had back in Italy. Generally, those who stayed on the farm did quite well thanks to the agricultural economic policies of the U.S. government. Because they knew how to improve the alkali soil near the Great Salt Lake, they could buy that otherwise unfarmable land for almost nothing and have it producing in a short period of time.

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Pete Rauzi often discussed with my parents how he was able to acquire his large corn and vegetable fields at a reasonable cost. When he first arrived in Weber County from the coal mines in Superior, Wyoming, he bought a few acres of seemingly worthless land for $1,000 he borrowed from First Security Bank in Ogden for one year. Periodically he drove his wagon to a friend’s sheep camp in the mountains east of the city and transferred sheep dung to his farm to enrich the soil. Well before his loan was to be repaid he returned the $1,000 to Mr. Squires, head of the bank, and asked for another $1,000 to buy additional acreage. The banker found it hard to believe the land could be so profitable. When Mr. Rauzi requested a fourth loan, Mr. Squires suggested that he might be manufacturing and selling some hooch in violation of the prohibition laws. Mr. Squires wanted to see this miraculously profitable farm for himself. After touring the hospital-clean stables that housed the cows and milk production and seeing the abundance of tomatoes, corn, and the like, and plants common to Italy such as flat beans, zucchini, eggplant, grapes, and peppers—the seeds for which had all been sent to Pete Rauzi from relatives in Trentino—Mr. Squires was impressed enough to approve any additional loans Mr. Rauzi might apply for. Good for Mr. Squires. But no one in the Trentino community ever doubted that the liquids derived from the California grapes arriving nightly by truck at the beginning of each autumn also helped make the bank loan payments. What Mr. Squires didn’t know couldn’t hurt him. In general, the first generation of Trentini immigrants found success by either staying with their parents to help on the farms or by attending the local agricultural college, studying methods to improve production efficiency. The Trentino farming community was large enough in Weber County that the Trentini formed their own social organization called the Friendly Club for periodic social

gatherings. The club thrives even today; within the past twenty years the Ogden chapter has hosted two of the quaternary meetings of the Trentini nel Mondo International Club, with officials from the old country in attendance. The original Trentini immigrants were such a cohesive and insular group that many of the wives saw no need to learn English. Whenever Mrs. Prevedel came to downtown Ogden from her country farm and my mother was not home, Mrs. Prevedel had no difficulty telling me in the Nonese dialect what she wanted. I understood her perfectly from listening to mother and her friends Consolata and Virginia, who visited every second week. But, since I could not speak Nonese, I had great difficulty making Mrs. Prevedel understand that mother would be home on the next bus from downtown, and that she should have a chair for a few minutes. And when my mother did arrive there was the discussion about how difficult Mrs. Prevedel found coming to America (meaning downtown Ogden) when she was content to stay in Little Italy (that is, her farm) where she understood her own language. Translated: Mrs. Prevedel felt out of place in downtown Ogden and preferred to stay home on the farm where her neighbor friends spoke her native language. Her husband and other Trentini farmers who wanted to sell their produce in town—along with immigrants like my father and their families who established businesses and homes in Ogden—had to learn English to live and trade among their neighbors. At a relatively early age, I became aware that the religious community to which all of my friends belonged, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, strongly approved of mother’s ethnic culinary abilities, but would have certainly and strongly disapproved of my father’s business calling. Although friends knew and said little, strangers who asked what my dad did for a living were told he was a co-owner with Ralph Profaizer, a fellow Trentino, of the grocery store located in West Weber. In those days, when so few had automobiles, that store in the countryside could have been in Chicago, and few were curious enough to want further information. Mr. Newey, my friend Joe’s dad and our next-door neighbor, was constantly after my father to apply for a job at Southern Pacific Railroad. Mr. Newey was one of the executives who would evaluate the application and be sure to hire Dad at a better salary than he could ever make delivering beer to customers’ tables on Twenty-Fifth. My three older sisters and I, overhearing Mr. Newey’s offers, hoped on


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hope that they would take hold. But each time, Dad simply replied that he knew nothing about railroads and even had trouble sometimes speaking English, so what kind of work would he be doing at Union Station—a janitor, ticket seller, or some other menial duty? No, he liked to take care of his own business, on occasion giving younger people his opinion on their problems. Not lucrative, but very satisfying. Listening to Dad’s denials, we prying siblings would shake our heads in disappointment. We didn’t really care about job details. But Dad did. To us, being able to say “My father works for Southern Pacific” or “He has a job at Hill Air Force Base” would mean we’d have a chance to fit in, to be accepted—hardly possible were the truth known: “He owns the National Tavern on Twenty-Fifth.”

In contrast, my high school friends Tom Pappas and Eddie Simoni—also first-generation immigrant sons—enjoyed relative social ease. Eddie was a star swimming athlete, popular in high school for himself alone and very proud that his father had become half-owner of the National Tavern. Eddie’s family were devout Catholics: when his dad Joe was at the bar, Eddie’s mother went door to door to sell DouayRhiems Bibles to the Mormons, a very expensive edition illustrated with paintings by Giotto, da Vinci—all the famous Catholics. Even our next-door neighbor, Mrs. Newey, a pillar of the LDS Twenty-Second Ward, bought a bible—to her dismay when she learned it was the Catholic Bible, not the Protestant King James. But the full-color plates of the art were worth the mistake. As for Tom, his family owned the tavern called The Club a block from Union Station. Tom was very popular in high school. His dad had given him a Buick Roadmaster in exchange for Tom’s promise to graduate. Mr. Pappas was inordinately proud of his Greek heritage; the Greeks had founded western civilization long before the local church was founded in New York and then transplanted to Utah, so no one could dictate what was moral or not to him. Whereas my parents discouraged my sisters and me from learning Italian, Tom, like all Greek children, was required to learn to speak his parents’ language fluently and to take great pride in his heritage. Like his father, Tom would not bow down to any religion but the Orthodox. Quite a difference from one of Italian ethnicity, who might be

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I was always walking a tightrope between the few friends who knew about the bar and where it was and those probing for information. It was a predicament I detested—and probably why I avoided large social gatherings, a habit that persists even today.

215 The author’s parents. —

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cowed further into social withdrawal by reports in the daily news of the Mano Nera terrorizing New York and Chicago’s Capone spreading corruption and death. e The past harbors some regrets, but also it also supplies wonderful memories that seem even more vivid now, some seventy years later. Cameras, film, and development were too expensive for families of modest means; photography was an indulgence reserved for the few occasions when a cherished relative or friend visited. I don’t need a photograph, anyway, to remember Twenty-Fifth Street. From the twelfth-floor restaurant on top of the Hotel Ben Lomond, the contrast between those few blocks and


Bus Widmer and His Clevelanders playing at the Ben Lomond Hotel, December 14, 1935. —

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the rest of Ogden was stark. Back then, one-hundred-watt globes lit all the other streets, one fixture in the center of the street and two at the ends of each block. One small area of town, tainted perhaps according to some, was bright and alive. The rest of the city died at sundown. I don’t need a photograph to confirm what I can see clearly in the mind’s eye; sometimes, though, it’s an image more clouded than I’d like. e Tonight, on a Sunday evening in June 1939, it is already 6:30 p.m. We drive down Twenty-Fifth Street to Union Station, turn over to Twenty-Fourth Street, back up three blocks to Washington Boulevard, over to Twenty-Fifth, down Twenty-Fifth, and around again three times. Nope. We’re too late to find a parking place in front of the Shy Ann or the National Tavern or the Salvation Army across the street. So for the first time I can remember, my father has decided to park on the first block from Union Station in a vacant angle parking stall on the south side of the street. Strange the difference in entertainment between the north side of Twenty-Fifth and the south, where people of all color and ethnicity can walk. But luck is still with us: we can still enjoy the concert in front of the Salvation Army a few doors away. About two years before, the Army had converted the old Lyceum Theater into a shelter for all people in need. You can still see the outline of the theater ticket box office, now a fashion window advertising the menu for the day. Tonight the menu reads chicken stew, exactly the same as the last time we parked in this stall. Some of the brickwork on the building has decayed during its twenty years

of existence, but the four Doric columns holding the front face intact appear as polished as those in front of any other theater in town. Oh, look! The door has opened and all ten members of the symphony have come outside and lined up on the street curb double file. But something’s wrong. The trumpet player hurriedly goes back through the door, and the maestro has not yet appeared. Maestro Toscano has been looking rather old. I hope he is not sick. After about five minutes of apprehension, everything is all right again. The trumpeter had forgotten to bring out the donation pot on its stand, and the maestro never showed up before the stage and players were set. At the center of the front row are a boy and a girl, identical in looks and manner, facial features, and even in their clothing. They are the young twins of the maestro. Their violins are as polished and well-kept as they themselves. Behind them stands the trumpeter, a nervous black man at least six feet tall who continually wipes his brow with a starkly contrasting white hanky to suppress the heat of the evening. You really cannot see all of the instruments in this orchestra from here, but the two instrumentalists on the ends of the second row are obvious. The girl wearing a Mexican dress plays the castanets, and the boy on the other end has the cymbals. During concerts past, the maestro explained that he is a devotee of French and Italian opera and only occasionally plays Mexican music. So he seldom uses the castanets. He has this girl because she is so gracious and beautiful and seems to attract larger contributions to the donation pot supervised by the trumpeter. And at the end of each concert the maestro enjoys taking a quarter from his pocket and personally tipping the beautiful castanet player. As for the man with the cymbals, he never plays in a composition either and is not handsome enough to


My mother asks Mr. Steele what was going on across the street and how come the police only put one man, not two, into the paddy wagon. “The preacher of the Second Methodist Church for colored people was up to his old shenanigans again,” says Mr. Steele. “The rev stopped his protests, lying down in the middle of the intersection of State Street and South Temple in Salt Lake, when the police finally refused to erect barriers to prevent him from getting run over. So he moved to Ogden, Twenty-Fifth and Washington. But then, the police let him know no more barriers in Ogden either. So now he protests on Twenty-Fifth Street.”

That night’s events made me begin to wonder about things like justice, truth, rights, dignity. My eyes opened just a bit to see that people in power or in established groups thought they knew ultimate truths that in reality were simply arbitrary, unjust, and harmful. Tonight, in the twenty-first century, I’m waiting for the pizza I’ve ordered from Brewskis. The third floor is gone, and the entry from the front sidewalk to the apartments above the bar has been bricked over. During my childhood, that entry was guarded by an ornate frieze of hand-carved demons and angels, reportedly sculpted by the same artist who built the bar counter inside my father’s tavern—as well as the intricate meshwork adorning the altar in a local church. The artist was an alcoholic whose name no one considered important enough to record.

“What did he do?” my mother asks. “What did he do?” Mr. Steele repeats. “He walked down the north side of Twenty-Fifth Street just like he belonged there. You know colored people can’t do that. A white guy told him to go to the south side where he belongs, over here in front of the Porters and Waiters Club, and he refused. So the white guy roughed him up pretty good.” “But the police only arrested one person, not two, didn’t they?” my mother asks. “Yes, because the rev was the only one that broke the law and caused the disturbance. The white guy was in the right. And the rev insists on repeating

The intricately carved doorway, with its bright neon sign mounted above, announced the residence of Mary Belle and her business. The spelling on the sign was, however, a consternation for the city council. Mary Belle, a Trentina like my mother and her friends Consolata and Virginia, owned or managed several of the buildings on Twenty-Fifth Street. She evidently pursued her business exclusively on the second and third floors of these buildings, including the one housing my father’s tavern. She preferred to remain behind the scenes, but her enormous influence upon the city council members, all men in those days, was obvious.

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Mr. Steele, who has witnessed the conflagration, has noticed our car parked on the duller part of the street. My father explains that we had been too late for the premium parking and that was the reason we parked here in front of the Porters and Waiters Club.

Later, tucked in my bed, I decide the south side of Twenty-Fifth Street is no fun—unless we’re parked in front of the Salvation Army on the second block from the station. The Army concerts with the castanet lady are still okay.

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The Prevedels and deGiorgeos have been late parking too, so the two farm wives see our car and crowd into the front seat to chiacchierare about the week’s Trentini social news. After little more than a half hour of gossip, we note commotion across the street in front of The Club, a lounge—no, of course, nothing so seedy as a bar—run by the Greek brothers. We can see that people have formed a circle around two men who seem to have gotten into a fistfight. From our location across the street the scuffle looks like a boxing match to settle some score. The police have been called to stop the turmoil. When they arrive it looks as though they arrest only one person, rather than two, and haul him off.

every now and then, even though he always gets beat up. You know some of the porters or waiters on the Union Pacific or Southern Pacific trains who are new at their jobs and aren’t familiar with the laws in Ogden occasionally make the mistake of walking over to the north side of the street; but when a resident of the city points out the law to them they graciously follow directions and go to the Porters and Waiters Club across the street for overnight accommodations until their train returns the next day to bring them home. But the rev is stubborn like a mule and continually returns with his protests. Like the rev is going to change the world and get his way.”

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be attractive. The maestro uses him at the beginning of each selection to make sure the audience remains awake.

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One of the first newspaper articles about her that I remember described a meeting in which council members objected to the sign above the entrance to her establishment above the National Tavern. Originally the sign in bright red letters above the door, Cheyenne, referred to a western town 450 miles east,

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That night’s events made me begin to wonder about things like justice, truth, rights, dignity. which was considered Ogden’s only valid contender for rodeos of national importance. After several years, Mary Belle’s marketing and entrepreneurial instincts suggested that changing the spelling to a more descriptive homonym might increase profits significantly. The city council continually voted to require Mary Belle to change the name Shy Ann back to the correct spelling. Ogden’s Mayor Harman Peery had succeeded in competing seriously with the capital of Wyoming for the title “Rodeo Capital of the World.” Mary Belle had simply used the name of that city for her establishment as an honor to the mayor’s achievement. Her argument: the city council certainly could not make her change the name simply because she had displayed a phonetic spelling over her door. According to the news article, most of the council did not know the meaning of the word phonetic and after some private discussion and, likely, tacit memories evoked by Mary Belle, the council somehow forgot their objections. The sign above the entrance remained incorrectly spelled until Mary Belle decided to retire years later. My most indelible memory of Mary Belle concerns the local high school, which still sits on top of the bench about three miles from historic Twenty-Fifth. No question why that commanding edifice is still referred to as the “Castle on the Hill.” It and two other buildings were erected in the city during the depths of the Depression. In the 1930s, when the national economy appeared darkest, the federal government initiated two major make-work programs: the Work Projects Administration (WPA) and the Public Works Administration (PWA). When few people had enough money for necessities, these federal

governmental efforts provided work and along with it, tangible evidence that everything would be all right again one day in economically devastated areas. During this time, the WPA erected a building in Ogden on Twenty-Fifth Street to house the offices of the Forest Service. The edifice was ornate, adopting the fashionable art-deco style of architecture of the Chrysler building in New York. City governments that could show a need for the construction of municipal buildings to improve their city’s functions also had access to funding from the federal government. The Ogden city council, of course, decided that old city hall needed replacement, and in accordance with the federal regulations, requested one million dollars to build a new city hall constructed in the same art-deco style as the Forest Service building. At another meeting, the council voted to petition for funds to rebuild the overcrowded local high school, asking for a mere quarter of a million dollars to construct an addition to the existing building. A week or so after the request for the high school appropriation was announced, the newspapers reported an emergency council session requested by a citizen known only as Mary Belle. During this subsequent meeting, Mary Belle insisted that if the council could seek the one million dollars from the federal government to build a new city hall for city and county employees, it could find it necessary to ask for a similar sum to build a new high school in the same attractive art-deco style for the kids who really needed improved educational facilities. Naturally, council members were reluctant to submit a request for two expensive buildings when it seemed unlikely that even the city hall would be approved. But, according to the Examiner, after a short deliberation (and likely private conversations between some council members and Mary Belle, recalling old times), the council voted that a new high school, appointed with modern equipment and decorative architecture, would be necessary regardless of the additional cost. Editorials at the time took the city council to task for not giving Mary Belle the credit due her for the artistic masterpiece that was our high school. Even so, I recall school teachers who, some years later, occasionally criticized Mary Belle in class, but never explained why exactly she was so bad. Few of them credited her for the beautiful building in which they worked. Even Consolata, Virginia, and my mother, sitting on our mohair sofa and chair, expressed their disapproval of Mary Belle. Consolata pondered once what kind of art and statues might lurk behind


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A half-century ago, Ogden’s gentry was more than disconcerted when Al Capone, the infamous Chicago millionaire Mafioso, reportedly congratulated the people of the town for their free enterprise and their famous street. My dad’s bar, the National Tavern, was situated in the middle of the block amid all the shops and stores on the north side of street—the white side. The tavern faced Willie’s Barber Shop on the south side, two doors east of the Salvation Army and the Porters and Waiters Club. On the day of my father’s retirement party, Willie had to cross the street to the National Tavern with a bag over his head to attend. Time and wisdom relieved the racism of those days. My father retired; I often wait in my car outside of the building that housed his National Tavern and Mary Belle’s Shy Ann for one of Brewskis takeout pizzas. These days, something is missing from Twenty-Fifth Street: authenticity. The authentic Twenty-Fifth Street included the rabble mixing with the religious and dance music creating the background for the gossip of my mother and

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A crowd gathered on Twenty-Fifth Street to see Herbert Hoover, 1932. —

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the red Shy Ann sign they had to look at when they parked at the curb on Twenty-Fifth Street to watch the weekend dramas unfold. Whenever I stopped playing with my toy cars on the floor and seemed too interested in the mystery they were pondering, the topic of their conversation abruptly changed. Little did those three know that a few years hence their little Freddie would be able to tell them that no disgusting décor was evident on the third floor. In fact, Mary Belle’s halls were more subdued than those found in the Hotel Ben Lomond.

219 her friends. It included the tavern operator who befriended a civic-minded madam and a black barber, all that the upstanding city councilmen wished to eliminate. Inside the Summit Hotel on TwentyFourth Street is a lounge known, until recently, as Electric Alley; the hotel called the upscale restaurant on the west side of its lobby the Porters’ and Waiters’ Club; and the café on the east side was named after Mary Belle. They were strange, though conspicuous, tributes. Thirty years ago Twenty-Fifth Street was designated “Historic Twenty-Fifth Street,” but its history is largely erased and forgotten. For many years I kept a scrapbook of articles clipped from the Ogden Standard-Examiner, stories and photographs that pertained to Mary Belle. When I think of what Ogden was and is, what an individual citizen, an immigrant’s daughter, can do to shape a legacy for generations to come, I think of her.

Fred Seppi, a lifelong resident of Ogden, Utah, retired from Hill Air Force Base in 1986, where he was employed as a physicist. He is completing a memoir, The Boy Under the Stairs.

WEB EXTRA: UHQ has published several memoirs throughout the years. Read some of them at history.utah. gov/uhq-memoirs.


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An 1891 map showing a road on the east side of Ash Creek (above Belleview) through difficult terrains. —

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The Communitarian Road in Pioneer Utah By

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The Black Ridge—a formation of jagged volcanic rock that fills Ash Creek Canyon for some three miles north of Pintura in Washington County, Utah—was one of the legendary barriers that made traveling to and from Southern Utah’s “Dixie” difficult, if not impossible.1 Crossing the ridge became almost a rite of passage for the region’s pioneers, as evidenced by several accounts of Dixie’s settlement. Maureen Whipple’s great Mormon novel, The Giant Joshua (1942), opens with a company of pioneers struggling to navigate the Black Ridge. Likewise, George Hicks, one of the early settlers of Washington, wrote a poem on life in Dixie that highlights the geological formation: 1 Halka Chronic, Roadside Geology of Utah (Missoula, MT: Mountain Press, 1990), 244. A volcanic eruption about two million years ago caused lava to flow down present Ash Creek Canyon. After it hardened into black basalt, it eroded much more slowly than surrounding rock and so became a ridge. The Black Ridge basaltic rock is of “the same age and composition” as that on top of the Hurricane Cliffs to the east. The history of the Black Ridge road has been told in such sources as James Bleak, “Annals of the Southern Utah Mission,” holograph, MS 318, Church History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah (hereafter CHL); Richard E. Turley Jr., ed., Selected Collections from the Archives of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 2 vols., 74 DVDs (Provo, UT: BYU Press, 2002), 1:19; Andrew Karl Larson, “I Was Called To Dixie”: The Virgin River Basin: Unique Experiences in Mormon Pioneering (Salt Lake City: Deseret News Press, 1960), 514–19; Janet Seegmiller, A History of Iron County: Community Above Self (Salt Lake City: Utah State Historical Society and Iron County Commission, 1997), 380; Douglas D. Alder and Karl F. Brooks, A History of Washington County: From Isolation to Destination (Salt Lake City: Utah State Historical Society and Washington County Commission, 1996), 225–26. Of special value are the writings of Morris Shirts, a descendant of Peter Shirts. See Morris A. Shirts, “The Black Ridge: Extracts from ‘Peter’s Diary’,” typescript, M277.9248 B627s 1970, CHL, and “Black Ridge Mountains,” typescript, F 832.S68 S54, Special Collections, Gerald R. Sherratt Library, Southern Utah University, Cedar City, Utah (hereafter SLSUU). None of these accounts covers the important Hamblin-Judd expedition in 1856.

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Conquering the black ridge

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At length we reached the Black Ridge where I broke my wagon down, I could not find a carpenter so far from any town, So with a clumsy cedar pole I fixed an awkward slide; My wagon pulled so heavy then that Betsy [Hicks’s wife] could not ride.2

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Indeed, the Black Ridge was punishing for wagons, which often broke down there and somehow had to be repaired on location. A long stretch of sand, another barrier dreaded by the pioneers, followed the fearsome ridge. Hicks continued:

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When we reached the Sandy, we could not move at all, For poor old Jim and Bolly began to puff and loll. I whipped and swore a little but could not make the route, For myself, the team, and Betsy, were all of us give out.3

This difficult route was necessary because it served as a lifeline between southern Utah and the rest of the state. The first town south of the Black Ridge was Santa Clara, founded in late 1854 on the Santa Clara River. The road closest to it was the Spanish or California Trail, which passed through Mountain Meadows and continued southwest past Santa Clara, avoiding Ash Creek Canyon.4 However, after Mormon settlers established Washington, Toquerville, and St. George (in 1857, 1858, and 1861, respectively), creating a usable road over the Black Ridge became a high priority because they needed a direct route to Dixie. It was relatively easy to traverse the Ash Creek Canyon by horseback or on foot, following Indian trails. Bringing wagons and other vehicles by that route, however, was almost impossible without a workable road, and wagons were crucial to pioneers and the freighters who brought necessary supplies—including food—to pioneer communities. Creating the road over the Black Ridge represented a monumental task, which tried the dedication, ingenuity, and will of the settlers of Dixie. Their conquest of the Black Ridge became a 2 As quoted in Andrew Karl Larson, The Red Hills of November: A Pioneer Biography of Utah’s Cotton Town (Salt Lake City: Deseret News Press, 1957), 69. 3 Ibid. 4 See Edward Leo Lyman, The Overland Journey from Utah to California: Wagon Travel from the City of Saints to the City of Angels (Reno: University of Nevada Press, 2004). The Spanish Trail provided the more direct route from northern Utah to southern California, so overland travelers rarely took the Ash Creek Canyon route. One exception was the Dukes-Turner company in 1857; see Lyman, Overland Journey, 140–41.

major communitarian accomplishment in southern Utah, as local Latter-day Saints contributed tithing and tax work hours toward its building and upkeep.5 In addition, they were supported by financial allocations from the government of Utah. Indian trails had passed by the Black Ridge, and the earliest whites who traversed Ash Creek Canyon undoubtedly followed these.6 Paiute names for the formation show that it challenged Indians, as it later would whites. According to LaVan Martineau, Paiutes knew the Black Ridge as Kaw’uwhaim Awvee (Ankle Lying) or Too’Yoonuv (Lava Flow). They called the wider area Chuhngkawweep (Rough Land), “due to the roughness of the area caused by the large lava field.”7 The Black Ridge served as the boundary between the Tave-at-sooks, the Paiutes who lived near modern Kanarraville, on the rim of the Great Basin, and the Toquer-ats, the Paiutes who lived near modern Toquerville, south of the Black Ridge.8 The Black Ridge canyon enters written history with the 1776 expedition of fathers Silvestre Vélez de Escalante and Francisco Atanasio Domínguez. Two Indians led the padres into the canyon on October 13, 1776, after the company had traveled south through the Kanarraville area. They “entered a ridge-cut entirely of black lava rock which lies between two high sierras by way of a gap.”9 Escalante and Domínguez recognized that this difficult ridge acted as a kind of gateway. In the roughest part of the canyon, the two Paiute guides suddenly disappeared. “We applauded their 5 For Mormonism’s communitarian history, see Leonard J. Arrington, Feramorz Y. Fox, and Dean L. May, Building the City of God: Community and Cooperation among the Mormons (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1992). For the wider American background, see Donald E. Pitzer, ed., America’s Communal Utopias: The Developmental Process (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina, 1997), which has a chapter on Mormonism. 6 See Shirts, “The Black Ridge: Extracts,” appendix, “Probable Road History,” SLSUU, for evidence of Indian use of the Peter’s Leap area. 7 LaVan Martineau, The Southern Paiutes: Legends, Lore, Language, and Lineage (Las Vegas: K.C. Publications, 1992), 186 (quotations); William R. Palmer, “Indian Names in Utah Geography,” Utah Historical Quarterly 1, no. 1 (January 1928): 22. Pauites also called Ash Creek Too’Yoonuv. 8 William R. Palmer, “Pahute Indian Homelands,” Utah Historical Quarterly 6, no. 3 (July 1933): 794–95. 9 Silvestre Vélez de Escalante, The Domínguez-Escalante Journal: Their Expedition through Colorado, Utah, Arizona, and New Mexico in 1776, trans. Fray Angelico Chavez, ed. Ted J. Warner (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 1995), 93–94. The Spanish reads “entramos en una cuchilla toda de mal país que está entre dos sierras altas en forma de puerto.”


cleverness in having brought us through a place so well suited for carrying out their ruse so surely and easily,” Escalante wrote ruefully. The company “continued south for a league with great hardship on account of so much rock,” then descended to Ash Creek and camped in a cottonwood grove.10 The next day the Spanish explorers passed over stretches of hilly sand. Thus the first historical description of Ash Creek Canyon already depicts its difficulty.

Intrigued by Pratt’s discovery of iron in southern Utah, Brigham Young soon sent an “Iron Mission” to the area, and this group founded Parowan in January 1851. Later in the year, Mormons expanded southward to Cedar City. In the spring of 1852, they founded the first Fort Harmony, close to modern Ash Creek Reservoir.14 John D. Lee led Fort 10 Ibid. Ted J. Warner places this camp 2.4 miles north of Pintura. 11 Dale Lowell Morgan, Jedediah Smith and the Opening of the West (Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill, 1953), 197, 238. 12 William B. Smart and Donna T. Smart, eds., Over the Rim, The Parley P. Pratt Exploring Expedition to Southern Utah, 1849–50 (Logan: Utah State University Press, 1999), 180–81, 86–88. 13 Ibid., 180–81. 14 Morris A. Shirts and Kathryn H. Shirts, A Trial Furnace: Southern Utah’s Iron Mission (Provo: Brigham Young University Press, 2001); Bleak, “Annals,” 17, CHL; Daughters of the Utah Pioneers, Washington County Chapter, Under Dixie Sun: A History of Washington County by Those Who Loved Their Forbears (Panguitch, UT: Garfield County News, 1950), 127.

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John D. Lee. —

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Harmony; Peter Shirts was another resident.15 Both of these resilient frontiersmen would help pioneer the Black Ridge route. On January 27, 1852, Lee headed a company of twelve men (including John Steele and Zadok Judd), four wagons, and thirteen horses that explored the Virgin and Santa Clara Rivers.16 As they approached Ash Creek Canyon, Lee wrote, “The country for the next 15 miles appears forbidding being a low range of rocky broken mountains covered with brush and service bushes.” Not far into Ash Creek Canyon, 15 For Lee, see Juanita Brooks, John Doyle Lee: Zealot, Pioneer Builder, Scapegoat (Logan: Utah State University Press, 1985). For Peter Shirts, see Peter Shurtz Jr., “History of Peter Shirts,” from Ambrose Schurtz, “History of the Shurtz or Shirts Family,” typescript, MSS A 1746, Utah State Historical Society, Salt Lake City, Utah (hereafter USHS); Shirts and Shirts, A Trial Furnace, index. 16 John D. Lee, letter to the editor, February 20, 1852, published as “Letter from Elder John D. Lee,” Deseret News, April 3, 1852.

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The Mormons arrived on the scene some twenty years later, in 1849, when the Parley P. Pratt expedition explored southern Utah. Pratt arrived at the modern site of Parowan with his full company, then left his wagons and part of the company there, while he proceeded southward with twenty men on horseback. According to Pratt’s official report, on December 29, the company was “forced to leave the stream [Ash Creek] and take to our right over the hills for many miles. Country rough and marred with huge stones, the North side a foot deep with snow, on the Summit and South side very miry. . . . Night found us encamped on a stream in a rough broken country.”12 This camp might have been near the site of modern Pintura.13 Just as the name “ridge” implies a hill of some sort, the Pratt report talks of a summit dividing the north and south sides of a formation.

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The next white visitor to Ash Creek Canyon might have been Jedediah Smith, as he traveled from the Great Salt Lake to California in the late summers of 1826 and 1827.11 Unfortunately, he left no detailed descriptions of Ash Creek Canyon.

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ROADS OVER THE BLACK RIDGE ROAD DATES LOCATION

Hamblin-Judd Road First used spring 1856 Apparently just west of Ash Creek

Road east of Ash Creek (sometimes called the County Road)

Arrowhead Highway 1924–1925 West of Ash Creek, following the 1862 Duffin Road

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June 1868–1924

East of Ash Creek

U.S. Highway 91 1926 West of Ash Creek (formerly Arrowhead Highway) Interstate-15 Late 1960s / early 1970s–present they decided that wagons could not proceed and left them there, with some guards. Another part of the company proceeded onward on foot and with horses. Lee described passing by “low broken sand mounds” and “sand hills.” He thought that his group came near Ash Creek’s conjunction with LaVerkin Creek (where the banks of both creeks were three hundred feet high, in Lee’s estimation); however, this is problematic, because both creeks reach the Virgin at about the same place, near the modern town of LaVerkin. According to Lee, they ascended a “mound” here and saw the Virgin River in the distance. Apparently they now sent back for the wagons and successfully brought them over the Black Ridge, a historic event. Five miles later, Lee and company came to a welcome landmark in the lower Ash Creek Canyon route: “the Grapevines springs.” These springs “boil up” at the foot of a sand mound and “moisten about one acre of land which is completely interlocked with vines,” Lee wrote, adding, prophetically, “Good place to camp.” The area would later become a welcome oasis for travelers who ventured south of the rim. (For example, George A. Smith wrote in 1857: “Our slow progress caused us to suffer for want of water; when we reached the ‘Grapevine’ Springs it was regarded by me as one of the pleasantest spots upon the earth—a little cool water in a desert!”)17 Lee 17 George A. Smith, “History of the Settling of Southern Utah,” in Turley, Selected Collections, 1:3.

West of Ash Creek

left the wagons here and with a few men explored the Virgin and Santa Clara rivers. That summer of 1852, a group of seven men, led by John Calvin Lazelle Smith and John Steele and including John D. Lee, explored east of Parowan in the Sevier Valley. They followed LaVerkin Creek southwest until the terrainforced them to leave the creek, and they eventually came to the convergence of the Virgin River, LaVerkin Creek, and Ash Creek. There Steele and Lee followed their former route north over the Black Ridge.18 When the members of the Southern Indian mission arrived at the first Fort Harmony on May 2, 1854, a new chapter in Dixie history began, as some of them hoped to proselytize the numerous Paiutes who farmed on the Virgin and Santa Clara rivers in the Dixie basin. In mid-May, Brigham Young and other LDS general authorities visited the Iron Mission and helped to locate and lay out the second Fort Harmony, a few miles northwest of the first Fort Harmony.19 Young asked the men who had visited Dixie whether “a wagon road could be made across the Black Ridge down to the Rio Virgen.” If this is 18 J. C. L. Smith and John Steele, letter to the editor, June 26, 1852, published as “Letter from Parowan,” Deseret News, August 7, 1852; J. Cecil Alter, ed., “Journal of Priddy Meeks,” Utah Historical Quarterly 10 (1942): 187. 19 New Harmony, west of this, was laid out in 1862. Only New Harmony is inhabited today.


reported correctly, we see that Young already had an interest in the territory south of Harmony. Those who knew the Black Ridge doubted that such a road could be made: “Their replies were very discouraging.”20 Despite the fact that Lee had apparently crossed the ridge with wagons in 1852, no recognized road existed there yet.

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However, James Bleak noted that “notwithstanding this report, President [Heber C.] Kimball prophesied that [a] wagon road would be made from Harmony over the Black Ridge.”21 Thomas Brown’s contemporary report of the LDS hierarchy’s visit does not mention this prophecy. However, if Kimball did say something like this, it would demonstrate that Utahns viewed the idea of a road over the Black Ridge as close to miraculous.

On June 7, Rufus Allen led another venture southwards, as recorded in the diaries of Hamblin and, especially, Thomas Brown. Guided by three Indians, the company left the second Fort Harmony, and then crossed Ash Creek near the old fort. Brown wrote, For the first four miles till we again struck Ash Creek we had a long rocky bench or rolling hill then descending around the same, by a long steep rocky hill, thence for some miles on a good level bottom of Ash Creek, then over other rolling ridges of sand and rocky bolders alternately till at near sundown 16 miles from old carrel [the first Fort Harmony] & 20 from our camp [the second Harmony] we reached Toker’s Wickeups [near modern Toquerville]. 20 Bleak, “Annals,” 23, CHL. 21 Ibid.

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The Indian missionaries soon began exploring the surrounding country. David Lewis, first counselor to Rufus Allen, leader of the missionaries, led a company that included Jacob Hamblin south over the Black Ridge in late May 1854.22On the twenty-sixth, “after passing over an unbroken & rocky road down south,” the party “camped on 2 springs of good water—plenty of grapes vines around & called these Grapevine Springs.”23 Peter Shirts. —

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According to Brown, then, after leaving old Fort Harmony, the group first encountered a long rocky bench or hill, possibly the north face of the Black Ridge. They “struck” Ash Creek again, and then stayed close to the creek while descending “a long steep rocky hill” (possibly the ridge’s south face). A “good level bottom of Ash Creek” followed it. Finally, the group traveled through a stretch of sand and boulders until they came to the area of modern Toquerville. This account, while vague, shows that the Black Ridge included rocky and steep descents and ascents. The company proceeded to visit the Paiute population centers at Toquerville and the Santa Clara, and then returned to Harmony via the California Road.24

22 Juanita Brooks, ed., Journal of the Southern Indian Mission; Diary of Thomas D. Brown (Logan: Utah State University Press, 1972), 38–39; Jacob Hamblin, Diary, June 7 [sic], holograph, Jacob Hamblin Papers, 1850–1877, MS 1951, CHL; Todd M. Compton, A Frontier Life: Jacob Hamblin, Explorer and Indian Missionary (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 2013).

On October 23, 1854, David Lewis led another exploring trip, which included Hamblin, Shirts, and two Paiutes. The company crossed the Black

23 Brooks, Journal of the Southern Indian Mission, 39.

24 Ibid., 43.

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Ridge, and then turned east up the east fork of the Virgin, possibly becoming the earliest explorers of the southern part of modern Zion Park.25 Lewis’s report of the trip, however, barely mentioned the Black Ridge, for the hazards of that territory were becoming well known.

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The next crossing of the Black Ridge occurred in the spring of 1856 and represented an epic accomplishment: a company took wagons from Santa Clara, across the future sites of St. George and Washington, along the Virgin, and then up Ash Creek Canyon. Jacob Hamblin led this company, which included the first known white woman to traverse the ridge, Mary Minerva Judd, the wife of the Mormon Battalion veteran Zadok Knapp Judd. She left three accounts of the experience.26 Though Hamblin and Mary Judd documented this important pioneering expedition, the event is not well known. Rufus Allen had sent Hamblin and four other missionaries (Thales Haskell, Ira Hatch, Samuel Knight, and Augustus Hardy) to live among the Paiutes in Santa Clara in early December 1854. In the late summer of the following year, Hamblin brought his and other families from northern Utah to Santa Clara. He also recruited the Zadok and Mary Minerva Judd family to leave Parowan and help him settle Santa Clara. (Zadok was his brother-in-law.) The Judds arrived at the newly built “Fort Clara” in March 1856. After only a day in this settlement, an express arrived from Harmony with news of an Indian outbreak in northern Utah, and all the missionaries were called back to Harmony. Faced with this directive, the missionaries decided against returning by the California road, which they felt might be snowy and open to Indian attack. Instead, they looked eastward. “Thare was aneu [a new] rout through the Mountains and no snow of onley half the distance but we had allways herd that it was impasable for wagons,” Hamblin wrote. Nevertheless, “We all felt like trying it,” an attitude typical of these pioneers.27 Even if this route was commonly viewed as “impasable” for wagons, many of these missionaries had crossed the Black Ridge 25 Lewis’s diary is excerpted in a November 9, 1854, letter that Thomas Brown sent to Brigham Young; see Brooks, Journal of the Southern Indian Mission, 93–97. 26 Mary Minerva Dart Judd, “Autobiography of Mary Minerva Dart Judd, 1879–1926,” holograph, Huntington Library, San Marino, California (hereafter HL). This holograph contains two different versions of Judd’s autobiography, which I will refer to as “autobiography one” and “autobiography two.” “Autobiography three” is a typescript, copy in my possession. 27 Hamblin, Diary, March 1856, CHL.

multiple times, on foot or on horse, so they knew Ash Creek Canyon fairly well. Zadok Judd, for instance, trekked through the area with John D. Lee in 1852. The party—which consisted of four wagons, eight mounted men, Mary Judd, and possibly other women—set out eastward. On the first day after leaving Fort Clara, they traveled five miles and camped at a spring above modern St. George. “There was nothing inviting on the surrounding benches,” Mary wrote, though a plat of grass below the springs provided a welcome variation from the desert landscape. The next day, the horsemen rode ahead while the wagon company “made a wagon track” over a black ridge that lay between modern St. George and Washington.28 They reached the Virgin River, nooned there, and continued on, camping at some springs that night. On the third day, they ate lunch at a creek with a few cottonwoods and then camped that night on a creek with more cottonwoods—which they named Big and Little Cottonwood creeks. On the next day they passed Grapevine Springs; they must have camped near Ash Creek shortly thereafter. On the fifth day, the company faced the Black Ridge. “With quite a precipitous ascent of two miles, and covered with boulders of black volcanic rock, interspersed with brush and cedar trees [Utah juniper], it looked impractical for wagons,” wrote Mary.29 Nevertheless, “Br knite [Samuel Knight] and Colman [Prime Coleman] ^thales hascal^ [rode] a head to serch out the best track for us to follow.”30 With “great labor,” the missionaries found a route and probably cleared the boulders that were movable out of the way; the hard-pressed oxen then pulled the wagons to the summit. Then the company “passed down its western face a further distance of two miles,” onto Ash Creek.31 Those members of the party in wagons made camp, but the horsemen rode ahead to Harmony. They returned with news that the women of Harmony were preparing a celebratory meal for this intrepid group of pioneers—a welcome reward after their grueling adventure. Mary Judd was proud of this accomplishment: “We obeyed orders and made the first wagon tracks that there ever was made 28 Not to be confused with the Black Ridge in Ash Creek Canyon. Quotes from Mary Judd, autobiography three. 29 Ibid. 30 Mary Judd, autobiography two, HL. 31 Mary probably meant “northern” or “northwestern.” Mary Judd, autobiography three.


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south of harmony ^over the black ridge.^ We travelled about 75 miles without any wagon track,” she wrote.32

When Zadok and Mary Judd returned to Santa Clara, traveling with Oscar Hamblin, they surmounted the Black Ridge again. This time they had to navigate the rocky route in a heavy downpour of rain. “This made the ground so slippery that in steep and sliding places, it was difficult to keep our wagons right side up,” Mary wrote.35 Just so, bad weather often compounded the danger, difficulty, and misery of the Black Ridge passage.36

According to Hamblin, “We looked out the rout . . . and arived safe in Harmony in 4 Days which surprised some of the Brothren.”33 Later travelers through Ash Creek Canyon complained freely even when they had a defined, if primitive, road. But the Santa Clara Indian missionaries had brought four wagons over the Black Ridge without a road. They were considerably the worse for the journey. Mary Judd said they “stoped [at Fort Harmony] to fix up as we had torne our close [clothes] terably travling thrue brush and rockes with no road of any kinde.”34 32 Judd, autobiography one, 4, HL. Lee apparently brought wagons through Ash Creek Canyon in 1852, but there was certainly no wagon road in the canyon. In the second autobiography, Mary wrote “We . . . packed up and started over the mountaines where there had no wagon had ever travelled before.” 33 Hamblin, Diary, 68–69, CHL. 34 Judd, autobiography two, 11–12, HL.

John Woodhouse apparently used this same route over the Black Ridge route in the spring of 1857, when Indian difficulties made travelling the California Trail dangerous. “The new route proved very rough,” Woodhouse wrote, “and for six miles over the Black Ridge all the wheels of the wagon 35 Judd, autobiography three. 36 In his autobiography, George Hicks recorded getting trapped by a major snowstorm at the Black Ridge for four days. Polly Aird, Jeff Nichols, and Will Bagley, eds., Playing with Shadows: Voices of Dissent in the Mormon West (Norman, OK: Arthur H. Clark, 2011), 171–72.

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could not touch the ground at once.”37 This is hyperbole, but the Black Ridge demanded hyperbole.

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At about this time, Brigham Young was contemplating founding a cotton-growing colony in Dixie. Perhaps in preparation for this outpost, on December 1, 1856, the Iron County Court appointed Peter Shirts to the office of county road commissioner.38 He had apparently located a road through Ash Creek Canyon near the Pine Valley Mountains on the west and reported to LDS church authorities that its only drawback was a canyon 165 feet deep and a thousand feet across. When asked how he would get by this, Shirts reportedly said, “Leap it.” Though Shirts did excavate a dugway through the canyon, it was so dangerous that travelers often had to lower their wagons by ropes down a sheer cliff and then climb a steep incline on the other side.39 The site became known as “Peter’s Leap,” and the creek at the bottom of the canyon is still called Leap Creek.40 Evidently, Peter Shirts did not create the first road through Ash Creek Canyon. According to John Woodhouse, “The road to our Dixie, over the Black Ridge was considered so bad that Brother Peeter Shirts had been appointed to explore a better one.” The road that was “so bad” was apparently the Hamblin-Judd route, which had preceded Shirts’s road. Woodhouse continued, “He [Shirts] explored one nearer the foot of the mountains, and as he expressed it, it had one bad place in it, namely the so called Peeters Leap. But this proved so bad that it more than compensated for all the rest.”41 In fact, the historian Morris Shirts concluded that Peter Shirts’s road would have easily been the best of all the Black Ridge roads, if Leap Creek Canyon had not interposed a serious barrier to wagons halfway down it.42 The people who founded Washington in May 1857 had access to Peter’s road, but they did not universally appreciate it. When the “Texas Company”— probably a group of settlers from Texas and other 37 John Woodhouse, John Woodhouse: His Pioneer Journal, 1830–1916, comp. James Mercer Kirkham, Kate Woodhouse Kirkham, and family (Salt Lake City: Elbert C. Kirkham, 1952), 27, electronic resource, CHL.

southern states led by Robert D. Covington—saw Peter’s Leap, they proposed killing Peter Shirts. They made the crossing only by chaining several wagons together, letting “the hind one hold back the front ones.”43 When Shirts presented a bill for his work at the June 1857 session of the Iron County Court, the court flatly rejected it and accused him of spending money unwisely, causing the county a “total loss” of three hundred dollars. (Presumably this bill went beyond what they had previously authorized.) The county court promptly released Shirts from his road-building duties and appointed John D. Lee and Elisha H. Groves “to locate road to Washington ‘City’ which Peter Shirts late County Road Commissioner laid on the track called Peter’s Leap.” The court apparently appropriated fifty dollars for work on the section of the road south of Grapevine Springs.44 In subsequent county court records, acts relating to road building appear frequently: the Black Ridge road constantly needed repair, new roads replaced inadequate ones, and other roads soon replaced Peter Shirts’s route. Roads made trade, food supplies, and communication with the outside world available, and they were a major concern for all the early pioneer communities in southern Utah. In August 1857, the LDS apostle George A. Smith toured the southern Utah communities and used Shirts’s road, as improved by Lee, Groves, and others. In one widely quoted description of the Black Ridge, Smith called the passage “the most desperate piece of road that I ever traveled in my life, the whole ground for miles being covered with stones, volcanic rock, cobble heads . . . and in places, deep sand.”45 James Martineau, who traveled in the same company, wrote “Went down ‘Peter’s Leap,’ which is a narrow road down the side of a deep gulch about 100 or 200 feet deep, the sides being perpendicular. The wagons were let down by ropes and men holding behind, the wheels sometimes dropping down two or three feet at a time. Got safely down. Stopped at Grape Vine Springs for the night.”46 43 Woodhouse, Pioneer Journal, 29.

38 Bleak, “Annals,” 55, CHL.

44 Bleak, “Annals,” 55–56, CHL.

39 Seegmiller, Iron County, 379 (quotation); Shirts, “The Black Ridge: Extracts,” appendix, “Probable Road History,” SLSUU. I have not yet found an early source for this story.

45 George A. Smith, “History of the Settling of Southern Utah,” in Turley, Selected Collections, 1:3.

40 Bleak, “Annals,” 56, CHL. 41 Woodhouse, Pioneer Journal, 28–29. 42 Shirts, “Black Ridge: Extracts,” appendix, “Probable Road History.”

46 Donald G. Godfrey and Rebecca S. Martineau-McCarty, eds., An Uncommon Pioneer: The Journals of James Henry Martineau 1828–1919 (Provo: Religious Studies Center / Brigham Young University, 2008), 70. Martineau claimed that he coined the name Peter’s Leap, but if the court records quoted by Bleak are correct, the name was in use by June 1857.


Another major wave of pioneers passed through Ash Creek Canyon in late 1861, as Young sent three hundred households south to found St. George. One of these pioneers, Hugh Moon, seemed to portray the pioneers using the Hamblin-Judd road, close to Ash Creek.50 After passing the first Fort Harmony, the Moon company camped on Ash Creek. On November 30, the group crossed the creek “and struck the black Ridge which is about 3 mile of very rough road, nothing but rocks. We crossed Ash Creek 5 times, crossed the south fork and Ash Creek and camped.” The next day, he noted, Here is a road made on a back of a ridge of black rocks, a large mountain of yellow rock on the east. . . . At the bottom of the hill the road forks, the left hand goes

Moon then turned to overstatement:

As Moon’s account demonstrates, the pioneers sometimes personalized their descriptions of the Black Ridge country, viewing it as a conscious, malignant stretch of land. In fact, it did seem to have a vindictive streak. When a Swiss company passed it on their way to Santa Clara, the group’s trumpeter, George Staheli, carefully tied his cornet to the top of his wagon to protect it from harm. It somehow came loose (probably because of the wagon’s constant rattling), fell under wagon wheels, and was smashed flat.52 One 1861 company “journeyed to Ash Creek, which they crossed, and climbed the very steep road over the black volcanic ridge, on the right [west] bank of Ash Creek. After descending, they arrived at the forks of the road.” Some accounts, such as this one, seem to locate the Black Ridge just west of Ash Creek. This was apparently the Hamblin-Judd route.53 But travelers were still using Peter Shirts’s road and crossing in late 1861. Mary Ann Mansfield Bentley, one of the settlers of St. George, described crossing Peter’s Leap, unloading wagons, taking them apart, and then lowering them a piece at a time down the cliff.54 John D. Lee apparently used this route, as he reported wagon breakdowns near “Iron Mountain” 51 Ibid.

47 Ibid., 101.

52 Shirts, “Black Ridge: Excerpts,” 15.

48 Bleak, “Annals,” 79, CHL; see also the County Court actions of December 27, 1859, ibid., 76.

53 Bleak, “Annals,” 100, CHL.

49 “President Young’s Visit South,” Deseret News, June 12, 1861. 50 “A Difficult Mission: Obedient to a Call,” typescript of Hugh Moon journal, accessed May 9, 2012, http://moonfamily.4t. com/mission.html.

54 Mary Ann Mansfield Bentley, “The Family History of Mary Ann Mansfield Bentley,” typescript, 7, MSS A 1561, USHS; see also “The First Christmas in St. George,” in Daughters of Utah Pioneers, An Enduring Legacy (Salt Lake City: Daughters of Utah Pioneers, 1978), 1:166.

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After the twist, they faced two miles of sand, which sometimes reached ten inches in depth, and then came to Grapevine Springs. Marveling at the local sights—cacti and yuccas, “black nasty rocks that looked as if the Lord had made them for nothing but to bluff off our enemies and spoil the land,” and mountains of sandstone—they continued on and camped at the first Cottonwood Creek.51

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The brethren told us we should soon come to Jacob’s Twist and Johnson’s Twist, but I thought we had come to the Devil’s Twist. It was down into a sandy canyon and remarkably crooked, small rocks about the size of a load of hay.

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The next chapter in the development of the Black Ridge road occurred several months later. The March 1860 Iron County Court actions note the approval of a bill for $297, paid to Thomas W. Smith (acting as supervisor), Samuel Pollock, and John D. Lee for labor on the Black Ridge road. Further, “provision was made for the expenditure of an Appropriation made by the Legislature on the 20th of January, 1860 for road on the Black Ridge.”48 Then, on May 30, 1861, Brigham Young and an entourage of twenty-three carriages and sixty-four people traveled the Black Ridge road, going north.49 Apparently, Smith, Pollock, and Lee had built a usable road. At the same time, this trip would have given Young a clear idea of how rough it was to cross the ridge.

to Stokerville [Toquerville]. We took the right to go to Washington.

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Later, in July 1859, Martineau again accompanied Smith on a tour of southern Utah and made a nightmarish crossing of the Black Ridge. Necessity forced the company to use a “balky,” unbroken horse that “tried to run away several times over a very dangerous road—the black ridge.” In addition, it was raining. Though the party left Harmony at nine o’clock in the morning, they made slow progress, due in part to wagon wheels falling apart. They did not reach Washington until eleven p.m. that night and thus had to travel a good portion of their journey in the dark. At times, Martineau had to go in advance of the wagon train and feel on the ground with his hands for the track.47

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and the Pine Mountain foothills, between Washington and Harmony, in 1858 and 1859.55

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Clearly, complaints about the Black Ridge road continued unabated, and in 1862, Brigham Young and the local LDS apostle, Erastus Snow, directed that a new road should be built.56 Snow appointed three men, Charles Stapley Jr., Robert Lloyd, and Daniel D. McArthur, as road commissioners. On November 27, Apostle Snow traveled with the three commissioners from St. George to Harmony “and located the road . . . by way of the West side of Ash Creek, over the high volcanic ridge.”57 The road they located might have roughly followed the Hamblin-Judd route; but now, what had been nothing more than a wagon track would become a smoothed road. Accordingly, in November 1862, southern Utahns began building a road west of Ash Creek known sometimes as the Duffin Road, after Isaac Duffin, appointed superintendant of construction in 1863.58 The pioneer photographer William H. Jackson crossed the Black Ridge using this road on January 8, 1867, and wrote, “Road very rough over the ascending part, consisting mostly of a good dug way. Very rock[y], alternating with deep sand.” Even though the Black Ridge was rough, rocky, and sandy, Jackson viewed the new road as good.59 The people of Dixie built this road as a communitarian project, just like a public building or an irrigation ditch. All roads in southern Utah were built this way, but the Black Ridge road was simply the most difficult road to create and keep in working condition. In 1862, as the new pioneers began to settle in Dixie, Snow made sure they understood and would support the concept of “labor tithing.” (As southern pioneers often had no hard money, they could pay tithing, taxes, or assessments by communal work, including working on roads.)60 Church leaders required all settlements in southern Utah to contribute money or labor or both to the effort, even though some of the towns, such as Cedar City, 55 Robert Glass Cleland and Juanita Brooks, eds., A Mormon Chronicle: the Diaries of John D. Lee, 1848–1876, vol. 1 (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 1983), 1:163, 166, 185, 196, 207. 56 Bleak, “Annals,” 148, CHL. 57 Ibid., 161–62 (quotation), 163. 58 Larson, I Was Called to Dixie, 517. 59 William Henry Jackson, The Diaries of William Henry Jackson, ed. LeRoy R. Hafen and Ann W. Hafen (Glendale, CA: Arthur H. Clark Company, 1959), as cited in Seegmiller, Iron County, 379. 60 Ibid., 149, 155; Alder and Brooks, Washington County, 226.

did not depend directly on the road.61 The county court judged a ten-hour day’s work on a road to be the equivalent of a two-dollar poll tax.62 Southern Utahns also received funds for road building from the territorial legislature at times. However, it was not easy to maintain the Duffin Road, and it became “almost impassable.”63 Therefore, at an LDS conference held on November 1, 1866, Snow proposed making a new road—now on the east side of Ash Creek. (The fact that the Dixie saints kept moving the road to either side of Ash Creek shows that the Black Ridge continued to baffle them. Each time they laid out a new road, it required a monumental expenditure of money and human effort.) They received an allotment from the territorial legislature and set to work.64 On June 29, 1868, Snow wrote to Brigham Young, “Work upon the Black Ridge Road is being prosecuted to completion.”65 Travelers began using the road—which was sometimes known as the County Road—that same month, though it was still incomplete.66 In 1868, the legislature spent $4,551 on this road, a substantial sum for that place and time.67 In 1870, the photographer Charles Savage, traveling to Dixie with President Young, expressed his appreciation for the new road: “A magnificent road has been made down Ash Creek avoiding the black ridge costing an immense amount of cash and labor, we soon reached Bellevue, thence on over sand and rocks to Harrisburg.”68 Morris Shirts referred to the 1868 road as “a model of early pioneer roadbuilding. It was the first attempt at establishing ‘sensible grades.’ Equipment other than picks and shovels was used. The road was built to last, and was

61 Bleak, “Annals,” 163, CHL. 62 Larson, I Was Called to Dixie, 515. 63 Erastus Snow, report to the Territorial Assembly, in Journals of the Legislative Assembly of the Territory of Utah, Eighteenth Annual Session, for the Year 1869 (Salt Lake City: George Q. Cannon, [1869]), 71; Seegmiller, Iron County, 379–80; Shirts, “Black Ridge: Extracts,” appendix, “Probable Road History.” 64 Bleak, “Annals,” 358, 372, CHL; Ezra C. Knowlton, History of Highway Development in Utah ([Salt Lake City]: Utah State Department of Highways, [1964]), 236; Seegmiller, Iron County, 380. 65 Erastus Snow to Brigham Young, June 29, 1868, in Bleak, “Annals,” 399, 412–13 (quotation), CHL. 66 Erastus Snow, report to Territorial Assembly, 71. 67 Bleak, “Annals,” 446, CHL. 68 “From the Diary of Charles R. Savage,” in Kate Carter, comp., Our Pioneer Heritage (Salt Lake City: Daughters of Utah Pioneers, 1958–), 14:41.


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constantly improved.”69 Indeed, the 1868 “County Road” would serve southern Utah for the next fifty-six years.

231 Kumen Jones driving a carriage on the road east of Ash Creek, 1898. —

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Despite Savage’s enthusiasm, the County Road was still very rough and required navigating a dugway down cliffs with heart-stopping drop-offs. In late 1872, Elizabeth Wood Kane and her husband Thomas Kane traveled to St. George with Brigham Young. Elizabeth memorably described the hair-raising descent through Ash Creek Canyon in Twelve Mormon Homes.70 “We were told to prepare for eighteen miles of rough road when we left Kannarra,” she wrote, “and we certainly encountered them. We were fairly in the rocks, and the lava blocks are the flintiest stones I ever heard ring against horse-shoe and wheel-tire.” The line of carriages came to “a great sloping down or moorland, sparsely studded with yuccas,” and Elizabeth relaxed as the road ahead looked entirely uninteresting. 69 Shirts, “The Black Ridge: Extracts,” appendix, “Probable Road History.” 70 Elizabeth Wood Kane, Twelve Mormon Homes: Visited in Succession on a Journey through Utah to Arizona (Salt Lake City: Tanner Trust Fund / University of Utah Library, 1974, first pub. 1874), 123–26.

Then the carriage ahead of the Kanes stopped, and its driver came back to the Kanes with a message from Young: “Please watch yon crack, Mrs. Kane.” The plain seemed to have “a fold or wrinkle in it,” and Elizabeth watched it out of politeness. Then she saw that it was “a crack in the earth” and the road was running toward it. “A few minutes more, and we are winding down a narrow road painfully excavated along the side of what I now see to be a chasm, sheer down which I can look hundreds of feet—and I much prefer not looking!” she wrote. But teased by her husband and children, she gazed down in “fascinated terror.” Far below was a tiny stream, Ash Creek. “We wind in and out of the corners of the great chasm, making short half-turns,” Elizabeth wrote. When they reached the bottom, the Mormons told the Kanes that they had descended a thousand feet.


The Kanes stayed the night at one of Elizabeth’s “twelve Mormon homes” in Bellevue (modern Pintura), which had been founded as a town in 1868.71 Bellevue was the first town south of the rim, and it would become a welcome stopping place after travelers braved the Black Ridge dugway.

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Angus Cannon, an LDS church leader, visited southern Utah in 1869, and in a letter to the Deseret News dated March 22, 1869, he gave a similar description of the road east of Ash Creek:

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In our descent we found ourselves winding around at the base of the mountain east of north ash creek a dugway made in a serpentine form amongst the black masses of volcanic rock from which the traveler in a very perilous position can gaze upon ash creek as it winds its course southward through a deep chasm several hundred feet below this dugway.72 Despite the “perilous” nature of this road, it received extensive use. During the boom years of the mining town of Silver Reef, from 1878 to 1882, as many as 200 wagons, laden with silver bullion, might traverse it in a single day. Morris Shirts found broken springs, horse shoes, and silver ore samples on the road in modern times, all evidence of its frequent use during the silver boom. During this period, it was an economic lifeline for southern Utah.73 Partially because of this heavy use, the road required continual upkeep. In 1878 the territorial legislature awarded southern Utah three thousand dollars “for widening dugways, removing rocks from the roads, and graveling or otherwise covering what is known as the Grapevine Sand, and generally repairing and straightening the Territorial Road from the head of the Black Ridge Dugway . . . through Bellevue and Leeds, to St. George.”74 Thus the “County Road” became a one-lane dirt road with turnouts. Travelers, freighters, ranchers, and tourists continued to dread the Black Ridge stretch of road, though 71 Bleak, “Annals,” 448, CHL; Althea Hafen, “Bellevue (Pintura),” in Under Dixie Sun, 357–59.

Elizabeth Kane, circa 1872. —

harold b. lee library

they had no other option but to use it. Then in 1924, a new road was built west of Ash Creek, “along the old pioneer route” laid down by Erastus Snow and the Road Commission in 1862, which might, in turn, have followed the Hamblin-Judd route.75 With this road, the pioneer Black Ridge era came to an end. Arrowhead Highway and Highway 91 followed this route, as does today’s Interstate 15.76 As we drive effortlessly and quickly along I-15 today, it is far from easy to imagine the difficulties of the old Ash Creek Canyon roads, the ridge strewn

72 Letter from “Nonnac,” Deseret News, April 7, 1869. 73 Shirts, “Black Ridge: Excerpts,” 19. 74 Journals of the Legislative Assembly of the Territory of Utah, Twenty-Third Session, for the year 1878, as quoted in Alder and Brooks, Washington County, 226; see also Laws, Memorials and Resolution of the Territory of Utah, Passed at the Twenty-Third Session of the Legislative Assembly (Salt Lake City: Star Books and Printing Office, 1878), 57.

75 Knowlton, Highway Development, 236; Seegmiller, Iron County, 387; Angus M. Woodbury, “A History of Southern Utah and Its National Parks,” Utah Historical Quarterly 12 (1944): 205. 76 Edward Leo Lyman, “The Arrowhead Trails Highway: The Beginnings of Utah’s Other Route to the Pacific Coast,” Utah Historical Quarterly 67, no. 3 (1999): 257.


with boulders that Mary Judd, Jacob Hamblin, and other pioneers of Santa Clara had to surmount and descend in spring 1856; the wagons breaking down on jagged basaltic rocks as pioneers made their slow way to St. George in late 1861; the disassembled wagons lowered down the steep ravine of Peter’s Leap; or the precipitous dugway with its terrifying drop-off to Ash Creek that so unnerved Elizabeth Kane in 1872.

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As Joseph Fish wrote, “The next generation will never know how their parents came to Dixie without roads, just rocks and sand.”77 Creating roads in Dixie—and keeping them usable—presented just as much a challenge and a communal accomplishment as did carrying out cooperative economic ventures and erecting civic and religious buildings in town centers. If the St. George Tabernacle and Temple are testaments to early Mormon communitarian culture, the Black Ridge roads are no less so.

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77 Joseph Fish, “History of Enterprise,” 248, typescript, SLSUU, as cited in Seegmiller, Iron County, 380.

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Bernardo de Miera y Pacheco’s map (detail) of the 1776 Dominguez-Escalante expedition. This famous map depicts the Black Ridge area above the Rio Sulfureo or Virgin River. —

utah state historical society

Todd Compton is the author of In Sacred Loneliness (1997) and A Frontier Life (2013). He lives in Northern California, but visits his relatives in Utah every summer.


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The Palmer and Driggs Collections at Southern Utah University By

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If your research interests begin in a time when trails crossed the vast American West or, on the other hand, if your family’s migration trail ended in southwestern Utah, there is an archive that warrants your investigation in Cedar City at Southern Utah University (SUU). The Gerald R. Sherratt Library Special Collections Department celebrated fifty years in 2013. Its mission is to collect, preserve, and provide access to unique and often rare materials for historical research. As the regional archival repository for southern Utah, as well as the university’s institutional archives, it contains a wide variety of historical manuscripts, photo-images, maps, artifacts, newspapers, and microfilms of government records from five counties. SUU’s Special Collections has focused, in part, on the Paiute Indians and the community development of southern Utah. This focus began in 1963 with the acquisition of the papers of the local historian and volunteer state archivist William R. Palmer, although Palmer himself had much broader interests. He documented the growth of villages and cities and the lives of Utah pioneers who crossed the American continent; Palmer participated himself in

LDS missionary work in Indian Territory and studied his own family roots in Wales and England. For more than fifty years, thousands of researchers have used Palmer Collection photographs and have quoted Palmer’s stories, articles, and speeches. During the early 1940s and 1950s, he delivered radio programs on the local station, KSUB, where he shared biographical sketches of “Men You Should Know” and later, “Forgotten Chapters of History.” The topics of these programs ranged from grazing grants and fence watching to pioneer postal problems and iron mining. Recordings of the “Forgotten Chapters” are accessible digitally through the Special Collections Digital Library. The Palmer Register can be searched at archive.li.suu.edu/archive/ index.jsp?d=Ms.1, and more than 1,500 images collected by Palmer are online at contentdm.li.suu. edu/cdm/landingpage/collection/palmer. Dr. Howard R. Driggs had similar interests to Palmer; the two were lifelong colleagues, dating from the time that Driggs taught in Cedar City at the turn of the twentieth century. The Sherratt Library acquired Driggs’s papers from his estate in 2004. Although there are more than two hundred collections in the archives at SUU, the Driggs and Palmer


Tom Parashont and three boys in Cedar City, 1947. —

Driggs’s Collection is described at li.suu.edu/page/ special-digital-collections-howard-r-driggs-collection-about. It is searchable at archive.li.suu.edu/ archive/driggs.html. What unique materials can be studied in these collections by coming to the Sherratt Library in Cedar City? First, many stories and articles (some of them unpublished) about education and literature, the teaching of religious principles, and local, state, and national history—not to mention Native American legends. Second, photographs, sketches, paintings, artifacts, memorabilia, commemorative coins, and souvenirs that celebrate the Old West, wagon trains, fairs, and the monuments placed along the trails of the Old West. Palmer worked with Driggs to mark the Old Spanish Trail across Nevada, Utah, Colorado, and New Mexico in 1950.

The Sherratt Library’s Special Collections room is open for research Monday through Friday from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. or by appointment by calling 435-5867945. The Library website is www.li.suu.edu.

Janet Seegmiller will retire this summer after fifteen years as Special Collections librarian at the Sherratt Library. This has been a time of unprecedented growth and technological change in the Special Collections and Archives Department.

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Fourth, seventy years of correspondence between Palmer and Driggs and their business associates, historians, historical societies in many states, and LDS church leaders. Driggs served as the president of both the Oregon Trail Memorial Association and its successor, the American Pioneer Trails Association (APTA), and he kept the files of these associations. These files contain minutes, conference proceedings, announcements, publications, and correspondence that document the work of these groups and affiliated societies. With William Henry Jackson on the APTA staff, the trails group produced maps showing the Pony Express Trail and the Oregon Trail, as well as the collector’s book, Westward America (1942). Prentice-Hall first published Palmer’s book, Why the North Star Stands Still, and Other Indian Legends, in 1957; the Zion Natural History Association reissued it in 1978.

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Driggs’s educational pursuits took him to New York City, where he earned a doctorate and became a professor of English education. He also had a parallel career as a researcher, author, and advocate, and as a national leader in preserving America’s trails. He wrote and edited books for school children about traders, explorers, freighters, pioneers, miners, and rangers in World Book’s Pioneer Life series. Driggs’s associates and coauthors included the ox-team pioneer Ezra Meeker and the pioneer artist and photographer William Henry Jackson, as well as handcart pioneers, Pony Express riders, and trails experts.

Third, early southern Utah church records, oral histories and other documents about the national parks, the ledgers of the Deseret Iron Mining Company, and documents by and about Native Americans.

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collections form the foundation of the materials pertaining to historic trails and the settlement of the West.

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photographed by william r. palmer. sherratt library

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Robert Newton Baskin and the making of modern Utah

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Norman: Arthur H. Clark Company, 2013. 408 pp. Cloth, $45.00

In my view, the most significant portions of John Gary Maxwell’s Robert Newton Baskin are his essays on Baskin’s life after Wilford Woodruff issued the Manifesto and the Mormons began the long process of ending the practice of polygamy. Maxwell tells us how Baskin left the anti-Mormon Liberal Party long before such luminaries as Orlando Powers. He reconciled himself with prominent Mormons such as George Q. Cannon and William H. King, he distinguished himself as mayor of Salt Lake City, he served as chief justice of the Utah State Supreme Court, and he worked to promote tax-supported public elementary school education in the state. As Maxwell points out, James Allen and I were two of the few who recognized Baskin’s significant role in improving Salt Lake City’s public utilities infrastructure. The city had woefully underfunded its street, sewer, and water systems prior to Baskin’s tenure as mayor. Recognizing this, he successfully promoted such needed improvements. Maxwell praises much of Baskin’s work in promoting anti-Mormon legislation before these events. Most of the bills he drafted failed to pass. Baskin wrote failed bills introduced by Illinois Senator Shelby Cullom and Iowa Congressman Isaac Struble. Instead, Congress passed two other pieces of legislation that incorporated some of Baskin’s ideas, the Poland Act (1874) and the Edmunds Act (1882). Baskin also helped to write a bill introduced by Cullom and Struble that would have enacted for the territories something like the Idaho Test Oath, which prohibited believers in polygamy from voting. Maxwell seems to have favored this bill, but it

seems to me to have been ill conceived. The Cullom-Struble bill would have permitted the disfranchisement of American citizens for their privately held beliefs rather than for their illegal acts, as the Edmunds Act did, but Congress never passed it. Personally, I am relieved that the federal government’s prosecution of illegal acts led President Wilford Woodruff to review the practice of polygamy and to receive inspiration to begin the process of abolishing polygamy. Imagine, however, the prosecution of people today under Baskin’s bill who believe in or oppose same-sex marriage or who believe in or oppose the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Perhaps the most controversial section of Maxwell’s excellent biography is the discussion of Baskin’s role in the investigation and prosecution of the perpetrators of the Mountain Meadows Massacre. Baskin believed that Brigham Young had ordered the massacre. The available literature on that question is mixed and, given the variety of ways in which historians can weigh evidence, it will most likely remain so. Juanita Brooks (The Mountain Meadows Massacre, 1950), Ronald Walker, Richard Turley, and Glen Leonard (Massacre at Mountain Meadows, 2008), and John Turner (Brigham Young, 2012) have argued that he learned of the massacre only after the horrible deed took place. Sally Denton (American Massacre, 2003) and Will Bagley (Blood of the Prophets, 2002) have written that Young ordered the massacre. Neither Baskin nor Maxwell seems to have understood that although no courts martial were held on the perpetrators, the federal government could have conducted trials with Young’s assistance as early as 1859. In 2006, I pointed out (Brigham Young, the Quorum of the Twelve, and the Latter-day Saint Investigation of the Mountain Meadows Massacre) that after trying to conduct an investigation, Young, the church leadership, and some federal officials proposed to arrange for trials at Cedar City. In 1859, the same year that Judge John Cradlebaugh investigated the massacre in Iron County, Young sent George A. Smith and Amasa Lyman to Cedar City. The two of them released the principal perpetrators from their church positions and told them to prepare for trials. At that time, expecting


In 1876, Sumner Howard, who had replaced Carey as U.S. Attorney, prosecuted Lee. Unfortunately, Lee, who did not bear the principal responsibility for the massacre, was the only one of the leaders who was convicted. In addition, William H. Dame, Isaac C. Haight, John M. Higbee, George Adair, Jr., Eliot Wilden, Samuel Jukes, Philip Klingensmith, and William C. Stewart were indicted. Lee reportedly said, “Catching is before hanging.” Klingensmith turned state’s evidence, and Dame was also caught but released for lack of evidence. Contrary to Baskin’s views, I believe that Haight bore the principal responsibility for the massacre and that he should have stood trial, but the lawmen never caught him. Maxwell quotes me correctly as pointing out that “recording history is ‘always perspectival’” (13). This book views Utah’s history from Baskin’s perspective. It is an excellent and well-written biography that deserves careful attention from the general reader and scholarly community alike. We all need to understand the role that Baskin played in the modernization of Utah. —

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Al e xa n d e r

Brigham Young University, Emeritus

A Renaissance Spaniard in Eighteenth-Century New Mexico. By

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The author and historian John L. Kessell investigates in depth each phase of Miera’s life and times with one notable gap, where the historical record fails, between his early life in Spain and his marriage in Mexico. New to readers is the unfolding of Miera’s life story, his family history, and his many achievements. However, this is more than a simple biography; it is a captivating look at New Mexico’s culture in the late Spanish colonial period. Drawing on archival records in Spain, Mexico, Great Britain, and the United States, and collaborating with New Mexico’s state historian Rick Hendricks and other scholars, Kessel brings together numerous facts about colonial New Mexico and gives us an eloquently crafted biography of this “universal” man. A “peninsular Spaniard” by birth and a member of the lower nobility (hence the title “don”), by 1776 the aging Miera had distinguished himself as a landowner, a municipal magistrate of Pecos and of the Keres district, prolific religious artist, and a mapmaker. The historically significant notations and graphic art on Miera’s maps were carefully consulted by New Mexico’s governors and studied by Spain’s Royal Corps of Engineers. (Maps of Spain’s distant borderlands were an invaluable resource to

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Those familiar with Utah’s early history know the epic story of the 1776 Dominguez-Escalante expedition, which explored a circuitous 1,500-mile route through the Four Corners region in a failed attempt to link New Mexico and California and to defend northern New Spain against the encroachments of European powers and indigenous peoples. An important member of the Spanish exploring party was the engineer-cartographer Don Bernardo de Miera y Pacheco (1713–1785). Using a compass and an astrolabe packed in his saddlebags, he made astronomical observations along the way and, later, he drew multiple, beautifully adorned maps of the terrain he surveyed, which included much of present Utah.

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Working on their own, the judges, marshal, and acting U.S. Attorney could not collect enough evidence to bring the guilty to trial in 1859, and no trial of a perpetrator occurred until 1875. At Lee’s first trial Baskin, instead of U.S. Attorney William Carey, played the principal role. Instead of working to convict Lee, however, Baskin tried to elicit testimony implicating Brigham Young and other church leaders. Nine of the twelve jurors voted to acquit Lee, so the trial resulted in a hung jury.

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to stand trial, Philip Klingensmith, John D. Lee, and Isaac C. Haight retained defense attorneys. At about the same time, territorial marshal John Kay, a prominent Mormon, offered to assist in arresting the perpetrators. Young also offered to go to Cedar City with Governor Alfred Cumming to help maintain order. Like Baskin, who came to Utah later, the sitting federal judges and the U.S. Marshal believed Young had ordered the massacre. They refused to cooperate with him, with any other Mormons, or with the governor, the U.S. Attorney, and the Superintendent of Indian Affairs who wanted to try the accused at Cedar City as well.

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the crown and to the Catholic Church.) His brilliantly painted and carved wooden and stone altar screens adorned several churches in Santa Fe and the Zuni Pueblo. Not prone to boast, however, Miera left many of his artistic renderings unsigned.

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Miera’s array of accomplishments included serving as engineer on several military campaigns, militia captain, dam construction supervisor, merchant, silver miner and metallurgist, presidial soldier, rancher, and debt collector. But he also had blemishes. In January 1755 he served time in jail for nonpayment of a loan. Furthermore, fathers Francisco Atanasio Domínguez and Silvestre Vélez de Escalante complained of his “peevish” attitude when their party, well into the journey, decided to return to Santa Fe rather than continue to Monterey. Nevertheless, in the closing years of his life, Miera became a trusted advisor to New Mexico’s famed governor, Juan Bautista de Anza. By the time of his death in 1785 Miera “had expressed himself more artistically, more notably, worn more hats, planned more projects, drawn more maps, known more Indians, explored more of the boundless Kingdom and Provinces of New Mexico than any other vecino before or after him,” writes Kessell (9). He possessed “unrivaled knowledge” of the region and its people (164). Considering the impact of Miera on the history of Utah and the Southwest, Kessell asks, shouldn’t his name grace the political or physical geography? Kessell informs us that thousands of New Mexicans today can trace their ancestry to Miera. Ironically, since he “attained a regular military rank” in Santa Fe during America’s Revolutionary War period, his descendants can apply for induction into the Daughters or Sons of the American Revolution. A generous grant from the Hispanic Genealogical Research Center of New Mexico enabled the reproduction of eighteen color illustrations in Miera y Pacheco and reduced its publication price. In addition to these color images, sixty-two black-andwhite illustrations beautifully enhance Kessell’s well-researched biography and his masterful narrative. —

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Sandy, Utah

K.

Ma ds e n

Nels Anderson’s World War I Diary E d it e d

By

A lla n

K e n t

P ow e ll

Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 2013. xxiii + 308 pp. Cloth, $34.95

Nels Anderson lived in and near Utah for only about fifteen years, yet he had a memorable impact on the state then and later when he wrote Desert Saints: The Mormon Frontier in Utah. Unfortunately, today very few Utahns know of him. Anderson arrived in Utah as a young hobo, only fifteen years old, trying to get to Panama to help build the canal. Train crews discovered him near Clover, Nevada, just west of the Utah border, riding in hiding as hobos do, and ejected him. It was 1908, and he wandered into the ranches owned by the Terry, Hafen, and Wood families. They fed Anderson, employed him, and then nominally adopted him, discovering that he was bright and a hard worker. Through the influence of these families, Anderson joined the Mormon church. He attended one year at Brigham Young University, stopped to work, and then attended Dixie College for two years, where he decided to be a lawyer. He returned to BYU with that intention but ran into a sociology professor, John C. Swenson, who changed his direction. After teaching for a year in Arizona, Anderson departed for the army in 1917 at age sixteen. While in the military for a year and a half, Anderson kept a diary, one of the very few soldiers to do so. The diary details his training in the Engineering Corps and his experiences in England, France, and Germany. He was a private during the whole period, but a most capable one. Commanders continually used him as their assistant, keeping him from most direct combat. Anderson was always on the lookout for fellow Mormons. Since he had access to records and could roam about, he found other Latter-day Saints, sometimes enough to hold a small meeting. Some he had known in Utah and others he met for the first time in Europe, but they became immediate pals. Anderson himself was a straight arrow, avoiding alcohol, gambling, and sex. It was not hard for him to do so, because he considered himself to be one of the


Anderson returned to the United States and registered at BYU, where he studied for two years. Under Swenson’s guidance, he studied sociology and soon launched into a major career at the University of Chicago, where he completed a famous master’s thesis about hobos. He then went to New York University and was employed with Harry Hopkins in the service of Franklin D. Roosevelt. He followed Hopkins to Washington, D.C., and had a long career in government. Kent Powell’s footnotes add a great deal to this work. For instance, in October 1918, Anderson’s platoon endured several hours under fire. In his words, “We had one killed, four hurt and several gassed which is quite a loss for being under cover” (131). The footnote for this entry provides the names and ranks of all these men. In his research, Powell especially looked for Utah fatalities. This book is amazing, mainly because of its subject, Anderson, but also because of Kent Powell’s marvelous footnotes and the foreword written by Charles Peterson, who discovered the diary.

D.

A ld e r

Dixie State University

Navajo Tradition, Mormon Life: R o b e r t a n d

S .

McPh e r s o n ,

Sa r a h

E .

J im

B u r a k

Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press 2012, xiv + 292 pp. Paper, $27.95

Navajo Tradition, Mormon Life follows the life of one man who has found balance between his traditional Navajo upbringing and his conversion to the Latter-day Saint faith. Jim Dandy, a descendant of traditional healers, a devout Mormon, and public intellectual contributed to his community primarily as an educator and counselor in southeastern Utah, especially among Navajos who live near the Four Corners region. Some of the greatest strengths of this book are also its weaknesses. The book stems from the collaboration of three authors and Dandy family interviewees, such as his wife and siblings; primarily, however, two of the authors’ voices are decipherable, those of Robert McPherson and Jim Dandy. The different voices allow the reader to understand Dandy’s life story on various levels. McPherson’s voice narrates and provides transitions, positioning him as an editor who frames the autobiography of Dandy. In the first section, for example, he relates Dandy’s life experiences and teachings to broader dialogues of Mormon Indian history and “religious syncretism.” McPherson amplifies Dandy’s voice, which tells his life story focused on Navajo and Mormon learning experiences and life pathways. The transitions and narration from the third-person voice (McPherson) sometimes disrupt the flow of the story. Dandy and his family’s words are italicized in most of the book, which distracts the reader, who questions why the central sections are not completely in Dandy’s first-person voice. Bighorse the Warrior (1994) provides an example of a book with effective multiple narrations. Tiana

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The diary also discusses Anderson’s experiences near the front. His group spent time near the St. Mihiel Offensive and, in October 1918, they were transferred to the Meuse-Argonne Offensive. There, the soldiers became more involved with direct combat and with bomb-making. At one point, Anderson’s commander appointed him to be a teacher for the illiterate soldiers in his unit. The reading group met daily. The soldiers were less motivated than Anderson, but he kept at it for several weeks until he had another unusual opportunity: studying at a French university, an experience that would help him later during his doctoral work.

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Yet in his diary Anderson often wrote, “I am very lonesome,” noting that he found few other soldiers with whom he had things such as books, art, and music in common (60). As he roamed through towns, he looked for historic sites and art galleries and almost always visited the local Catholic churches. As he wandered, he was always thinking. On September 5, 1918, he wrote “This war is a great silent creator of men or rather a recreator of men” (97).

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Hafens, Woods, and Terrys, and he stated clearly that he was saving himself for a wife from Utah. Anderson kept up regular mail contacts with several young women (almost every delivery brought letters from Utah girls interested in a relationship with him) and he received a page or two from the Washington County News on occasion.

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Bighorse collaborated with Noel Bennett to write the story of her father, Gus Bighorse, and chose to narrate in her father’s voice. The authors framed the story with the explanations of their approach and interpretations of Bighorse’s oral histories, but the main narrative of the book flowed nicely because of the consistent first-person voice of Bighorse. Following this model, McPherson, Dandy, and Burak could have unified the main parts of the book under the first-person voice of Dandy. The last section of Navajo Tradition demonstrates this single focus on Dandy.

Native Performers in Wild West Shows:

I also question how McPherson refers to religious syncretism. He could have considered Dandy’s perspective and ways of life as cultural and religious hybridity, which Homi Bhabha (1994) popularized as an analytical concept for understanding such transitions and the interstices between distinct life paths, Mormonism and Dinéjí Na’nitin (Navajo traditional teachings) in this case. McPherson needs to define analytical terms such as religious syncretism and his usage of them.

Native Americans, both past and present, find public performance enjoyable and a significant part of heritage preservation. Whether traditional dance and ceremony in religious expression, contemporary powwow activities steeped in cultural pride, or performances for sheer entertainment, these activities express important values. In Native Performers, Linda Scarangella McNenly examines the experiences of Indians who professionally worked in Wild West shows from 1885 to 1930 and three Mohawk families in the early twentieth century; she concludes by looking at contemporary performers in Disneyland, Paris and Buffalo Bill Days in Sheridan, Wyoming. Her purpose is to explore “Native perspectives and experiences . . . through the archival record and oral histories up to the voices of contemporary performers, revealing additional meanings and alternative interpretations of this experience” (ix). McNenly sees her work as “revisionist,” going against the prevailing attitude of many contemporary historians and anthropologists who enjoy barbecuing Native American history in the flames fueled by interpretations of colonialism of indigenous people. Wild West shows represent just one aspect of this view of imperialism, which chooses to see Indians only as a downtrodden, controlled minority without self-expression or agency.

On the other hand, Navajo Tradition succeeds in preserving a rich primary source from a man who clearly defines how he lives as Navajo and Mormon and who believes in respecting the traditions of his ancestors and times immemorial while following the Mormon path of Christianity. General readers and academics continue to debate whether Native Americans can preserve and perpetuate their distinct identity and peoplehood after adopting ways of life (such as religion) introduced by European Americans. Scholars of decolonization and postcolonial theory could take issue with the book’s brief attention to past Mormon romanticism and the application of Lamanite identity to Native Americans to justify actions such as the development of the Indian Student Placement Program, which encouraged the separation of Navajo children from their families. Dandy’s story provides another valuable perspective. It is a story that does not necessarily deny moments of struggle and conflict between the divergent identities and groupings of Mormons and Indians. It shows, instead, how they are reconciled in the life of a remarkable man and his journey, one that many Navajos of the late twentieth century shared whether or not they embraced Mormonism as Dandy did. Hopefully, this book marks only the beginning of works to come that analyze and discuss the experiences of Navajo and other Native American Mormons in the twentieth century. —

Farina

Kin g

Arizona State University

From Buffalo Bill to Euro Disney By

Li n d a

Sc a r a n g e l l a

McN e n l y

Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2012. xviii + 254 pp. Cloth, $34.95

McNenly feels differently. She argues that Native American performers chose (and choose) this profession because it allowed them freedom to express their Indianness; it provided them with opportunities to work and travel with their families, hone valued traditional skills, wear and design clothing that spoke of their heritage, and earn much-needed money in a career that held promise. While the effects of colonialism were present, these performers could still adapt, survive, and thrive. Those pursuing this type of career today feel valued and respected—almost as ambassadors representing all of Native America.


Robert

S.

Mc p h e r s o n

Utah State University, Eastern Blanding

Strangers in the Land of the Nimiipuu By R .

A lle n

V.

P a r kh a m

a n d

St e v e n

E va n s

The early chapters of Lewis and Clark detail many Nez Perce (or Nimiipuu) legends. From this oral tradition, obtained from tribal elders, the authors advance the case that the Nez Perce lived in their ancestral homeland for tens of thousands of years, dating back to the time of prehistoric animals. Having made this argument early in the book, without subtlety or apology, Parkham and Evans proceed thereafter as though it is an unquestioned fact. While this case sets the stage for the tragic loss of the Nez Perce homeland three generations later, the authors support it only tepidly in the concluding chapters. This book uses oral histories to outline the experience and culture of the Nez Perce. The narrative jumps from story to story, event to event, at times without any logical flow, consistent chronology, or transition; even the telling of Lewis and Clark’s arrival suffers. Likewise, the account provided about the era between the tribe’s acquisition of horses and the coming of the desperate Corps of Discovery is rather thin, considering the tremendous significance of that time. Notwithstanding, the authors provide a wealth of information on the Nez Perce, their homeland, and the time the expedition members spent among them. The Nez Perce initially had planned to kill Lewis and Clark and their men. This would have made them the strongest and best-armed tribe in all the

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A generation ago, the historian James P. Ronda reversed the trend of looking at Native peoples through the eyes of whites in his groundbreaking work, Lewis and Clark among the Indians (1984). Allen Parkham and Steven Evans have drawn that focus even more sharply with their new study, Lewis and Clark among the Nez Perce, which carefully examines the Lewis and Clark journals and oral interviews from Nez Perce tribal members.

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One might ask, “Does this ‘voice’ still exist? Is it important for Indians today to express cultural pride?” The answer is a resounding “yes.” While Wild West shows constitute only a small but important part of the answer, one finds the same motivations from the past in public performance now. Take, for instance, the powwow circuits that extend not only across the United States but also into Europe. These gatherings are much more than people wearing traditional dress and competing for prizes. They are events invested with cultural pride, heritage, family values, traditional skills, sociability, and religious aspects that speak to the American Indian experience. McNenly’s work is significant for that reason. She has identified values important to Native Americans and shown that, far from being the trampled remnants of a “colonial period,” they are still charting their future and finding meaning in a long-standing, ever-changing heritage.

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More than thirty pages of notes provide extensive documentation in support of the book’s thesis, which is supported by a scholarly tone accessible to the layperson. My only criticism is of the author’s stated purpose to use oral history and the Native voice to provide an insider’s perspective. Only two chapters truly attempt this and, even in those chapters, there is no real, intense Indian view. Given her goal, McNenly misses a number of easily accessible opportunities. In the case of early Wild West shows, such as Buffalo Bill’s, plenty of Indian performers—Black Elk, Luther Standing Bear, Sitting Bull, Geronimo, and many lesser-knowns—went on record to share their experience, yet the book never substantially cites these autobiographical accounts. Even in those chapters looking at the contemporary experience of seventeen interviewees, the reader obtains only a cursory understanding of the interviewees’ perspectives. McNenly proves her point, but she loses a good opportunity to let Native Americans provide the voice.

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Northwest. However, after an admonishment by an elderly woman, Watkuweis, to leave the explorers alone, the tribe befriended them and became their allies in hopes of military and armament support.

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Between its stays with the Nez Perce on the way to the west coast and back, the Corps of Discovery spent more time with the Nez Perce than any other tribe it encountered. And considering the condition of the expedition’s members as they staggered into the villages of the Nez Perce, that tribe made perhaps the most significant contributions toward the success of the venture. The Nez Perce provided essential support to the Corps of Discovery at a crucial time. They fed the explorers when they were at their weakest, nursed them to health, adopted them as nonblood relatives, guided them, drew maps of the region, cared for their horses, taught them how to build dug-out canoes, and forgave them for many breeches of courtesy. The authors provide further insight and evidence into the persistent story that Clark’s liaison with a Nez Perce woman produced a child. In the last chapters, they briefly outline the loss of ancestral Nez Perce homelands through encroachment and military action in 1877. While this reviewer found the writing style of the authors lacking in transition, flow, and logical organization in several places, Lewis and Clark is still noteworthy. It provides a significant look at the junction of time and people, with the meeting of the Corps of Discovery and the Nez Perce in the early nineteenth century. —

J ohn

D.

B a rto n

Utah State University, Uintah Basin


utah state history conference

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awards program and keynote speaker, dr. margaret o’mara • september 26, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., At the LEONARDO Sessions covering more than 13,000 years of innovation, industry, and technology • september 27 – Tours

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september 25-27, 2014 • september 25, 7 p.m., at The city Library

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Technology—automobiles, movies, electricity— fills this photograph of Sugar House, taken in December 1950 at the intersection of 2100 South and 1100 East. — utah state historical society

conference is free and open to the public

hIStory.utah.gov/conference


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PARTY GROUP, 1936 Clifford Bray took this image—simply labeled “Carrigan, Party Group”—on November 4, 1936. Bray worked for Shipler Commercial Photographers from 1933 to 1938. The photograph collection

named for him and housed at the Utah State Historical Society contains 3,100 images of everyday life during the height of the Great Depression.


FA L L 2 0 1 4 I V O L U M E 8 2 I N U M B E R 4


U TA H HISTORICAL Q U A R T E R LY

EDITORIAL STAFF Brad Westwood — Editor

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ADVISORY BOARD OF EDITORS

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Jedediah S. Rogers — Co-Managing Editor

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Holly George — Co-Managing Editor

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Brian Q. Cannon, Provo, 2016 Craig Fuller, Salt Lake City, 2015

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Lee Ann Kreutzer, Salt Lake City, 2015 Kathryn L. MacKay, Ogden, 2017 Robert E. Parson, Benson, 2017

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W. Paul Reeve, Salt Lake City, 2014

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Susan Sessions Rugh, Provo, 2016 John Sillito, Ogden, 2017 Gary Topping, Salt Lake City, 2014 Ronald G. Watt, West Valley City, 2017 Colleen Whitley, Salt Lake City, 2015

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In 1897, public-spirited Utahns organized the Utah State Historical Society in order to expand public understanding of Utah’s past. Today, the Utah Division of State History administers the Society and, as part of its statutory obligations, publishes the Utah Historical Quarterly (ISSN 0 042-143X), which has collected and preserved Utah’s unique history since 1928. The Division also collects materials related to the history of Utah; assists communities, agencies, building owners, and consultants with state and federal processes regarding archaeological and historical resources; administers the ancient human remains program; makes historical resources available in a specialized research library; offers extensive online resources and grants; and assists in public policy and the promotion of Utah’s rich history. Visit history.utah.gov for more information. UHQ appears in winter, spring, summer, and fall. Members of the Society receive UHQ upon payment of annual dues: individual, $30; institution, $40; student and senior (age 65 or older), $25; business, $40; sustaining, $40; patron, $60; sponsor, $100. Direct manuscript submissions to the address listed below. Visit history.utah.gov for submission guidelines. Articles and book reviews represent the views of the authors and are not necessarily those of the Utah State Historical Society. POSTMASTER: Send address change to Utah Historical Quarterly,

Iron workers at the Denver and Rio Grande Depot, 1909. —

utah state historical society

300 S. Rio Grande, Salt Lake City, Utah 84101. Periodicals postage is paid at Salt Lake City, Utah. history.utah.gov (801) 245-7231


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CONTENTS

249 IN THIS ISSUE 318 BOOK REVIEWS

ARTICLES

272 A long course of the most 288 Water Law on the eve of inhuman cruelty: statehood:

250 A “Distinction between mormons and americans”: Mormon Indian Missionaries, Federal Indian Policy, and the Utah War By Brent M. Rogers

325 BOOK NOTICES 326 2014 index 338 utah in focus

The Abuse and Murder of Isaac Whitehouse By Noel A. Carmack

306 Setting The Ute Photographic Record Straight through Google’s Picasa Face Recognition Tool By Beth Simmons

Israel Bennion and a Conflict in Vernon, 1893–1896 By John Bennion

316 Highway 89 Digital Collections

By Jim Kichas

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Book Reviews

318 Elizabeth o. anderson, ed. Cowboy Apostle: The Diaries of Anthony W. Ivins, 1875–1932 Reviewed by Kristen Iversen

319 Val Holley

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25th Street Confidential: Drama, Decadence, and Dissipation along Ogden’s Rowdiest Road Reviewed by Heidi Orchard

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320 Todd M. Compton

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A Frontier Life: Jacob Hamblin, Explorer and Indian Missionary Reviewed by Richard W. Sadler

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321 Jedediah s. Rogers

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Roads in the Wilderness: Conflict in Canyon Country Reviewed by Clint Pumphrey

322 Edward Dorn; matthew hofer, ed. The Shoshoneans: The People of the Basin–Plateau Reviewed by Robert S. McPherson

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323 Michael hittman Great Basin Indians: An Encyclopedic History Reviewed by John D. Barton

Book NOTICES

325 Eileen Hallet Stone Hidden History of Utah

325 William shepard and h. Michael Marquardt Lost Apostles: Forgotten Members of Mormonism’s Original Quorum of Twelve

325 Jeff terry, thornton H. waite, and james j. reisdorff The Un-Driving of the Golden Spike


Volumes of legal material exist regarding the relationship between governmental entities and Native Americans. In the words of Francis Paul Prucha, from the origins of the United States to the present, “Indians as tribes or as individuals have been persistently in the consciousness of officials of all three branches of the federal government.”1 In 1850s Utah, another player—the LDS church— complicated the already difficult relationship between the government and the tribes. The LDS church and the federal government had separate, at times competing, policies regarding Great Basin Indians. Those policies could have very real effects on the ground. In our first article, Brent Rogers explores how federal officials perceived Mormons to be dangerously at odds with “Americans” in their dealings with indigenous peoples. Critically, the president had the legal backing to enforce federal law in relation to Native Americans; as Rogers writes, “Indian policy emerged as a crucial factor in the federal government’s effort to assert national power and authority in Utah Territory in the 1850s.” The second article in this issue moves from the world of presidents and governors to provide an entirely different look at Utah in the 1850s and 1 Francis Paul Prucha, The Great Father: The United States Government and the American Indians, abridged ed. (1984; Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1986), ix.

By 1881, conflict and anti-Indian furor had led to the relocation of certain Ute bands from Colorado to Utah. Many photographs document the Utes of the era, especially the principal players in these episodes. Unfortunately, the people in such photographs are often misidentified. Our fourth article shows how technology can assist in the study of history. In it, Beth Simmons uses a newly (and freely) available tool—face recognition software— to pin down the identities of Utes whose images were captured in an 1870s stereograph. Simmons’s article provides a fitting coda for the state historical society’s sixty-second annual meeting, which was held this September and focused on the place of technology in Utah’s past.

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As the third article attests, toward the end of the nineteenth century the loosening of LDS ecclesiastical control in Utah—in this case, over the distribution and management of water—contributed to bitter conflict in some Mormon villages. The angst over water is understandable: even in a state endowed with heavy snowpack and healthy runoff, then—and now—water scarcity was an issue of central concern. Slow to adopt the system of prior appropriation (“first in time, first in right”), Mormons had operated under a communitarian system of water management since their arrival in the Salt Lake Valley. Some second-generation Mormons, faced with state regulation and private ownership of water, desperately attempted to retain control of the resource. John Bennion documents one conflict in Utah’s Rush Valley that pitted men, otherwise bound together by ecclesiastical responsibilities and familial ties, against one another.

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From traffic violations to weightier questions of domestic life and land use, laws and regulations fill the lives of everyday, contemporary Utahns. So too did laws circumscribe and inform the world of nineteenth-century Utah. In that historical setting, things ecclesiastical often became entangled with things civil. For many years after the settlement of the Salt Lake Valley in 1847 by members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, distinctive Mormon practices, institutions, and laws played a critical part in the governance of Utah. People outside the LDS church soon chafed at this arrangement. Much of the fall 2014 issue of Utah Historical Quarterly explores the place of law in society and illuminates Utah’s church and state conundrum.

how behavior at home affects the most vulnerable of people: children. It presents the story of Isaac Whitehouse, a boy with disabilities who suffered terrible abuse—and, on one fall evening in 1855, a violent death—at the hands of his caretakers. Noel Carmack documents the injustices of the case: following his conviction for the boy’s murder, Samuel G. Baker served only two months in the territorial penitentiary before being pardoned by Brigham Young—a move Judge William Drummond found to be an affront to the rule of law in Utah. But Carmack reveals complex forces at work in the case and raises interesting, and surprising, questions about the intersection of religion, community, and domestic responsibility in early Utah.

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The Ute Chiefs Walker (or Wåkara, left) and Arapeen (right), from a sketch made by Frederick Piercy and used in Route from Liverpool to Great Salt Lake Valley (1855). —

utah state historical society


Mormon Indian Missionaries, Federal Indian Policy, and the Utah War BY

BRE N T

M.

R O G E R S

Indian policy played a vital role in shaping the perceptions about and the realities in Utah Territory in the 1850s. During that decade, two groups of people—Mormons and agents of the U.S. federal government—invaded Great Basin indigenous homelands and employed competing philosophies of Indian affairs.1 Both groups sought to control Native Americans: the federal government to protect emigrant routes and encourage the expansion of white settlement in the West and the Mormons to fulfill religious imperatives and foster peace between the growing settler and indigenous populations. Though some scholars have investigated the Mormon perspective on Mormon-Indian relations or focused on the actions of individual federal Indian agents in antebellum Utah, their analyses have generally not included an examination of federal Indian laws, particularly the Trade and Intercourse Act, and the national perception about Mormon-Indian relations. These facets are essential to understanding the federal-territorial relationship in Utah and the complex origins, execution, and impact of the Utah War.2 1 A note on terminology: In referring to the religious group belonging to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints this article will use the terms Mormons, Latter-day Saints, and LDS interchangeably. The article will also use Indian, indigenous, Native American, and American Indian interchangeably to refer to the indigenous inhabitants of the North American continent. In Utah, the primary groups that composed the indigenous population were Utes, Shoshones, Goshutes, Paiutes, and Navajos. 2 For more on the historiography of Mormon-Indian relations, see Sondra Jones, “Saints or Sinners? The Evolving Perceptions of Mormon-Indian Relations in Utah

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A “distinction between mormons and Americans”

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The Mormons, who had established themselves as a cohesive and autonomous group near the Great Salt Lake, pursued their own objectives and strategies toward Native Americans, which appeared to contradict the aims of the U.S. government’s Indian policy. Utah’s religious and civil leader, Brigham Young, also served as the superintendent of Indian affairs from 1851 to 1857. In that capacity, as the federal representative responsible for oversight of the area’s indigenous peoples, he permitted many Mormon missionaries to proselyte to them. Federal representatives in Utah Territory distrusted Mormon missionaries working amongst the indigenous population in and around the Great Basin. Their observations of Mormon-Indian interactions led to accusations that the missionaries had violated the long-standing Trade and Intercourse Act by sending messages to the Indians meant to encourage their alliance with the Mormons against federal agents, the government, and American citizens.3 By early Historiography,” Utah Historical Quarterly 72, no. 1 (2004): 19–46. For more on Mormon Indian policies, see Howard A. Christy, “Open Hand and Mailed Fist: Mormon-Indian Relations in Utah, 1847–1852,” Utah Historical Quarterly 46, no. 3 (1978): 215–35 and “The Walker War: Defense and Conciliation as Strategy,” Utah Historical Quarterly 47, no. 4 (1979): 395–420. See also David L. Bigler and Will Bagley, The Mormon Rebellion: America’s First Civil War, 1857–1858 (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2011). Additional studies on individual federal Indian agents and superintendents in Utah include Dale L. Morgan, “The Administration of Indian Affairs in Utah, 1851–1858,” Pacific Historical Quarterly 17 (1948): 383–409; Floyd A. O’Neil and Stanford J. Layton, “Of Pride and Politics: Brigham Young as Indian Superintendent,” Utah Historical Quarterly 46, no. 3 (1978): 236–50; Wayne Miles Eckman, “Brigham Young’s Indian Superintendency (1851–58): A Significant Microcosm of the American Indian Experience” (master’s thesis, Brigham Young University, 1989); David L. Bigler, “Garland Hurt, the American Friend of the Utahs,” Utah Historical Quarterly 62, no. 2 (1994): 149–70; and Lawrence G. Coates, “Brigham Young and Mormon Indian Policies: The Formative Period, 1836–1851,” BYU Studies 18 (1978): 428–52. 3 The Trade and Intercourse Act, which became law on June 30, 1834, provided the principal legal base for regulating commerce and other interactions between American Indians and non-Natives in the United States at that time. A congressional act of February 27, 1851, which authorized Indian agents for the territories of New Mexico and Utah, also extended the provisions of the Trade and Intercourse Act to those geopolitical regions. U.S. Statutes at Large 9:586–87; Francis Paul Prucha, ed., Documents of United States Indian Policy, 3rd ed. (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2000), 63, 68.

1857, the White House had received numerous reports that Mormons had gained influence over the territory’s indigenous population at an unacceptable cost: the violation of federal Indian policy and the gross dismissal of federal sovereignty. Indian policy was a locus of the United States’ efforts to govern new territories created from the Mexican cession. In developing newly acquired or conquered regions, the U.S. federal government established the territorial system. Territories were subsidiary units of power that emanated from and remained subordinate to national sovereignty. While still in the territorial stage, the president and Congress had power “to dispose of and make all needful rules and regulations respecting the territory or other property belonging to the United States.”4 Federal Indian policies, administered by federally appointed superintendents of Indian affairs and Indian agents, aimed to manage Native and non-Native relations in order to benefit whites.5 Certain statutes, primarily the 1834 Trade and Intercourse Act, provided the president the authority to send the U.S. Army to enforce federal law. Ultimately, Indian policy emerged as a crucial factor in the federal government’s effort to assert national power and authority in Utah Territory in the 1850s and was one central element of the tension that led to the Utah War. Upon their arrival in the Great Basin in 1847, the Mormons established the provisional State of Deseret as an autonomous government. Simultaneously, they settled on Ute, Paiute, Goshute, and Shoshone lands and disrupted the already precarious natural environment by adding new competition for fish, game, water, timber, and

4 Northwest Ordinance, July 13, 1787, Miscellaneous Papers of the Continental Congress, 1774–1789, roll 9, MS 332, Record Group 360, National Archives and Records Administration (hereafter NARA); U.S. Const. art. IV, § 3. See also Gary Lawson and Guy Seidman, The Constitution of Empire: Territorial Expansion and American Legal History (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2004), 3. 5 Stephen J. Rockwell, Indian Affairs and the Administrative State in the Nineteenth Century (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2010); Francis Paul Prucha, American Indian Policy in the Formative Years: The Indian Trade and Intercourse Acts, 1790–1834 (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1962).


6 Jared Farmer, On Zion’s Mount: Mormons, Indians, and the American Landscape (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2008); Ronald W. Walker, “Wakara Meets the Mormons, 1848–52: A Case Study in Native American Accommodation,” Utah Historical Quarterly 70, no. 3 (2002): 224; Virginia McConnell Simmons, The Ute Indians of Utah, Colorado, and New Mexico (Boulder: University Press of Colorado, 2000), 91. 7 Stephen P. Van Hoak, “Waccara’s Utes: Native American Equestrian Adaptations in the Eastern Great Basin, 1776–1886,”Utah Historical Quarterly 67, no. 4 (1999): 309–330; Walker, “Wakara Meets the Mormons,” 215–37; Sondra Jones, “‘Redeeming’ the Indian: The Enslavement of Indian Children in New Mexico and Utah,” Utah Historical Quarterly 67, no. 3 (1999): 220–41. 8 John R. Alley, Jr., “Prelude to Dispossession: The Fur Trade’s Significance for the Northern Utes and Southern Paiutes,” Utah Historical Quarterly 50, no 2 (1982): 104–123; John W. Heaton, “‘No Place to Pitch Their Teepees’: Shoshone Adaptation to Mormon Settlers in Cache Valley, 1855–70,” in Being Different: Stories of Utah’s Minorities, ed. Stanford J. Layton (Salt Lake City: Signature Books, 2001), 35. 9 Ned Blackhawk, Violence Over the Land: Indians and Empires in the Early American West (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2006), 253–54.

10 For some recent treatments of the “runaway officials,” see Ronald W. Walker, “The Affairs of the ‘Runaways’: Utah’s First Encounter with the Federal Officers, Part 1,” Journal of Mormon History 39, no. 4 (2013): 1–43; Ronald W. Walker and Matthew J. Grow, “The People Are ‘Hogaffed or Humbugged’: The 1851–52 National Reaction to Utah’s ‘Runaway’ Officers, Part 2,” Journal of Mormon History 40, no. 1 (2014): 1–52; Thomas G. Alexander, “Carpetbaggers, Reprobates, and Liars: Federal Judges and the Utah War (1857–1858),” The Historian (May 2008): 215–19; Gerrit J. Dirkmaat, “Enemies Foreign and Domestic: US Relations with Mormons in the US Empire in North America, 1844– 1854” (Ph.D. diss., University of Colorado, 2010), 365– 95; see also Norman F. Furniss, The Mormon Conflict (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1960), 21–29. 11 Luke Lea, in Annual Report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, Transmitted with the Message of the President at the Opening of the Thirty-Second Congress, 1850 (Washington, D.C.: Office of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, 1850), 12.

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Several hundred dollars worth of Indian goods as presents, for the purpose, no doubt, of conciliating the Indians and getting their permission to extend his settlements, thus making use of his office as superintendent, and the money of the government to promote the interest of his church. Therefore it seems to me that no Mormon should, officially, have anything to do with the Indians. I have no doubt but every effort will be

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In the midst of intermittent, occasionally intense conflict between indigenous groups and Mormon settlers, LDS church leaders set up their own Indian policy. In 1850, Congress agreed to the legislative package that created Utah Territory and placed the Mormons in the Great Basin under a territorial government. However, the first wave of federal officials—

“We know but little,” U.S. Commissioner of Indian Affairs Luke Lea reported in November 1850, “of the Indians in Utah, beyond the fact that they are generally peaceable in their disposition and easily controlled.”11 Upon his arrival in Salt Lake City in 1851, the federal Indian agent Jacob Holeman wrote to Lea that he found Brigham Young and his fellow Mormon Indian agent Stephen B. Rose on an expedition to the Indians. According to Holeman, Young and Rose had taken with them

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who had been assigned to establish vital components of that territorial government—left quickly after their arrival in 1851 due to growing conflict with the Latter-day Saints. The federal government did not approve of their departure from the territory, and President Millard Fillmore determined that these “runaway officials” were derelict in their duties.10 Still, the reports these early officials sent to Washington became the basis for federal knowledge about Mormon Indian policy.

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other resources.6 At the same time, by 1847, the Ute chief Wákara sat atop a lucrative trading and raiding economy that specialized in human trafficking as far west as California, as far east as the Great Plains, and south into Mexico.7 Leaders and members of the LDS church, whose settlement in the Great Basin was initially accepted by Utes and Southern Paiutes, eventually attempted to disrupt Native American economies by curtailing the trade in horses, child slaves, and tribute between Utes and Mexicans. Nevertheless, at the outset, many Native peoples chose to affiliate or engage with Mormons and develop friendly relations with them. Utes viewed Mormons as stable and permanent trade partners, while the Paiutes saw their new neighbors as potential protectors against raiding bands of Utes and Shoshones.8 In the 1850s, however, Mormons legislated against the Indian slave trade, even as the white population grew and tensions between the settlers and the indigenous population, particularly the Utes, increased.9

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made by the Mormons to prevent the government from peaceably extending her laws over the Territory.

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Holeman recommended “to the department that while the Indians of this Territory are generally friendly disposed towards the Whites that some arrangement should be made with them by which their rights as well as those of the Government should be distinctly understood.”12

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With no other federal presence in the territory other than himself. . . . Young implemented indian policy. Despite the many Mormon-Indian conflicts that represented the reality on the ground and the agency of the region’s Native peoples, it was the Mormons, according to Holeman, who “easily controlled” the Great Basin’s native peoples. Young was the federally appointed territorial governor and superintendent of Indian affairs. With this authority, he could license trade and intercourse between whites and Indians. On October 20, 1851, Young wrote to Fillmore to inform him “that upon Indian affairs I have never received any instructions.” According to Young, Holeman—the territorial Indian agent subordinate to Young—left immediately after arriving in Utah for business in Wyoming and had not yet returned. Meanwhile, Henry R. Day, the Indian subagent, had come to Utah with other federal officers, but, as Young presumed, “upon meeting with Mr. Holeman they all returned to the States together.”13 With no federal presence in the territory other than himself, unclear instructions about how to 12 Jacob Holeman to Luke Lea, November 28, 1851, in The Utah Expedition, 35th Cong., 1st Sess., H. Ex. Doc. 71 (1857), 128–30 (hereafter Ex. Doc. 71). 13 Young to Fillmore, October 20, 1851, in Message of the President of the United States, 32d Cong., 1st Sess., Ex. Doc. 25 (1851), 7–8.

execute federal Indian policy, and mounting conflict between his people and regional Native bands, Young implemented an Indian policy that would benefit the white population of the territory, who belonged almost entirely to the church that he led. Early members of the LDS church identified American Indians as descendants of the Lamanites, a people described in the Book of Mormon as the descendents of Joseph and members of scattered Israel.14 Indeed, the title page of the Book of Mormon stated that the book was written particularly “to the Lamanites.” The historian Richard Lyman Bushman characterized the general awareness of the religious doctrine shortly after its publication: “Almost as frequently as the book was called a ‘gold bible’ it was called a history of the Indians.”15 Further, the Book of Mormon “is not just sympathetic to Indians; it grants them dominance—in history, in God’s esteem, and in future ownership of the American continent.”16 The concept of Indians as worthy and capable of salvation equal to white Latter-day Saints existed in early Mormon thought as those church members worked toward Native American redemption in hopes of ushering in the Millennium. In fact, the church’s first formal proselytizing mission was to the American Indians in present-day Kansas in 1830–1831.17 However, other Americans, 14 The Evening and the Morning Star (Independence, MO), July 1832; Latter Day Saints’ Messenger and Advocate (Kirtland, OH), November 1835; Book of Mormon, 3 Nephi 20:22. 15 Richard Lyman Bushman, Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling (New York: Vintage Books, 2007), 94; see also Dan Vogel, Indian Origins and the Book of Mormon (Salt Lake City: Signature Books, 1986), 30. 16 Bushman, Joseph Smith, 99. Indeed, the LDS church’s newspaper reflected on Book of Mormon teachings that made known “the choice people of this continent,” the American Indians. That article lauded the federal government’s efforts to remove Indians to the West as part of the prophesied gathering of the scattered people. Latter Day Saints’ Messenger and Advocate (Kirtland, OH), January 1836. 17 For Book of Mormon passages relative to Native American redemption, see 2 Nephi 30 and 3 Nephi 16 and 21; see also Mark Ashurst-McGee, “Zion Rising: Joseph Smith’s Early Social and Political Thought” (Ph.D. diss., Arizona State University, 2008), 111–55, 387. For more on the revelations on and early LDS missions to the “Lamanites,” see Michael Hubbard MacKay, Gerrit J. Dirkmaat, Grant Underwood, Robert J. Woodford, and William G. Hartley, eds., Documents, Volume 1: July 1828–June 1831, in The Joseph Smith Papers, ed. Dean C.


Jessee, Ronald K. Esplin, Richard Lyman Bushman, and Matthew J. Grow (Salt Lake City: Church Historian’s Press, 2013), 9, 177–90, 200–205. 18 In July 1836, Missourians were upset by the large numbers of Mormons immigrating to Clay County and alarmed at the possibility of a Mormon-Indian alliance. The Clay County citizens feared the Mormons’ open declarations “that the Indians are a part of God’s chosen people, and are destined, by heaven, to inherit this land, in common with themselves.” Latter Day Saints’ Messenger and Advocate (Kirtland, OH), August 1836. 19 Ronald W. Walker, “Seeking the Remnant: The Native American during the Joseph Smith Period,” Journal of Mormon History 19, no. 1 (1993): 7, 21. 20 Farmer, On Zion’s Mount, 81. 21 Deseret News, June 22, 1854.

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An 1854 wood engraving of Brigham Young. —

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of food, clothing, and other supplies to regional Native Americans. This policy was eventually encapsulated in the idea that “it was cheaper to feed the Indians than fight them.”22 As part of their efforts to secure peace and promote their own safety, LDS church leaders sought to implement a regulatory governing program to make the region’s Native Americans dependent upon them. Still, gaining and maintaining influence over Native peoples was a task easier said than done: both the 1853–1854 Walker War and the 1856 Tintic War attested to the inability of the Mormons to establish unfettered control over indigenous groups. The Walker War consisted of a series of skirmishes between Mormons and Utes in central 22 The idea that it would be cheaper to feed than to fight Native peoples can be traced back to at least the summer of 1851. Other Mormon leaders, including Jedediah Grant, a member of the LDS church’s first presidency and the mayor of Salt Lake City, supported the formulated Indian policy. In a discourse of April 2, 1856, Grant noted that feeding and clothing the Indians would prove the cheapest way of fighting them and their ways. See Christy, “Open Hand and Mailed Fist,” 231–35; and Deseret News, February 27, April 2, 1856.

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Mormon Indian policy in Utah Territory remained concerned with Native redemption and salvation. Brigham Young, however, simultaneously had to deal with political and economic realities that conflicted with the spiritual obligations to convert Native peoples.20 The relationship between Mormons and Great Basin Indians vacillated between the Mormons’ religious motivations to redeem them and armed confrontations that emerged from the clash of cultures, the disruption of Native trade networks, and competition over the area’s limited natural resources. A Deseret News article perhaps summed the relationship up best: “The events that have transpired, since the settlement of 1847, have brought the settlers and Natives of Utah into frequent and extended intercourse under very diverse circumstances; sometimes pleasant, and mutually beneficial—at others quite the reverse.”21 Above all, Young attempted to secure the safety of his religious followers and sought after the best methods to obtain that end. These particularly included peaceful overtures such as giving gifts

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including Missourians, considered strange the notion that the United States could be the promised land for American Indians who had been enlightened by Mormon theology; these people largely insisted that the federal government remove Native peoples from their homelands and onto reservations of the worst land.18 The prophesied and providential destiny of the Indians, according to the historian Ronald W. Walker, “helped to shape the next several decades of the Latter-day Saint experience.”19 To be sure, Indian relations informed LDS efforts and shaped perceptions of them through the 1850s.

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Utah. During that conflict, on October 6, 1853, the Latter-day Saints renewed their convictions to preach, convert, and establish harmonious relationships with local Indian groups. Accordingly, Young sanctioned the creation of the Southern Indian Mission, partially in order to increase resources in this component of territorial management. Proselytizing efforts in connection with this mission concentrated on the greater south-central part of Utah Territory, though they extended geographically into what is now Las Vegas, Nevada, in the south and to Parowan in the north.23 Meanwhile, in early February 1854, sixteen women in Salt Lake City responded to Young’s exhortation to befriend and aid Indians by independently organizing “a society of females for the purpose of making clothing for Indian women and children.” Patty Bartlett Sessions, a Mormon midwife and a respected woman in the community, recorded in her diary on June 10, 1854, that she went “to the ward meeting of the sisters” who “organized a benevolent society to clothe the Indians & squas,” as part of the broader missionary work among the area’s Native peoples.24 During 1854, Mormon women organized at least twenty-two Indian Relief Societies in Salt Lake City and outlying settlements. Their members contributed substantial amounts of food, bedding, and clothing to help maintain positive relations between the settlers and the local indigenous population.25 This women-led effort furthered Mormon Indian policy. The Southern Indian Mission finally commenced on April 10, 1854. Missionaries in the field and Mormon leaders in Salt Lake City concurred that the best way to achieve their desired 23 Juanita Brooks, ed., Journal of the Southern Indian Mission: Diary of Thomas D. Brown (Logan: Utah State University Press, 1972), 1–3. 24 Donna Toland Smart, ed., Mormon Midwife: The 1846– 1888 Diaries of Patty Bartlett Sessions (Logan: Utah State University Press, 1997), 206. See also Richard L. Jensen, “Forgotten Relief Societies, 1844–67,” Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought 16 (Spring 1983): 105–125. 25 Sixteenth Ward Relief Society, Record Book, 1854, in Patty Bartlett Sessions, Diary and Account Book, MS 12481, Church History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah (hereafter CHL); Twelfth Ward Relief Society, Minutes, in Amanda Barnes Smith, Notebook, MS 2005, CHL; Ward Histories, box 77, fd. 2, Richard Douglas Poll Papers, MS0674, J. Willard Marriott Library Special Collections, University of Utah, Salt Lake City (hereafter MLSC); Woman’s Exponent, July 1903, 6.

aims of conversion, dependence, and control came by teaching indigenous peoples the gospel in their own language, giving them food, and setting a good example. To better serve and potentially attract a greater number of Native converts, missionaries engaged in intensive language study. Near Provo, some Indians lived in and around Mormon settlements, giving church members an opportunity to learn their language.26 Within a short time, the LDS church had published pamphlets containing translations of Ute, Paiute, and Shoshone dialects.27 On Sunday May 21, 1854, the Mormon apostle Parley P. Pratt spoke to the Southern Indian missionaries. His message concerned the instruction of Native Americans and the example of the Mormon people as a powerful teaching method. Pratt had received word that some of the LDS members living within the boundaries of the Southern Indian Mission spent their time in idleness, wrestling, and gambling. Pratt expounded that all living in the area were to serve as missionaries, women not excepted, through model behavior. Pratt stated that all should take up the duty to feed, clothe, and instruct their Native neighbors. He suggested that even though the two peoples may not understand each other verbally, “there is one language that all can understand and feel— kindness, sympathy, this they can feel.” Pratt instructed missionaries to focus their efforts on the younger generation of Indians, which, he thought, would be the most effective way to bring Native peoples into the Mormon fold.28 In the summer of 1854, the Deseret News 26 “Letter from Elder Henry Lunt,” December 29, 1853, in Deseret News, February 2, 1854; George W. Bean, Journal, May 1, 1855, MS 7805, CHL; Jonathan Oldham Duke, Reminiscences and Diary, July 17, 1855, MS 136, CHL; Deseret News, March 16, July 20, 1854; Brooks, Journal of the Southern Indian Mission, 31; Juanita Brooks, “Indian Relations on the Mormon Frontier,” Utah Historical Quarterly 12 (1944), 11. 27 Dimick B. Huntington, Vocabulary of the Utah and ShoSho-Ne or Snake Dialects, 3rd. ed. (Salt Lake City: Salt Lake Herald Office, 1872). Huntington first published his pamphlet in 1854, but no original copies remain extant. Chad J. Flake and Larry W. Draper, eds., A Mormon Bibliography, 1830–1930 (Provo, UT: Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young University, 2004), 1:529. See also Journal History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, February 28, 1854, CR 100 137, CHL. 28 Brooks, Journal of the Southern Indian Mission, 75.


Governing the region’s indigenous population was, ostensibly, a means of self-preservation for the Mormons and the mode for peacemaking in the territory. In his dual role as superintendent of Indian affairs and leader of the LDS church, Young said, “If we can secure the good will of the Indians by conferring favors upon them we not only secure peace for the time being but gradually bring them to depend upon us for food and clothing, until they cannot get along without us.”31 Young 29 Deseret News, June 22, 1854. 30 Brooks, Journal of the Southern Indian Mission, 85–86, 123. 31 Quoted in Coates, “Brigham Young and Mormon Indian Policies,” 452. Coates cites the document as “a scrap of paper in Brigham Young’s papers,” presumably at the LDS Church History Library. He further notes that although that scrap is not dated, the quotations contained thereon “succinctly express Brigham Young’s

This exchange provided the Mormon missionary with an opportunity to expound “upon the oft repeated cruelties, shootings and killings” perpetrated among the Indians by the “American” emigrants, crossing Utah en route to California. Brown explained that these crimes far outweighed the paltry presents the Indians received from Americans, which caused his new friends to exclaim, “The American no good, they are not our friends, but you are; we

philosophy of Indian relations.” I could not locate that scrap of paper in Young’s papers; however, one of Young’s letters to George W. Bradley used nearly the same words as this quote. See Young to George W. Bradley, June 13, 1854, Brigham Young Papers, CR 1234 1, CHL. Evidence found in the Deseret News and in the journals of Indian missionaries presented elsewhere in this article also substantiates Coates’s quotation of Young. 32 Brooks, Journal of the Southern Indian Mission, 133.

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As Mormon missionaries began to labor with the Great Basin’s American Indians, they found many opportunities to demonstrate the differences between Mormons and other whites, particularly federal Indian agents. In July 1855, Thomas D. Brown, a Mormon missionary, wrote in his journal about an exchange of goods and ideas between Mormons and Indians. Brown and other missionaries gave some Paiutes a few blankets and other presents that, according to Brown, “caused them to say ‘The Americans sometimes very good, give us clothes.’” Brown initially thought that it “would have been a difficult task to explain to them why U.S. nincompoops had frequently more in their power to do them good than we had.” He delighted, however, in his ability to exhibit the benefits and confirm the friendship of the Mormons, who, he told his new Native associates, did everything in their power to provide assistance. Through “united and unfeigned attention and kindness to them,” Brown wrote, “we gained upon their affections.”32

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We shall be able ultimately to control and govern them, as it is now, whenever an excitement arises among them against the whites, they immediately become unapproachable and we find it difficult to get access to them at all. . . . Now if our people were so well established in their confidence and friendship as to control and influence them & more or less, be with them all the time being in their midst at such times. Do you not see that all such excitements should be kept down & we should be able through this agency to have peace & control the natives if this policy could be carried into general effect.30

assumed that Mormon policies could bring about Indian dependence on permanent settlers, who were invested in establishing and maintaining peaceful relationships in the territory. On the other hand, the Mormon leader could not believe that transient white overland travelers or federal officials were devoted to creating such a harmonious atmosphere.

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provided further guidance. An article entitled “The Best Course” stated “that the most absolute peaceable subjection of one person to another, arises when an individual is clothed, fed, and sustained at another’s expense, without compensation” and, if the Mormons could accomplish that subjection, then the Indians would have nowhere else to turn for their support system.29 A July 26, 1854, letter from Young to the leaders of the Southern Indian Mission similarly demonstrated this overarching idea in Mormon Indian policy. By providing for necessities, setting a good example, and gaining the confidence of the region’s tribes, Young stated,

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are Mormons and no longer Pahutes.”33 According to Brown’s record, these Paiutes chose, within the context of two competing entities, to improve their relationships with the Mormons, among whom they lived. In addition, these types of statements from Paiutes might have helped maintain peace between the two groups, even as they encouraged the Mormons to continue to offer protection against opposing Native bands and passing white travelers.

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Mormon missionaries and other church members discussed and debated their relationships with Native peoples and questioned whether the U.S. government had benefited the Indians at all. For instance, the Indian missionary George W. Bean argued that the government had done nothing, particularly in comparison with Mormon efforts. Bean depicted the “lasting friendship” he and his compatriots had developed with a group of Indians. Furthermore, that Mormons openly compared their efforts to those of the federal government suggests that they might have used such comparisons as a point of conversation to curry favor and encourage peace in the minds of Native Americans.34 Such evangelization allowed the Mormons to highlight the good they did and to contrast their actions against any negative interaction that Indians had with other white travelers or temporary federal officials. Conversely, non-Mormon onlookers certainly could have construed messages such as these as evidence that Mormons were disturbing the peace and attempting to alienate Great Basin Indians from other Americans and from the federal government. The federal government and the American people’s knowledge of Mormon-Indian relations grew out of the writings of federal officers who had sojourned in Utah. For example, Captain John W. Gunnison, the second-in-command of Howard Stansbury’s survey of the Great Salt Lake, published his personal views in book form in 1852. Gunnison commented on the desires of Mormons for self-government, their plural marriage structure, and their exerting influence on the “great tribes” of the region, which he believed ensured “them a controlling power

33 Ibid., 133. 34 Bean, Journal, December 1, 30, 1855, CHL.

ultimately.”35 Gunnison proposed that the army or another federal entity could gain influence over this aspect of territorial governance and over the Native peoples themselves by establishing a defensive fort and Indian agency at a strategic location along the main route of travel. A federal establishment at one of these points— Fort Bridger, for instance—could aid in regulating the Indians and promote “emigrant travel to Oregon and California.”36 Gunnison’s early report provided a blueprint for federal control over Utah Territory’s Indian affairs. The fall of 1853 was a time of great conflict between Indians and settlers in Utah as the Walker War continued and created a tense atmosphere in the territory. Gunnison had returned to the territory to perform a federal survey for a potential transcontinental railroad route. On October 26, 1853, in retribution for the earlier killing of a Pahvant Ute by a passing wagon train, a Pahvant band murdered Gunnison and seven members of his surveying party while they camped at Lake Sevier near the town of Fillmore.37 A new, though temporary, federal presence would arrive in Utah Territory in August 1854 to assist in the investigation of the Gunnison murders. This army detachment, led by Brevet Lt. Col. Edward J. Steptoe, remained in Utah until the spring of 1855. During this brief stay, Second Lieutenant Sylvester Mowry, the newly arrived federal Indian agent Garland Hurt, and Steptoe each sent reports to Washington that brought into stark relief the role of Mormon Indian policy in Utah Territory.38 35 John W. Gunnison, The Mormons, or Latter-Day Saints, in the Valley of the Great Salt Lake . . . (1852; repr., Brookline, MA, 1993), 150. 36 Ibid. The conflict between Mormons and the U.S. government over Fort Bridger began in 1853 and was not resolved until the Utah War of 1857–1858. 37 Brigham D. Madsen, ed., “John W. Gunnison’s Letters to His Mormon Friend, Albert Carrington,” Utah Historical Quarterly 59, no. 3 (1991): 264–85; see also Ronald W. Walker, “President Young Writes Jefferson Davis about the Gunnison Massacre Affair,” BYU Studies 35, no. 1 (1995): 146–70. 38 Steptoe to Manypenny, April 5, 1855, Ex. Doc. 71, 178–79; Sylvester Mowry, List of Camps and Distances from Great Salt Lake City, Utah Territory, to Fort Tejon, California, 12, Selected Letters from Sylvester Mowry, 1854–1855, MIC A 106, Utah State Historical Society, Salt Lake City (hereafter USHS); Hurt to Manypenny, May 2, 1855, in Annual Report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs for the Year 1857 (Washington, D.C.: William A. Harris, 1858), 306.


Garland Hurt, a St. Louis physician, arrived in Utah Territory in February 1855 to serve as an Indian agent, an organizational subordinate of Young in the office of Indian affairs. His letters and reports to his superiors in Washington helped confirm the image of a subversive Mormon-Indian relationship. Hurt primarily criticized the Mormon missionaries because they taught the Indians their theology and gave gifts 39 National Era, May 24, 1855. Emphasis in the original. 40 Steptoe to Manypenny, April 5, 1855, Ex. Doc. 71, 178–79. 41 Bangor (ME) Daily Whig and Courier, May 22, 1855; Christian Advocate and Journal (New York), July 19, 1855. In a forthcoming book, W. Paul Reeve explores MormonIndian relations and the racialized social constructs of Mormons and Indians merging through their perceived alliances. W. Paul Reeve, Religion of a Different Color: Race and the Mormon Struggle for Whiteness (New York: Oxford University Press, forthcoming), chapter 5.

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in the form of food and clothing, paid for by the U.S. government but attributed to LDS largesse. The Indian agent was so disgusted with Mormon missionary practices that he went over Young’s head to Washington. Hurt reported to Commissioner of Indian Affairs George Manypenny that soon after his arrival in Utah he “became impressed with the fact that the Indians had made a distinction between Mormons and Americans, which was calculated to operate to the prejudice of the interests and policy of government towards them.”42 The Indian agent explained his distress, stating that every tribe on the continent would receive a visit from the Mormons and that their missionaries would teach the “wretched savages that they are the rightful owners of the American soil, and that it has been wrongfully taken from them” by the United States.43

42 Hurt to Manypenny, August 30, 1856, U.S. Indian Affairs Department Correspondence, 1855–1859, MSS A 458, USHS. 43 Hurt to Manypenny, May 2, 1855, in Annual Report, 1857, 305.

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Based on his observations and from his interactions with Great Basin Indians during his time in Utah, Steptoe stated that the Indians in the territory had learned “for the first time, what relation they hold to the government, and that to it alone they must look for encouragement in well doing, or chastisement for misconduct.”40 Steptoe earnestly asked for the full support of the government to establish federal control over Indian administration in the territory. Steptoe’s report triggered a fear that Young had plotted to usurp the “authority of our sovereignty” and that his “tribe” reigned with undisputed sovereignty over a large territory of the American Union.41 Steptoe’s report foreshadowed a growing belief that LDS missionaries and their teachings had uniformly created a distinction between members of their church and government agents in order to create an alliance against the United States.

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Steptoe’s detachment assisted in the apprehension of a few Pahvants who were brought to trial and found guilty of manslaughter. The result of the Gunnison trial, including the all-Mormon jury’s refusal to try the case as murder and the subsequent escape of three convicted Indians from prison, also helped influence public perception about Mormon-Indian relations. According to one account in the eastern press, the outcome of the Gunnison trial was due “entirely to the interference of the Mormons, who seem to be in league with the Indians in resisting the authority of the United States.”39

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In a May 1855 letter to Manypenny, Hurt categorized Mormon Indian missionaries as “a class of rude and lawless young men, such as might be regarded as a curse to any civilized community,” and offered a legal means to remedy the problems he saw in Mormon Indian policy. Hurt indicated that “the conduct of these Mormon missionaries be subjected to the strictest scrutiny, and that the 13th and 14th sections of the ‘Act to regulate trade and intercourse with the Indian tribes, and to preserve peace on the frontiers,’ he properly enforced.”44 The Mormons were no strangers to the Trade and Intercourse Act. In late 1851 and early 1852, Mormon officials used the act to arrest and convict Don Pedro León Luján, a New Mexican who traded with Utes for Indian captives without a proper license in Utah. At that time, Mormons attempted to combat the Mexican-Indian slave trade and employed the Trade and Intercourse Act as the legal means to do so.45 Just as the Mormons utilized the Intercourse Act as a legal means to thwart the Indian slave trade, Hurt and others accused the Mormons of violating the act as the means to curb the Mormon influence over the region’s indigenous peoples and to promote federal authority. Acting Commissioner of Indian Affairs Charles E. Mix received Hurt’s letter in July 1855.46 Within a month, Mix wrote to Secretary of the Interior Robert McClelland regarding the Mormons’ Indian policy. Mix stated that the Mormon missionaries had “either accidentally or purposely created a distinction in the minds of the Indian tribes of the Territory between the Mormons and the citizens of the United States which must prove prejudicial to the interests of the latter.”47 Mix pled with McClelland to send a permanent body of U.S. troops to Utah to scrutinize and regulate Mormon actions and teachings. Mix warned that the federal government needed to intervene “as a precautionary step to preserve the harmony of our relations with the 44 Ibid., 306. Emphasis in original. 45 Sondra Jones, “The Trial of Don Pedro León: Politics, Prejudice, and Pragmatism,” Utah Historical Quarterly 65, no. 2 (1997): 165–68.

Indian tribes” and prohibit potential Mormon designs to interrupt the peace and turn the Indians against American travelers and the government in general.48 McClelland apparently took no action at this time, but Hurt’s many letters were kept on file and were eventually included in the official report on the factors that led to the military expedition to Utah. Hurt wrote still more letters on Mormon-Indian relations to John M. Elliott, a congressional representative from Kentucky. In one letter, Utah’s Indian agent labeled Mormon missionaries as “unprincipled men” who sought to prejudice the minds of the indigenous population against the federal government and himself as its accredited agent through their “debasing and corrupting doctrines.” He further implied that the Mormons must be made to respect the laws and institutions of the government “or reap the penalties.”49 Hurt asked that Elliott use his influence to advise the president, the secretary of the interior, and the commissioner of Indian affairs on his report, which Elliott forwarded to the commissioner in December 1856.50 Hurt’s reports and observations suggested the importance of maintaining federal laws in Utah Territory and of combating the messages delivered by missionaries that could potentially form divisions between Mormons and Americans in the minds of the region’s indigenous population. In late October 1856, Hurt sent a letter to Brigham Young. In it, Hurt stated, “Soon after commencing my labors among the Indians of this territory, I learned that they made a distinction between Mormons and Americans, which I thought was not altogether compatible with correct policy, believing that it would ultimately operate to the prejudice of one or the other party.” According to his letter, Hurt had expressed his views “on all suitable occasions” and had endeavored to teach the Indians that “no distinction” existed between “the two classes, but that we were all the Great Father’s people.” Hurt noted his disappointment with Mormon men who would “so far forget themselves, and the relations they 48 Mix, Memoranda, August 15, 1855, Ex. Doc. 71, 177–78.

46 Charles E. Mix, Memoranda for Secretary of the Interior, August 15, 1855, Ex. Doc. 71, 177–78.

49 Hurt to Elliott, October 1, 1856, Letters Received, Utah Superintendency, roll 898, M 234, Records of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Record Group 75, NARA.

47 Mix to McClelland, July 10, 1855, in Annual Report, 1857, 306.

50 Elliott to Manypenny, December 20, 1856, Letters Received, Utah Superintendency.


56 Washington, D.C., Daily National Intelligencer, April 20, 1857; see also National Era, May 24, 1855; Philadelphia North American and United States Gazette, January 20, 1857; Prucha, Documents, 91. 57 Prucha, Documents, 91.

51 Hurt to Young, October 31, 1856, Ex. Doc. 71, 181–82. 52 Hurt to Young, September 1856, in George W. Manypenny, Annual Report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs for the Year 1856 (Washington, D.C.: William A. Harris, 1857), 228; National Era, June 28, 1855. 53 Francis Paul Prucha, Indian Policy in the United States: Historical Essays (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1981), 37. 54 Letter to James Barbour, Secretary of War, March 1, 1826, American State Papers, Indian Affairs (Washington, D.C.: Gales and Seaton, 1834), 2:653, available online at memory.loc.gov/ammem/amlaw/lwsplink.html; Jay H. Buckley, William Clark: Indian Diplomat (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2008), 165–71. 55 Richard E. Jensen, ed., The Pawnee Mission Letters, 1834–1851 (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2010), xxx, 81; extract from the Annual Report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, November 25, 1838, in Prucha, Documents, 72–73.

58 For more on Mowry and his disposition towards the Mormons, see William P. MacKinnon, “Sex, Subalterns, and Steptoe: Army Behavior, Mormon Rage, and Utah War Anxieties,” Utah Historical Quarterly 76, no. 3 (2008): 227–46. 59 Mowry, List of Camps, 12. In an August 1856 letter, Utah Deputy Surveyor Columbus L. Craig similarly observed Mormon Indian policy. Prejudicial to surveying operations in Utah, Craig stated, “Arapeen, a noted chief of the Ute nation, who has been baptized in the church, said to me, afterwards that he ‘had been told by Mormons, in Salt Lake City, that we intended, after surveying the lands, to put the Indians in chains, and drive off the Mormons.’ These facts, given to us by the Indians themselves, confirm a suspicion which I have had respecting the policy which the Mormons have been pursuing in regard to the Indians, which is, that they have been endeavoring in every possible way to establish a difference between Mormons and Americans, to prejudice them against the latter.” Columbus L. Craig

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Sylvester Mowry, a second lieutenant under Steptoe’s command, also observed that Mormons taught regional Indians that a difference existed between themselves and Americans.58 In a report to the U.S. Army adjutant general in July 1855, Mowry stated “that the Utah Indians inhabiting the Valleys of Salt Lake, Juab and Fillmore had been taught that the Mormons were a superior people to the Americans, and that the Americans were the natural enemies of the Indians, while the Mormons were their friends and allies.”59 Mowry explained that

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The education of Native groups during the Jacksonian era was merely one device to gain influence over them.53 The idea behind removal, advocated by William Clark and others, was to move Indians beyond contact with whites where they could be taught farming by federal agents, live in houses on private property, and learn to improve their condition.54 Among the federally approved agents who interacted with Indians were a federal field representative (often an Indian agent or subagent who was appointed by the president with congressional consent) and other whites employed by the Office of Indian Affairs, including religious missionaries, farmers, teachers, and blacksmiths. Groups like the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions or the Missionary Society for the Methodist Episcopal Church typically recommended potential employees to the federal Indian office.55 With the federal government’s consent, small groups of Protestant men and women carried out the missions to the Indians in the antebellum West. The largest— and primary—difference between those missionaries and Mormon missionaries was that

in the former, small groups of men and women from different religions went west and created missions to Indians with federal sanction. Mormons, on the other hand, had a unique religion, were sanctioned by the government only inasmuch as Brigham Young was the de facto superintendent of Indian affairs, and belonged to a large, cohesive, and semi-autonomous group that lived among the Indians. Through their missions, the Mormons became the primary white contacts of Indians in the Great Basin, which created a fear of a large Mormon-Indian alliance against the United States.56 Though the federal government entrusted other religious groups with communicating and interacting with Indians, officials in that body—particularly those in the Office of Indian Affairs—apparently became uncomfortable with the Mormon proselytizing program.57

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sustain, both to Indians and to government, as to be guilty of gross misrepresentations so fatal to their own peace and prosperity.”51 When federal officials observed the ways in which Mormons represented themselves as different from other Americans, perhaps they perceived the Mormons as not loyal citizens. Finally, in a separate letter Hurt condemned what he viewed as the introduction of improper conduct toward and education of the area’s indigenous groups.52

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during his march along the Santa Clara, Virgin, Muddy, and Vegas Rivers he encountered “several hundred Warriors who had undergone the same tutelage.” “In each tribe,” he stated, “two or more Mormon Missionaries were found, whose object was to impress upon the Indians the belief in the inferiority and hostility of the Americans and the superiority and friendship of the Mormons.”60 In these conversations reported by Mowry, indigenous peoples, as conveyors of information, helped to shape and confirm the idea of Mormon influence over the region’s Native groups. To counteract what he considered a “mischievous impression made upon them by the Mormons,” Mowry added that he “‘talked’ with all the Chiefs explained to them the true relation existing between Americans and Mormons.”61 “The enmity of the Mormons went so far in one instance,” Mowry detailed, To induce the Chief of the Pah-Utes of the Muddy River to believe that my Command was on its way to attack his tribe. The Squaws and children were hurried into the Canons, and when I arrived on the Muddy the whole tribe was in “War paint” to receive me. By kindness I so completely changed the opinion of this Chief that he followed the train some miles to “renew the assurances” of his friendship towards all Americans.62 The Paiutes may have observed the response their words and actions elicited and perhaps used this opportunity to leverage economic or material benefit from their conversation. It is not clear if Mowry or anyone in his detachment spoke any Indian dialect, let alone Paiute. Native Americans in the “Valleys of Salt Lake, Juab and Fillmore” likely had a limited command of the English language. Therefore, it is difficult to discern how much of the conversation and corrective offered by Mowry

in his report actually occurred. Nevertheless, the Indians decided to share information with Mowry and other federal agents they encountered, which became vital to the agents’ understanding of Indian relations in Utah and added to the tensions between the Mormons and the federal government. The information they chose to share prompted federal agents to consider that the messages Mormons delivered amongst the region’s indigenous groups would hinder larger federal efforts in the territory. According to the reports they sent to Washington—based partly on the information received from the Native peoples—Mowry, like Hurt and Steptoe, argued that the teachings of the Mormons contradicted the aims of the federal government and its agents. While Mormons and federal agents competed over how best to manage the Indians, Native actions and reactions to the competing entities often informed white decision making. Mowry requested that troops “be sent over this route every year, with instructions to the Commanding Officer to seek for opportunities to meet the Indians and assure them by kindness and by presents of the real strength and good intentions of the Government towards them. If some such precaution is not taken I am satisfied they will become formidable allies of the Mormons.”63 The lieutenant echoed the fear of others that the Mormons’ influence with the Indians was problematic and identified some of the most powerful tribal leaders of the region, including Wákara, Arapeen, and Kanosh, as chiefs who became members of the LDS church.64 Like Steptoe and Gunnison before him, Mowry concluded that beneficial Indian relations and federal control in the region required a permanent armed presence to safeguard travel routes and halt the growth of the potential Mormon-Indian alliance.

60 Mowry, List of Camps, 12.

Reports to the commissioner of Indian Affairs from Utah’s Indian agents, missives from army officers who had previously served in Utah, other federal reports, and press accounts all expressed misgivings about Mormon missionaries exciting prejudices among the region’s tribes contrary to the interests and policy of the federal government and in direct violation

61 Ibid.

63 Ibid.

62 Ibid., 13–14.

64 Ibid.

to David H. Burr, August 1, 1856, 116–17. Thomas A. Hendricks to Jacob Thompson, February 3, 1858, 114, and David H. Burr to Thomas A. Hendricks, August 30, 1856, 115–16, Ex. Doc. 71.


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65 Hurt to Manypenny, May 2, 1855, in Annual Report, 1857, 305. 66 Prucha, Documents, 65. Prucha’s edited volume contains the full text of the Trade and Intercourse Act, U.S. Statutes at Large, 4:729–35. 67 The act’s tenth section reads, “That the superintendent of Indian affairs, and Indian agents and sub-agents, shall have authority to remove from the Indian country

utah state historical society

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Two sections of the Trade and Intercourse Act also empowered the U.S. president with the legal authority to send forth the army to apprehend anyone breaking this law.67 Though

Garland Hurt at an Indian farm in 1856. —

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of the Trade and Intercourse Act of 1834.65 Section thirteen of that act declared illegal “any citizen or other person residing within the United States or the territory thereof, [to] send any talk, speech, message, or letter to any Indian nation, tribe, chief, or individual, with an intent to produce a contravention or infraction of any treaty or other law of the United States, or to disturb the peace and tranquility of the United States.” Section fourteen further held that anyone who knowingly transmitted such a communication “to or from any Indian nation, tribe, chief, or individual” faced a large fine. Finally, section fifteen punished anyone who “shall alienate, or attempt to alienate, the confidence” of Native Americans from the government.66 According to federal representatives, the Mormons had indeed alienated Great Basin Indians from other American citizens and especially the U.S. government through their teachings and gift-giving practices.

263 reports and letters from federal representatives in Utah may have been flawed or somewhat exaggerated, they provided evidence of Mormons violating that act and they were the primary pieces of intelligence that key members of the federal government in Washington read and understood. Mormon missionary diaries and the church’s newspaper, the Deseret News, likewise suggested that the Mormons were attempting to ally with the Indians both to influence them and to prove themselves more friendly than U.S. government officials.68 The 1834 act authorized the president to use all persons found therein contrary to law; and the President of the United States is authorized to direct the military force to be employed in such removal.” In addition, the twenty-third section states “that it shall be lawful for the military force of the United States to be employed in such manner and under such regulations as the President may direct, in the apprehension of every person who shall or may be found in the Indian country in violation of any of the provisions of this act.” Prucha, Documents, 65–66. See also Mix to McClelland, August 15, 1855, in Annual Report, 1857, 307–308. 68 Brooks, Journal of the Southern Indian Mission, 25, 133; Bean, Journal, December 1, 30, 1855, CHL.


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military force against all persons in a given territory acting contrary to that law; officials in Washington, knowing only what they read in the reports from their agents in Utah and perhaps what they read in the newspapers, believed that the Mormons and their missionaries had violated federal law.69

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Early 1857 brought legislative changes to territorial Indian affairs intended to provide more structure and federal control over the West. Congress renewed George Manypenny’s 1854 effort for efficiency in Indian affairs by separating “the governorship from the office of Superintendent of Indian Affairs.”70 Congress enacted legislation dividing the dual responsibilities combined in the office of superintendent of Indian affairs and governor in the territories of Utah, New Mexico, Oregon, and Washington. On March 3, 1857, Congress authorized the discontinuance of the combined office in these western territories by passing the Indian Appropriations Act. Section three of the act concluded with a great assertion of federal power over territorial Indian policy by stipulating that the superintendents of Indian affairs in those four territories could not negotiate treaties with any tribes “unless instructed thereto by the President of the United States.”71 The Appropriations Act began to change the dynamics of power in Utah Territory, as one man—Brigham Young—no longer legally supervised the interests of both whites and American Indians.72 69 Trade and Intercourse Act, Section 23, U.S. Statutes at Large, 4:729–35. 70 According to acting Commissioner of Indian Affairs Charles E. Mix, “As early as April 10, 1854, this office made a report to the department, requesting that immediate steps should be taken to separate the superintendency of Indian affairs for Utah from the office of governor of said Territory, which, however, was not effected until during the last session (the thirtyfourth) of Congress.” Mix to Jacob Thompson, February 22, 1858, Ex. Doc. 71, 125; see also George W. Manypenny, Annual Report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs (Washington D.C., 1855), 14. 71 Indian Appropriations Act, Laws of the United States, Appendix to the Cong. Globe, 34th Cong., 3d Sess. (1857), 408. 72 Nevertheless, during the Utah War, Young continued to refer to himself as both governor and superintendent. In a letter to the commander of the army, dated September 29, 1857, Young stated, “I am still the governor and superintendent of Indian affairs for this Territory, no successor having been appointed and

Both the 1857 Indian Appropriations Act and the 1834 Trade and Intercourse Act clarified, if not established, the president’s power over federal territories and in Indian affairs. In addition to making the negotiation of territorial Indian treaties a presidential prerogative, the Appropriations Act placed the power to appoint superintendents of Indian affairs in the four western territories with the president.73 The Mormons, primarily through their missionaries, had reportedly inflamed insubordination and discontent amongst Great Basin Indians against American citizens; accordingly, the federal government moved to sustain its legal position toward Native Americans and the territories by giving itself the necessary power and the means of enforcement.74 On May 28, 1857—nearly three months after the Indian Appropriations Act passed and in what became known as the Utah War—President James Buchanan ordered 2,500 troops to Utah for the purpose of vindicating national sovereignty in Utah. Buchanan appointed judges; a new governor, Alfred Cumming of Georgia; and a new superintendent of Indian affairs for Utah, Jacob Forney. For their protection, he sent these officials with a substantial military force, which, if called upon by the governor, was to act as a posse comitatus in the execution of the laws.75 Secretary of State Lewis Cass wrote to Cumming in July 1857 and told the new governor that the president was “determined to exert all the requisite power of the Executive to preserve the authority of the law in the qualified as provided by law, nor have I been removed by the President of the United States.” Though Young technically remained governor until Alfred Cumming arrived in the territory and took the oath of office at Fort Bridger in November 1857, his official role as superintendent of Indian affairs ended on March 3, 1857. Jacob Forney did not relieve Young of his duties as superintendent of Indian affairs until he arrived in Utah in November 1857. Brigham Young to the Officer Commanding the Forces now invading Utah Territory, September 29, 1857, in Message from the President, 35th Cong., 1 Sess., Ex. Doc. 2 (December 16, 1857), 32 (hereafter Ex. Doc. 2); Indian Appropriations Act (1857), 408. 73 Indian Appropriations Act (1857), 408. 74 John B. Floyd, Report of the Secretary of War, Ex. Doc. 2, 16. 75 James Buchanan, First Annual Message of the President, December 8, 1857, Journal of the Senate, 25. See also Joan M. Jensen, Army Surveillance in America, 1775–1980 (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1991), 20.


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In his cover letter to the “copies of all papers on file in the Indian office,” Mix singled out the claims of Jacob Holeman and Garland Hurt. Mix reiterated what Holeman had stated in 1851, that “Brigham Young ‘made use of his office as superintendent and of the money of the government to promote the interests of his church.’” The acting commissioner also summarized Hurt’s 1855 correspondence and emphasized that the Mormons intended “to teach them that the Indians were the rightful owners of the American soil, that it had been wrongfully taken from them by the whites, and that the Great Spirit had sent the Mormons among them to help them recover their rights.”79 In a private letter not included in the official report, the former Utah Territory chief justice John Kinney similarly advised the White House on the state of affairs in the Great Basin. Among Kinney’s six points were that the “Mormons

76 Cass to Cumming, July 30, 1857, Brigham Young Papers. 77 Message from the President, Ex. Doc. 2, 25. 78 Eighty-seven of 215 pages of the Buchanan adminis-

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In early December 1857, Buchanan delivered his first annual message to Congress and to the American people, which included a section on the decision to send federal troops to Utah Territory. The president highlighted the growing national fear that as superintendent of Indian affairs in Utah Territory, Brigham Young “has had an opportunity of tampering with the Indian tribes, and exciting their hostile feelings against the United States.”77 In the Buchanan administration’s official report on the intelligence that informed the decision to order a military expedition to Utah Territory, nearly a third of the number of documents contained in the report concerned Indian affairs. Those forty-six documents described the “policy pursued by the Mormons,” which the then-acting commissioner of Indian affairs Charles Mix believed “aimed at the establishment of an independent Mormon empire” by inciting Indians to malicious activities against all non-Mormons in the territory.78

courtesy w. paul reeve

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This April 1858 cartoon from Yankee Notions depicts the perception of a Mormon-Indian alliance against the federal government. —

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Territory of Utah.”76 Executing or enforcing federal law in the territory was the key motive in sending the army to Utah. The federal government believed that Utahns had failed to uphold federal law. Among the laws that its officers perceived as violated were federal Indian laws: laws that empowered the president to send an army against people acting contrary to them.

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tration’s official report on the Utah War concerned Indian affairs. Ex. Doc. 71, 124–211; Bigler and Bagley, Mormon Rebellion, 11. 79 Charles E. Mix to Jacob Thompson, February 22, 1858, Ex. Doc. 71, 125.


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are inimical to the U.S. Government” and that they send out men “every year for the ostensible purpose of converting Indians but really to poison their minds against the government and Americans and also to make them their allies in case of any difficulty with the U.S.”80 This letter demonstrates that Buchanan and his cabinet knew of and had received documents additional to those printed in the official report that the public and Congress were not aware of when they acted. The Buchanan administration decided to send the army to Utah in part because of the voluminous documents on difficulties with the Mormons concerning Indian affairs and because of the administration’s belief that Mormon missionaries were breaking the laws of the United States by attempting to turn Native Americans into hostile enemies.81 A restoration of federal authority in Utah Territory was therefore in order; this required that U.S. troops go to Utah Territory to enforce federal Indian policy. Commissioner of Indian Affairs James W. Denver and Brigham Young conducted little correspondence, but in the fall of 1857, in the midst of the Utah War, they exchanged a few intense letters on Indian policy and the presence of the army in Utah. Young, writing on September 12 with vouchers for expenditures on Indian affairs, reported that Native raiders had taken the lives of many emigrants and a great deal of property. He stated that the reason for the widespread raiding was the abhorrent practice of overland travelers “shooting at every Indian they could see.” Because of that practice, he suggested, “the Indians regard all white men alike their enemies, and kill and plunder whenever they can do so with impunity, and often the innocent suffer for the deeds of the guilty.” Young’s statement implicitly dismissed the ideas of a Mormon-Indian alliance by likening all white people in relation to indigenous people. He continued,

80 Kinney to Jeremiah Black, March 20, 1857, in William P. MacKinnon, At Sword’s Point, Part 1: A Documentary History of the Utah War to 1858 (Norman, OK: Arthur H. Clark, 2008), 110. 81 Winfield Scott to John B. Floyd, May 26, 1857, in M. Hamlin Cannon, “Winfield Scott and the Utah Expedition,” Military Affairs 5 (1941): 208–211; Mix to Thompson, Ex. Doc. 71, 125.

It is hard to make an Indian believe that the whites are their friends, and that the Great Father wishes to do them good, when, perhaps, the very next party which crosses their path shoots them down like wolves. This trouble with the Indians only exists along the line of travel west, and beyond the influence of our settlements. The Mormon leader further expressed his concern over the coming of the army. Though white settlers in other frontier territories typically requested military protection, the governor considered the stationing of the army in Utah superfluous and potentially damaging to the territory’s white inhabitants, who already had precarious relations with Native peoples. As a thinly veiled threat Young stated, “The troops must be kept away, for it is a prevalent fact that, wherever there are the most of these we may expect to find the greatest amount of hostile Indians and the least security to persons and property.”82 In November 1857, Denver wrote a return missive. The commissioner emphasized to Young the necessity of stationing troops in the heart of the territory by alluding to reports that the Mormons had violated the federal Trade and Intercourse Act by arousing Great Basin Indians to animosity against the United States and its citizens. Denver advised Young that the Department of the Interior had learned from reliable sources that, rather than encourage good relations between Indians and Americans, “you have studiously endeavored to impress on the minds of the Indians that there was a difference between your own sect . . . and the Government, and other citizens of the United States—that the former were their friends and the latter their enemies.”83 The commissioner expressed regret that such a state of affairs existed but noted that the president made the decision to send the army to the territory with “the strong arm 82 Young to Denver, September 12, 1857, Brigham Young Papers. 83 Denver to Young, November 11, 1857, Letters Sent, 1824–1886, M21, Records of the Office of Indian Affairs, Record Group 75, NARA. For more on Denver’s tenure as commissioner, see Robert M. Kvasnicka and Herman J. Viola, eds. The Commissioners of Indian Affairs, 1824– 1977 (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1979), 70– 73.


During this period of tension, unrelated violence broke out in southern Utah Territory. Between September 7 and 11, 1857, approximately 120 California-bound emigrants from Arkansas and Missouri were killed at Mountain Meadows near Cedar City. Mormon settlers in southern Utah, aided by some Native Americans, perpetrated this brutal massacre. The massacre came to symbolize Mormon savagery in the national media in the years and decades following the Utah War. The incident also seemingly affirmed the idea behind the Mormon-Indian alliance, as the press stereotyped Mormons and Indians and portrayed them as working together to perpetrate this crime. The 84 Denver to Young, November 12, 1857, Letters Sent, 1824– 1886.

In the early months of 1858, newspaper coverage about the Utah War speculated wildly on the strength of the Indian-Mormon alliance. The San Francisco Daily Evening Bulletin wrote of a group of Comanche and Cheyenne Indians “who had been led to believe that the Mormons had 80,000 fighting [indigenous] men well equipped for service, [who] were to be employed in the spring, under Mormon influence, in harassing and cutting off supply trains sent to the relief of Colonel Johnston.”89 On April 28, 1858, the New York Herald ran 87 Among the studies to consider on Mountain Meadows are Juanita Brooks, The Mountain Meadows Massacre (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1950); Will Bagley, Blood of the Prophets: Brigham Young and the Massacre at Mountain Meadows (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2004); Ronald W. Walker, Richard E. Turley Jr., and Glen M. Leonard, Massacre at Mountain Meadows (New York: Oxford University Press, 2008); and Douglas Seefeldt, “Horrible Massacre of Emigrants!!: The Mountain Meadows Massacre in Public Discourse,” accessed June 18, 2014, http://mountainmeadows.unl. edu. See also Gary Bunker and Davis Bitton, “Illustrated Periodical Images of Mormons, 1850–1860,” Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought 10 (1977): 90.

85 Ibid.

88 John B. Weller, Inaugural Address, January 8, 1858, California State Library, Sacramento.

86 Dimick B. Huntington, Journal, 1845–1859, August 10, 16, September 1, 1857, MS 1419, CHL.

89 San Francisco Daily Evening Bulletin, February 16, 1858; Ripley (OH) Bee, January 23, 1858.

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As the U.S. Army approached Utah Territory in the late summer of 1857, the question of a Mormon-Indian military alliance remained. It is unclear to what extent Mormons approached regional Native groups regarding such an alliance, or vice versa; it seems, however, some overtures were made. In mid-August 1857, Dimick Huntington met with various bands of Utes and Goshutes spreading the message that the army would kill the Mormons and then all of the Native peoples. Huntington told the Utes and Goshutes he met with that “they and the Mormons was one.” In early September 1857, Huntington and Young encouraged Anterro, a leader of the Uintah Utes, to “be at peace with all men except the Americans.”86

In early 1858, public discourse continued to propagate the idea of a subversive Mormon-Indian alliance. In January 1858, with the Utah War still unresolved, California Governor John Weller made the connection between the two groups several times in his inaugural address. As he discussed overland emigration to the Pacific Coast, Weller suggested, “The Mormons and Indians on the one hand, are a heartless monopoly, having no sympathy with our people (and) on the other, may diminish this immigration, so essential in developing the resources of the state.”88 Weller, like much of the rest of the nation, believed that the army could diminish the power of a Mormon-Indian alliance and make the region safe for continued American expansion.

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Denver concluded by lambasting Young’s tenure as governor and superintendent of Indian affairs. He believed that Young, as “a subordinate officer,” had forgotten his duty and had done nothing but use “his official position” to “injure” overland emigrants—“his fellow-citizens”—and to “alienate” the region’s indigenous peoples “from loyalty to their government.”85 He concluded by employing the language of the Trade and Intercourse Act in yet another allusion to the belief of federal agents that the Mormons had violated that law.

massacre likewise offered another, later, opportunity for the federal government to encroach on the Mormons as investigators probed the crime for decades after its occurrence. Violence in the territory was real, whatever the motives behind the Mountain Meadows massacre.87

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of power to compel obedience” to federal laws, particularly those concerning Indian policy.84

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Native peoples were acting on their own. . . . The Mormons did not and could not control them.

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an article on the Utah War and the reported ongoing efforts of Mormon missionaries among the Indians on the route between Salt Lake City and San Bernardino “to organize the tribes and precipitate hostilities with the United States.”90 These reports added to earlier speculation about a Mormon-Indian alliance. For instance,

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a Norristown, Pennsylvania, newspaper worried that the Mormons had “20,000 Indian allies, whom they are ready to furnish with arms and horses in an emergency. These Indians are partially instructed in the Mormon religion— enough to make them superstitious in regard to the God of a superior race, yet modifying none of their ferocity.”91 Indian and Mormon complicity was also feared in the Pacific Northwest, where Mormons had sent emissaries to “many of the Indians of Oregon” and had allegedly prepared them to “join the Mormon force.”92 Another report from the Nashville Daily News exaggerated the closeness of “numerous bands of the Piute Indians, who were well armed, pretty comfortably attired, and apparently on very good terms with the Mormons.” The Tennessee newspaper also reported, “There is no question that the Mormons in all the settlements are fully posted on the war question and the Indians seem quite as much interested.”93 Other newspapers reported that Young and “350 of his followers” had visited “the Bannaks, Flatheads, and Nezperces” for the “purpose of uniting them with his own forces against the

92 See Ripley (OH) Bee, November 7, 1857. 93 Nashville Daily News, January 31, 1858.

In late 1857 and early 1858, Brigham Young corresponded with regional tribal leaders. His letters do not paint the portrait of a martial alliance. In November, Young explained in a letter to Washakie, the leader of a band of Shoshone, that the army was coming to fight the Mormons. Young articulated his desire to see the Shoshone remain neutral and expressed hope that Washakie and his band would not join the Americans in fighting against the Mormons. Young could not be sure of what actions the Shoshone or any other Native band would take at this time of conflict. The Mormon leader’s letter indicates that neither he nor his followers could have controlled the Shoshone. It also suggests that their alliance, if they had one at all, was in flux.95 In January 1858, a Ute leader named Arapeen wrote to Young to ask why the Americans were coming to fight the Mormons and the Indians. Arapeen proposed to fight against the troops. Via an unknown interpreter, the Ute leader stated, Tell them that I am not afriad of them I know how to fight & I under stand all about the mountain tell the Americans that I have got a plenty of Powder & lead Guns & caps & I now how to use them & that they must not come on my Land to shead bllood . . . if they will not hear good counsil they will find me & my men a verry formidable fo.96

94 Lowell (MA) Daily Citizen and News, June 8, 1857; see also New York Herald, December 1, 1857.

90 New York Herald, April 28, 1858. 91 Norristown Register and Montgomery November 24, December 8, 1857.

general government. If the matter comes to blows, Brigham will stop the emigration across the plains, and take possession of the country.”94 Though these types of reports informed what the public “knew” about Utah and the West at the time, outside of them and the perceptions of federal officials, no evidence confirms the supposition that Mormons and local indigenous groups had formed a military alliance against the United States. In fact, some evidence suggests the opposite.

Democrat,

95 Young to Washakie, November 2, 1857, Brigham Young Papers. 96 “Arrapine” to Young, January 3, 1858, Brigham Young Papers.


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The next month, Arapeen sent another letter to Young that demonstrated his intent to fight with the Mormons against the army. The Ute leader told Young that the army had tried to “hire the Indians to take the Mormon Cattle & Horses in the Spring,” though Arapeen encouraged his people to avoid the army and that type of behavior. Arapeen then stated, “If the americans come here and want to drive the Mormons from this land I will geather all the indians from the sorounding mountains and fight them untill they will be glad for peace.”97 Young appears to have encouraged neutrality and, while Arapeen seemed willing to form an alliance with the Mormons to fight the Americans, or to fight them outright, the LDS leader evidently did not take Arapeen up on his offer. If Young did indeed control the Indians and could call tens of thousands of Native allies to arms as the American public believed, these and other letters do

97 “Arapene” to Young, February 28, 1858, Brigham Young Papers. For a similar situation, see Jacob Hamblin, Diary, December 23, 1854, Jacob Hamblin Papers, 1850–1877, MS 1951, CHL; and Todd M. Compton, A Frontier Life: Jacob Hamblin, Explorer and Indian Missionary (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 2013), 67–68.

A group of Shoshone Indians, including Chief Washakie (center front). —

utah state historical society

not so indicate.98 They place significant doubt on that idea and instead shed light onto the decisions of Native Americans to act according to their best interests in the winter of 1858. After the army arrived in Utah Territory, reports from federal officials in Utah allowed those in Washington to perceive that the balance of power had shifted and relations with Native Americans had changed in the Great Basin. The newly arrived superintendent of Indian affairs for Utah Territory, Jacob Forney, who had been appointed to his post on August 27, 1857, labored amongst as many indigenous groups as he could to ascertain their loyalty to the government. He sought to prevent them from assisting 98 See also Young to Ben Simons, March 22, 1858, Brigham Young Papers.

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the Mormons in the ongoing conflict with the United States. In an early February 1858 letter to Charles Mix, Forney quieted the rumor of a large-scale Mormon-Indian alliance. He wrote, “I see it stated in the papers, & the impression seems to be general, that some of the Indian tribes, are in the employ of B. Young, there is no truth in this, & I think I stated so, to the Department, in my communications.”99 Though the reports of other federal officials and newspapers suggested a widespread Mormon-Indian conspiracy, Forney’s assessment of the realities on the ground indicated that Native peoples were acting on their own and making decisions for their own best interests. The Mormons did not and could not control them. However, Forney also sent a mixed message as he declared that the Mormons frequently importuned the indigenous groups “to steal from & murder emigrants.” While he indicated that he observed little truth to the reports of a large-scale Mormon-Indian alliance, he simultaneously accused the Mormons—as had earlier accounts—of using their influence with Indians in nefarious ways.100 Nevertheless, in a September 1858 letter, Forney wrote that his endeavors to establish peaceful relations with territorial Indians had proven successful beyond his expectations. The superintendent concluded his letter with a strong declaration: “This route to California is now free from all danger from Indians.”101 The new territorial governor, Alfred Cumming, similarly apprised Secretary of State Lewis Cass in 1858 “that emigrants and others adopting the usual precautions for their safety against the Indians, may pass through Utah Territory without hindrance or molestation.”102 Just a few months after the arrival of the army and new federal officials in Utah, the government’s officers reported their perceived success in controlling the territory, its arteries of travel, and its Indian affairs.

President Buchanan lauded the efforts of the army in his second annual message, which he delivered on December 6, 1858. Buchanan’s speech revealed some of his administration’s desired outcomes in sending the army to Utah. “The march of the army to Salt Lake city, through the Indian Territory,” he asserted, “has had a powerful effect in restraining the hostile feelings against the United States which existed among the Indians in that region, and in securing emigrants to the Far West against their depredations. This will also be the means of establishing military posts and promoting settlements along the route” to expand federal influence.103 The president’s specific mention of the effect of the military on Indian affairs in Utah was significant. In an early draft of his message, Buchanan stated that the march of the army had a “happy” effect on Indian relations, but he changed the wording to “powerful,” likely to demonstrate the importance of that action in protecting federal law and extending federal sovereignty in the territory.104 Because of the Utah War, the army established two major military posts in Utah Territory for surveillance, protection, and the promotion of settlement. Strategically considered, Camp Floyd and Fort Bridger occupied commanding positions on important lines of travel and were located in close proximity to both Mormon settlements and indigenous homelands. At the end of 1858, with the new governor in place and the army stationed in Utah Territory, the president felt satisfied that the federal government now controlled that critical geographic crossroads and its peoples.105 Indian administration was a major focal point of federal activity in the West. On one hand, the government gave civil administrators the primary responsibility for organizing and managing settlement and expansion.106 The federal government accepted the numerous, if some

103 James Buchanan, Second Annual Message of the President, December 6, 1858, Journal of the Senate, 15. 99 Forney to Mix, February 10, 1858, Indian Affairs Correspondence, USHS. 100 Ibid. 101 Report of the Secretary of the Interior, Ex. Doc. 2, 565. 102 Cumming to Cass, May 12, 1858, Report of the Secretary of War, Ex. Doc. 2, 99.

104 James Buchanan, Notes, etc. Regarding Utah, reel 53, James Buchanan Papers, MS Group 8, Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. 105 James Buchanan, Mr. Buchanan’s Administration on the Eve of the Rebellion (New York: D. Appleton, 1866), 237–38. 106 Rockwell, Indian Affairs, 2–3.


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times flawed, reports of these administrators, which demonstrated Mormon violation of federal Indian policy, especially the Trade and Intercourse Act.107 On the other hand, Mormon civil administrators, particularly Brigham Young, directed territorial Indian policy in accordance with their religious views; they carried out peacekeeping measures by proselytizing to the indigenous population, which James Buchanan and other federal officials believed “excited their hostile feelings against the United States.”108 Buchanan sent the U.S. Army to enforce federal laws and establish a permanent federal presence in Utah Territory. As a part of this process, the federal government, through the army, reclaimed national sovereignty over Indian affairs, a vital facet of federal activity in Utah and an important part of the context in which the Utah War occurred.

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Brent M. Rogers is a historian for the Joseph Smith Papers Project. He earned a Ph.D. in nineteenth-century U.S. history from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. The Mormon History Association gave Rogers its “best dissertation award” in 2014. He wishes to thank W. Paul Reeve for his generosity in sharing the Yankee Notions cartoon pictured herein and for his insightful comments on an earlier iteration of this article. 107 Charles James Faulkner, Speech of the Hon. C. J. Faulkner, of Virginia, in favor of An Increase of the Army and in Opposition to the Employment of Volunteers in Utah, delivered in the House of Representatives, March 9, 1858 (Washington, D.C., 1858). 108 Buchanan, First Annual Message, December 8, 1857, 25.

WEB EXTRA At history.utah.gov/indian-policy we offer faithful reproductions of some of the primary documents Rogers used to construct his analysis of Indian policy.


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Children at play in Provo, Utah, circa 1890s. —

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The Abuse and Murder of Isaac Whitehouse BY

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A long course of the most inhuman cruelty C A R MAC K

273 On October 28, 1855, James H. Martineau, the Parowan City recorder and Iron County militia adjutant, made a chilling entry in his journal.1 “I heard of the sudden death and burial of an orphan boy named Izaac Whitehouse,” he wrote. “He died last night and was secretly buried in the night.”2 The next day, Martineau made another entry in his journal, detailing the abuses the boy had suffered at the hands of his custodians, Samuel and Elizabeth Baker. Martineau wrote that the body of the boy, who was an orphan of about ten years of age, was dug up and brought to the town hall where H. D. Bayless, the justice of the peace, held an inquest. When the boy’s body was examined, it showed obvious signs of violence. “It was a horrible sight to see,” Martineau wrote. The boy had been partially buried in his dirty clothes and excrement. “His hands and feet had been tied with a cord, (the marks of which were still shown in the flesh) and then he had been placed in a water ditch, and partly chilled and partly drowned. The Sand had washed into and settled in the folds of his Clothing. His body had large purple spots where he had been kicked or struck, the skin being badly abrazed and broken.”3 1 For a parallel article on the murder of Isaac Whitehouse, see Connell O’Donovan, “The 1855 Murder of Isaac Whitehouse in Parowan, Utah,” Journal of Mormon History 40, no. 4 (Fall 2014). 2 James H. Martineau, Journal, October 28, 1855, Book 1, p. 85, MSS FAC 1499, Henry B. Huntington Library, San Marino, California. 3 Ibid.


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When Samuel Baker was confronted with the crime, he denied responsibility, but his wife confessed and showed them the cord with which the boy had been tied. Martineau reported that, during the inquest, “The testimony of the people revealed a long course of the most inhuman cruelty, perpetuated on the poor boy, whose father and mother, dying while on their way here, left him to the care of Mrs. Baker, the sister of his mother. After she got here, she herself became a mother, and hated the boy most intensely, and incited Baker to his cruel deeds.”4 Aside from the grim details of the crime revealed in Martineau’s journal, we know little about the events leading up to Isaac’s horrifying demise. It is known, however, that eight-yearold Isaac Whitehouse had accompanied his parents, Jacob and Rebecca, on the ship Windermere with other westbound Latter-day Saints who left from Liverpool, England, on February 22, 1854. The Whitehouse family, of Watford Locks, Northamptonshire, England, traveled among a total of 477 Mormons under the charge of Daniel Garn, an elder in the church. Isaac, who was later described as “dumb” or mute (sometimes due to deafness or intellectual impairment) was listed as eight years of age, traveling in the company of his parents, a threeyear-old brother, Joseph, and his twenty-eightyear-old unmarried aunt, Elizabeth Ward.5 The record is silent as to the cause of Jacob’s and Rebecca’s deaths, but as many as nine passengers on the Windermere had succumbed to smallpox on the long and dreadful passage from England.6 Adverse winds and heavy gales hampered the first five weeks of travel. Thirty-seven passengers and two crewmen contracted smallpox on the voyage, but “at this crisis the malady 4 Ibid. 5 The passenger list notes Isaac’s father, Jacob, as age thirty-two, and his mother, Rebecca, as age thirty. Passenger List for Windermere, April 24, 1854, NARA Series M259, roll 39, film no. 200177, LDS Family History Library (hereafter FHL), Salt Lake City, Utah. For more on the 1854 voyage of the Windermere, see Conway Sonne, Ships, Saints, and Mariners: A Maritime Encyclopedia of Mormon Migration, 1830–1890 (Salt Lake City: University of Utah, 1987). 6 Passenger List for Windermere. While the ship’s captain reported nine deaths, Sonne puts the death toll at ten. See Sonne, Ships, 200.

was suddenly checked in answer to prayer.”7 After sixty-one days at sea, the Windermere arrived in the Port of New Orleans on April 23, 1854. Isaac’s parents were not listed among the dead who lost their lives to smallpox on the Windermere, but it was reported that a number of passengers died later from illness on the trek west.8 According to Eliza Goodson Jex, who had emigrated with the Windermere company, “Some lost mothers, some fathers, some both and then the poor children were left to the mercy of others which was sorrowful to see.”9As was the common treatment of orphaned children on the journey west, Isaac and his little brother were placed under the care of their aunt to be raised in Utah.10 The Windermere’s roster also listed Samuel George Baker, a pearl worker from Birmingham, and his wife Sarah, noting nothing more than their ages, twenty-four and twenty-eight, respectively. A three-year-old son, Edwin, traveled with them.11 The Baker family had 7 “Church Emigration,” The Contributor 13 (September 1892): 509–10. See also Sonne, Ships, 200. 8 “Foreign Intelligence,” Latter-day Saints’ Millennial Star, June 3, 1854, 345–46. According to William Watton Burton, a traveler in the Garn Company, “We had no new cases of smallpox after leaving New Orleans, but were afflicted with cholera, which proved fatal to many from that time until June 19th, when we commenced our journey over the plains from our camping grounds near Kansas City.” Quote from Burton’s autobiography in Andrew Jenson, ed., Latter-day Saint Biographical Encyclopedia, 4 vols. (Salt Lake City: Andrew Jenson History Company, 1901), 1:351. For more on overland deaths caused by cholera, see Ramon Powers and Gene Younger, “Cholera on the Overland Trails, 1832–1869,” Kansas Quarterly 5 (Spring 1973): 32–49; and Herbert C. Milikien, “‘Dead of the Bloody Flux’: Cholera Stalks the Emigrant Trail,” Overland Journal 14 (Autumn 1996): 4–11. For the effects of cholera on the Mormon migration, see Patricia Rushton, “Cholera and Its Impact on Nineteenth-Century Mormon Migration,” BYU Studies 44, no. 2 (2005): 123–44. 9 Eliza Goodson Jex, [Autobiography], in Heber Joseph McKell, comp., Jex Genealogy and Family History (Bountiful, UT: Paragon Press, 1963), 47–48. 10 For more on the kind treatment of orphaned children on the overland trail, see Emmy E. Werner, Pioneer Children on the Journey West (Boulder, CO: Westview, 1995), 164–67; and Elliott West, “Family Life on the Trail West,” History Today 42 (December 1992): 33–39. 11 The British Mission Register for Windermere lists Samuel, a “Pearl Worker” from Birmingham, his wife Sarah, and a son, Edwin G. Baker. British Mission Registers, Book no. 1040, p. 21, film no. 025,690, Emigration Records, European Mission, FHL.


It is impossible to say when the abuse of Isaac Whitehouse began, but it is not unreasonable to conclude that it took place over the better part of a year, until the end of October 1855, when the boy’s body was discovered. At the inquest, 12 “From a Journal of Alma Eliot Russell: The Baker Family,” accessed April 23, 2014, http//trees.ancestryinstitution. com/tree. According to his grave marker, Franklin was born on May 4, 1854 (Franklin Edward Baker, memorial #120421936, accessed July 28, 2014, www.findagrave. com). His death certificate, however, lists his birth date as August 7, 1854 (“Idaho, Death Certificates, 1911–1937,” film no. 1509302, FHL). 13 For the arrival of Garn’s company in Salt Lake City on October 1, 1854, see “Immigration. Oct. 3,” Deseret News, October 5, 1854; and “Church Emigration,” The Contributor 13 (September 1892): 514. 14 See Leonard J. Arrington, “Planning an Iron Industry for Utah, 1851–1858,” Huntington Library Quarterly 21 (May 1958): 237–60, esp. 255–57; Morris A. Shirts and William T. Parry, “The Demise of the Deseret Iron Company: Failure of the Brick Furnace Lining Technology,” Utah Historical Quarterly 56 (Winter 1988): 23–35; and Morris A. Shirts and Kathryn H. Shirts, A Trial Furnace: Southern Utah’s Iron Mission (Provo, UT: Brigham Young University Press, 2001), 343–94.

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Samuel Baker (1830–1912), photographed in his later years. Baker was tried and convicted for the murder of Isaac Whitehouse. —

public member tree, ancestry.com

Samuel and Elizabeth initially denied having anything to do with the crime. Martineau described Samuel as being “cool and defiant throughout” the questioning. Elizabeth’s deceit was soon broken, and as the truth came to light, it became clear that Samuel—aided and supported by his wife—had caused the death of their disabled nephew. On October 30, 1855, the day following the inquest, Martineau recorded that Samuel G. Baker and his wife were “cut off from the Church for their crime, by a unanimous vote of all the people.”15 The people of Parowan showed that they would not allow brutal acts of violence to go without justice. Sometime between the time of the initial inquest and the first two weeks of November, Samuel and Elizabeth made an unsuccessful attempt to escape to California. Unfortunately, Martineau is the only known Parowan diarist to note the escape attempt. No extant account of the tragic affair describes their apprehension, but it is clear that on November 13, the Baker 15 Martineau, Journal, October 30, 1855, Book 1, p. 86.

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After losing his wife to cholera, Samuel Baker now faced a daunting overland trek to Salt Lake City with his three-year-old son and newborn baby boy. After losing her sister and brotherin-law, Elizabeth Ward faced the same grueling journey and was charged with the care of her two young nephews—one of whom was physically disabled. Perhaps out of mutual necessity, Samuel and Elizabeth joined together to shepherd these four children across the plains and into Utah. Baker and Ward were married somewhere on the trail, probably by Daniel Garn, who had solemnized six marriages on the Windermere. The Bakers likely arrived in Parowan sometime in late October or early November 1854.13 Parowan, an economically depressed southern Utah fort community, was inhabited by about 1,200 men, women, and children, who struggled to support the sporadically successful iron works in nearby Cedar City.14

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evidently received financial assistance for their journey from the LDS church’s Perpetual Emigration Fund (PEF). Samuel and his little family survived the turbulent Atlantic crossing and smallpox outbreak, but Sarah reportedly died from cholera on the overland journey to Saint Louis after giving birth to a second son, Franklin Edward.12

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When Deputy U.S. Marshal Alexander Williams reached Parowan with papers for the arrest of Samuel and for the retrieval of witnesses, James H. Martineau was subpoenaed to testify, presumably for his part in the postmortem examination, “much against my will,” he noted.18

couple was brought before Justice Charles Hopkins of the Cedar City precinct. The defendants were prosecuted by Jesse N. Smith, district attorney of the (then) territorial Third Judicial District, and then bound over to appear and answer the charge of murder at the next term of the U.S. District Court.16

On this day, James Martineau wrote to his wife of the uncertainty of the length of his service as witness: “I do not know whether the case of Baker will be got through with whether wend to Parowan for more witnesses, or not. If they do not send for more witnesses, the case will be dispensed of in short order. But if they send for more witnesses, it may take two or three weeks longer.”21 Stout added more detail, writing that the “Jury empannelled and witnesses

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The Bakers and the subpoenaed witnesses, accompanied by the marshal, made the snowy trek to Fillmore and arrived on November 24. After spending a day investigating Baker’s case for his defense, Stout reported on November 26 that he had “commenced [a] suit against Baker the prisoner and in favor of the perpetual Emigration Fund in the sum of $155.20”; in other words, the fine against Baker for his alleged crime might go to pay debt to the PEF.19 Bair, the attorney for the defense, confessed judgment for the amount and its execution. Immediately following the settlement of this suit, Stout wrote that “the Case of The People &c vs Samuel G Baker for murder was taken up Joseph A. Kelting Prosecutor & I & Bair on defense. We moved to quash which was argued half a day Court Quashed first count and sustained the second Prisoner Plead not guilty.”20

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Elizabeth Ward Baker (1826–1913), Isaac Whitehouse’s aunt and Samuel Baker’s wife. —

The grand jury of the Second U.S. District Court presented an indictment against Samuel G. Baker for the murder of Isaac Whitehouse on November 19, 1855. Territorial District Attorney Joseph A. Kelting was appointed as prosecutor. Hosea Stout and John Bair, deputy U.S. district attorneys, acted as counsel for the defense.17 16 Martineau, Journal, November 13, 1855, book 1, p. 87; Jesse N. Smith, Six Decades in the Early West: The Journal of Jesse Nathan Smith, 1834–1906 (Provo, UT: Jesse N. Smith Family Association, 1970), 21. 17 Hosea Stout, On the Mormon Frontier: The Diaries of Hosea Stout, ed. Juanita Brooks, 2 vols. (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press; Utah State Historical Society, 1964), 2:566–68. The minutes of the trial are found in Second District Court Minute Books, Book 3, 1852–

1865, p. 73, 80–87, Series 5319, Utah State Archives and Records Service, Salt Lake City, Utah. 18 Martineau, Journal, November 21, 1855, Book 1, p. 87. 19 Stout, On the Mormon Frontier, 2:567. The amount included court expenses. See Second District Court Minute Books, Book 3, p. 80. For an excellent treatment of companies aided by the PEF, see Polly Aird, “Bound for Zion: The Ten- and Thirteen-Pound Emigrating Companies, 1853–54,” Utah Historical Quarterly 70 (Fall 2002): 300–325. 20 Stout, On the Mormon Frontier, 2:567. 21 James H. Martineau to wife [Susan E.?], November 26, 1855, box 1, fd. 1, James H. Martineau Collection, 1822–1932, MS 4786, LDS Church History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah (hereafter CHL). My sincerest thanks to LaJean Purcell Carruth for transcribing this letter, which was written in the Deseret Alphabet.


On the day of Samuel’s sentencing, December 3, Stout made a poignant statement in his diary: “Mrs Baker now poor and destitute, sentenced to bereft of all she had on earth and her husband sentenced for ten years imprisonment, and herself in a peculiar condition and her fullness of times having expired was delivered of a son, whose name was called Douglass Drummond in token of his some day becoming a great man and a leading Democrat.”25 Recognizing the

In what appears to be a response to questions to local authorities about the abuse and murder of Isaac Whitehouse, the Parowan doctor Calvin C. Pendleton wrote to George A. Smith, a Mormon apostle, only weeks following the sentencing. Pendleton had learned that church authorities had heavily censured the selectmen and others in Parowan regarding the Baker case. Church officials in Salt Lake City believed that the local authorities had been aware of the course of ill treatment of the deceased boy for a considerable length of time prior to his death. Pendleton, in contrast, did not think the LDS 26 Ibid.

24 Stout, On the Mormon Frontier, 2:567.

27 Public records indicate that John S. Baker was born in 1856. Eighth Census of the United States, 1860, California, population schedules (Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1950, 1967), p. 33, San Bernardino, San Salvador township, household 243; Los Angeles County, “California, Great Registers, 1866–1910,” John S. Baker, 09 Jul 1884, p. 67, Norwalk, Los Angeles, California, United States, film no. 976928, FHL. A published biographical sketch of John S. Baker states that his birth was on December 3, 1855, in Riverside County, California. This sketch makes no mention of Samuel and Sarah’s sojourn in Parowan, only adding to the confusing timeline of events. It is apparent that Samuel G. Baker falsified birth and marriage dates to erase all memory of his notorious past in Utah. J. M. Guinn, A History of California and an Extended History of Its Southern Coast Counties, 2 vols. (Los Angeles: Historic Record Company, 1907), 2:2192, s.v. “John S. Baker.”

25 Ibid., 2:568.

28 Stout, On the Mormon Frontier, 2:568–69.

22 Stout, On the Mormon Frontier, 2:567. 23 Martineau, Journal, November 21–26, 1855, Book 1, p. 87. The “strumpet” Martineau referred to was a woman who accompanied Drummond as his wife but who is now believed to have been a prostitute from Washington State named Ada Carroll. See Jan MacKell, Red Light Women of the Rocky Mountains (Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 2009), 296.

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Though such a namesake would indeed have been an irony, public records show that Elizabeth gave birth to a boy in 1856, but she did not name him for the notorious judge. She named him John Samuel Baker, and he was born in Fillmore on December 3, 1855, on the heels of her husband’s jury trial.27 Hosea Stout remarked, “Immediately afater [sic] the advent of the son the officer started with the father to his long 10 years home in prison.”28

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The trial continued on November 27 and occupied most of the day. When the prosecution rested its case on the third day, Stout reported that the judge “took a very active part in the trial against the prisoner and today even took on himself the examination of the witnesses very unbecomingly.”24 Baker’s defense rested on the fifth day of his trial. After five days of court testimony, the case was submitted to the jury. On the morning of December 1, 1855, the court met at nine o’clock and, according to Stout’s diary account, the jury was deadlocked. Then, at one p.m., came the verdict: the jury found Samuel Baker guilty of murder in the second degree. He was sentenced to ten years in the territorial penitentiary.

incongruity of Samuel’s son being born while his father was tried and sentenced under a Jacksonian Democrat, Stout concluded: “How could it be otherwise for born under the heigh auspecies of a Democratic Court while the same day his father was sentenced to the penetentiary for ten long years by said Court and then the names of two such conspicuous Democrats as Senator Douglas and Judge Drummond placed upon his head.”26

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introduced occupying the rest of the day U. S. D. M. Alex Williams again started for Parowan to summons witnesses on the part of Baker’s defence and to execute his property in favor of the P. E. F. Company.”22 Witness Martineau offered little description of the proceedings but noted that Judge William W. Drummond— whom Martineau considered to be unscrupulous—presided over the trial. Drummond, an associate justice of Utah’s territorial supreme court, had come to Utah earlier that year with his mistress, a woman he called “Mrs. Justice Drummond.” An attractive woman took a seat on the stand next to the judge, about whom Martineau later wrote “besides him on the bench sat a strumpet called wife.”23

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clothed as formerly, and his legs appearing in an uncomfortable condition.”30

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Pendleton then made inquiries of a man named Jones who came in company with Baker to Parowan and who was acquainted with the family. He asked Jones if he knew the cause of the boy’s condition. Jones responded that “the filthiness of the boys habits, rendered it impossible to cloth him in a common manner, or keep him in a comfortable condition.”31 The doctor delved no further into the matter since no subsequent complaints of neglect or ill treatment were made to him. According to Pendleton, this was the extent of his knowledge of the sad affair prior to Whitehouse’s murder or until he was called to attend the postmortem examination of the boy’s body.

Brigham Young, circa 1866. —

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278 stake presidency or county court officials knew of the boy’s mistreatment. To his limited knowledge of the matter, a complaint had never been made to the court or to any member of it.29 Pendleton remembered seeing the boy soon after he and his caretakers arrived in Parowan. He reported that Samuel’s treatment of the boy was, at that time, considered improper and that Samuel was “corrected by the teachers being sent to inquire into the matter.” Pendleton remembered observing the boy a few times during the summer season at play in the streets with his friends. At that time Whitehouse appeared comfortable and happy. “The next time I saw him,” Pendleton wrote, “was a few days before his death at mid day as he was passing up the street from towards the field, where as I learned after his death he had been. The day was warm but noticing that he was ^not^ as well 29 Calvin C. Pendleton to George A. Smith, January 9, 1856, box 5, fd. 11, George A. Smith Papers, 1834–1877, MS 1322, CHL. Quotations from this letter are published as they appear in the original, with no corrections or punctuation. Superscripted insertions appear between carets. Editorial additions appear between brackets.

The selectmen and the stake presidency knew this information, and it had been entered as in testimony to the court. As Pendleton wrote, however, the censure of church authorities “reminds me of the truth of the old addage, ‘that drowning men will grasp at straws’ Let my faults be what they may. I know this much, that Pendleton never looked quietly on, and disregarded the sufferings of his fellow creatures, and ^trust^ I shall not be condemned from the hearing of the ear.”32 If Parowan residents thought that the murderous tale of Samuel Baker had ended, then they were in for another stunning turn of events. On January 24, 1856, Governor Brigham Young pardoned Samuel Baker. This occurred after a petition was signed by “a large number of persons, citizens of Iron County” who did not believe that Baker “either willfully, intentionally, or maliciously, did commit” the murder of Isaac Whitehouse.33 Not more than two months had passed from the day of Baker’s sentencing 30 Ibid. 31 Ibid. 32 Ibid. 33 Brigham Young Letterbook, February 26, 1855–August 19, 1856, p. 537–38, box 2, vol. 2, Brigham Young Office Files 1832–1878, CR 1234 1, CHL. The pardon is also found in Governor Brigham Young Letterbook, 1853–1858, p. 420–21, Series 13844, and Executive Proceedings, Book B, 1852–1871, p. 44, reel 2, box 1, Series 242, Secretary of State Executive Record Books, Utah State Archives and Records Service, Salt Lake City, Utah, (hereafter USARS).


According to historian Leonard Arrington, many petitions arrived at Governor Young’s office “mostly asking pardon for crimes or forgiveness of fines.” Occasionally, however, he issued pardons for murder convictions, “usually on the grounds of extreme youth and/or a conviction based on circumstantial evidence.”35 Further, at least according to Judge Drummond, the pardon of Samuel Baker was caught up in the ongoing conflict between Mormon and federal officials. Young’s influence on the rule of law in Utah Territory came under question during the period of increased government oversight by federal appointees chosen by President Buchanan. From mid-1854 to the early months of 1857, Supreme Court Associate Justices John P. Kinney, George P. Stiles, and William W. Drummond waged a letter-writing campaign to Washington D.C., wherein they condemned Mormon authorities for using Utah probate courts as a means of denying due process to people outside the faith. Drummond, in particular, began to challenge the church’s influence on governance by questioning the jurisdiction of the probate courts and accusing 34 Stout, On the Mormon Frontier, 2:566–568, 590. 35 Leonard J. Arrington, Brigham Young: American Moses (New York: Knopf, 1985), 239.

who had been tried and sentenced to ten years’ imprisonment in the penitentiary, for the murder of a dumb boy by the name of White House, the proof showing one of the most aggravated cases of murder that I ever knew being tried; and to insult the court and government officers, this man Young took this pardoned criminal with him, in proper person, to church on the next Sabbath after his conviction; Baker, in the meantime, having received a full pardon from Governor Brigham Young.37 36 See “From Utah,” Washington, D.C. Daily National Intelligencer, April 1, 1857; “Freaks of Popular Sovereignty in Utah—Is the Democracy a Unit?” National Era 11 (April 2, 1857): 54; “The Very Latest News,” San Francisco Daily Alta California, April 13, 1857; “Events of the Month. Domestic. The Mormons,” American Phrenological Journal 25 (May 1857): 112; “From the Mormon Country,” Washington, D.C. Daily National Intelligencer, June 6, 1857; Norman F. Furness, The Mormon Conflict: 1850–1859 (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1960), 54–58; and William P. MacKinnon, ed., At Sword’s Point, Part 1: A Documentary History of the Utah War to 1858 (Norman, OK: Arthur H. Clark, 2008), 472–74. 37 W. W. Drummond to Jeremiah S. Black, March 30, 1857, in James Buchanan, “The Utah Expedition,” House of Representatives, 35th Cong., 1st Sess., Exec. Doc. No. 71, p. 212–14, quote from 212. This letter was printed under “Affairs in Utah Territory,” Washington, D.C.

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By the end of March 1857, Surveyor General David H. Burr, Indian agents, and other federal authorities had fled the territory for fear of bodily harm by Mormon operatives. On March 30, 1857, Drummond sent Attorney General Jeremiah S. Black a resignation letter containing a list of indictments against Young and Mormon authorities. In addition to accusing Young of ordering the destruction of territorial supreme court files, Drummond leveled charges of treason against the governor for granting unwarranted pardons to Mormon convicts and incarcerating five or six non-Mormons for no crime but being outsiders. “I also charge Governor Young with constantly interfering with the federal courts,” he wrote. “The judiciary is only treated as a farce,” he further alleged, having done little good during his tenure as a judge in the territory. Drummond specifically named the Baker case, writing that Young had pardoned Samuel Baker,

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The pardoning of Samuel Baker for the abuse and murder of Isaac Whitehouse raises important questions about the prosecution of child abuse and domestic violence among Latter-day Saints in the frontier West. For example, what laws had been enacted for the protection of children against parental abuse? If members of the community had suspected the guardians of this orphaned boy of abuses prior to his murder, then why did they so willingly forgive Baker of such a crime? Even more troubling, does Whitehouse’s violent demise represent an underlying feeling in nineteenth-century frontier communities that disabled children were expendable? Perhaps what was inhumane cruelty to Martineau and a few other members of the community was considered a private family matter to a majority of others.

Young of treasonable acts as governor.36

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to when he was free to return home to Parowan. On Friday, January 25, Hosea Stout reported that “Mr Baker came to my house, rejoicing that his term of ten years had expired so soon.”34

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At nearly the same time, a correspondent for the San Francisco Herald paraphrased Drummond’s charges against Young and the egregious circumstances surrounding the pardoning of Baker. Adding his own embellishments, the correspondent wrote:

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The reason assigned for his pardon was, that he [Baker] was a Saint, and a d—d Gentile Judge should not have the pleasure of seeing one of the Saints of God put in prison for the murder of so useless a being as a dumb boy; that, if people were so unfortunate as to have children that could not speak, they were incapable of becoming Saints, and it was a blessing to kill them off, and save the parents the trouble of bringing them up; and that God required a human being to talk before he could pray.38 Such a charged statement only mixes fact with conjecture. While Young’s pardon might have been an “insult” to the court, it was probably more about keeping an able-bodied breadwinner at home to support his wife and family. Sending Samuel Baker to prison would have effectively rendered his wife, Elizabeth, an unmarriageable widow with four small children. Even worse, the confiscation of Samuel’s property in repayment of the PEF debt would have left Elizabeth completely ruined. The unanimous vote to excommunicate the Bakers went against the idea that neighboring citizens would forgive the uncle’s deadly abuse of the boy and petition for his pardon. The so-called petition of a “large number” of Iron County residents might have been concocted as a subterfuge—out of compassion for Elizabeth Baker— to keep the Baker family intact.39 Daily National Intelligencer, July 31, 1857, and “The Utah Problem,” San Francisco Daily Alta California, May 21, 1857, and reprinted in Leroy R. Hafen and Ann W. Hafen, eds., The Utah Expedition, 1857–1858: A Documentary Account of the United States Military Movement under Colonel Albert Sidney Johnston, and the Resistance by Brigham Young and the Mormon Nauvoo Legion (Glendale, CA: Arthur H. Clark, 1958), 363–66; and Mackinnon, ed., At Sword’s Point, 116–18. 38 “‘Popular Sovereignty’ in Utah: Destroying the Records of the United States Courts,” National Era 11 (April 2, 1857): 55. 39 A letter from Governor Young’s clerk to the sheriff of Iron County appears to support this theory. Attached

Parowan resident James Henry Martineau (1828–1923), photograph probably taken in his late forties. —

author’s collection

Samuel and Elizabeth Baker were presumably restored to full fellowship in the church and allowed to reclaim their lives in Parowan. It appears, however, that Samuel may have been predisposed to violence. Less than a year from the time of his pardon, James Martineau noted in the official Parowan stake history that “Samuel G. Baker was cut off from the church for cutting a cow with an ax so bad she had to be killed, and trying to lay it to Zachariah B. Decker, on the night of Dec. 12, 1856.”40 In a letter to to the pardon were two blank forms for him “or the other proper person to fill up, because the petition from citizens of Iron County do[e]s not contain the necessary information to enable me to execute the paper in form, full, as it should be.” Daniel Mackintosh to Sheriff of Iron County, January 9, 1856, Young Letterbook, 1853– 1858, p. 422, Series 13844, USARS. 40 Martineau, “James H. Martineau Record and Negotiations,” typescript, part B, December 14, 1856, p. 27, box 90, fd. 4, William Rees Palmer Collection, MS 1, Special Collections and Archives, Gerald R. Sherratt Library, Southern Utah University (hereafter SLSUU); the original MS is held in CHL, LR 6778 28.


According to Smith, Baker went to Bishop Tarlton Lewis the next morning and “confessed that he had done the deed.” It was believed by some that Baker cut the cow in hopes of getting the beef. When the bishop discovered at a priesthood council meeting that Baker belonged to the church, he decided, on motion, to cut him off. The vote was unanimous, with only one person “astride the fense” who did not know what Baker had done.43 Following this incident, several men shared what they knew of Baker’s past. Smith wrote that “Bro Tophane had known of him to steal wood” and “Bro Davenport had known of his taking the Indians corn in the Shock in the field.” Even more disturbing, “Bro Jacob West Said that on the plains as they were coming in Baker and another man crowded out a man and wife from the wagon they were all coming in when the woman was confined from the effects of which exposure both mother and child died 41 Jesse N. Smith to James H. Martineau, December 23, 1856, box 1, fd. 1, Martineau Collection. Quotations from this letter are published as they appear in the original, with no corrections or punctuation. Superscripted insertions appear between carets. Editorial additions appear between brackets. 42 Ibid. 43 Ibid.

44 Ibid. 45 David T. Courtright, Violent Land: Single Men and Social Disorder from the Frontier to the Inner City (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1996), 37–41, quote from 37. 46 Samuel Timmins, ed., The Resources, Products, and Industrial History of Birmingham and the Midland Hardware District (London: Robert Hardwicke, 1866), 443–44, quote from 444. See also William Hutton, The History of Birmingham, 6th ed. (Birmingham, England: James Guest, 1836), 171–73. 47 Baker was one of innumerable young men who came to the North American frontier to, in a sense, overtake and occupy the land—often by violent means—like a heroic hunter who sought to exploit or conquer nature. Violence on the American frontier under this premise has been examined as a subject of literary and historical mythology. See Richard Slotkin, Regeneration through Violence: The Mythology of the American Frontier, 1600– 1860 (Middletown, CT: Wesleyan University Press, 1973), and Reginald Dyck, “Frontier Violence in the Garden of America,” in Eric Heyne, ed., Desert, Garden, Margin, Range: Literature on the American Frontier (New York: Twayne, 1992), 55–69.

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Initially, Baker not only denied responsibility for cutting the cow, he also tried to place the blame on someone else. Moreover, his reputation for insolence had followed him from England. His treacherous, duplicitous behavior had allegedly caused the death of an immigrant mother and child, his wife Sarah, and (in this case) his orphaned nephew. While it is generally believed that, as David Courtright writes, “families constrain violent and disorderly male behavior,” Samuel Baker had exhibited aggression in this family and in a marital union prior to his arrival in Parowan.45 As a pearl worker, Baker was undoubtedly familiar with the tedium of factory work, since Birmingham was known for its jewelry and pearl button manufacturing. According to one writer, the daily burnishing, turning, and polishing processes were so mentally taxing and intensely physical that “a certain kind of sharpening of the wits goes on, more than exists in many other kinds of labor.”46 Though his wits might have been sharpened and maintained at work, Baker must have given vent to pent-up frustrations and anger at home with little cause. A move to a peaceable, forgiving Mormon community in the American West would have offered a clean slate and the possibility that an aggressive temperament would go unnoticed or unchecked.47

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Smith, who was then serving as second counselor in the Parowan Stake presidency, described the sequence of events to Martineau: “That evening Bro Pendleton the Bishop and counsel Bro Silas [Smith] and myself ^and some others^ met with the Second Quorum [of Elders] and after ascertaining that none of [them] knew anything about the matter prayer was offered that this iniquity in Israel might come to light.”42

also that Baker caused the death of his own wife. ^(Bakers)^”44

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Martineau, Jesse N. Smith wrote that the cow was so “horribly mangled,” that one of the hind legs was completely severed. The killing must have been ghastly, for not only had blood been spilled on the ground, but it was also splattered on the gate of the corral in which the cow was held. The mutilated cow was found in the street the next morning and, as described by Smith, “the sight was enough to chill the blood of the Stoutest heart.”41 For some unknown reason, it was done to implicate Decker.

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Regardless of the circumstances leading up to Whitehouse’s abuse and murder, Baker’s arrest, conviction, and pardon for the boy’s death evidently did not scare him into reform. The cow mutilation signaled the end of his short and disgraceful period of residence in Parowan. His act of brutality and the consequential second excommunication effectively banished him and his wife from the community. Samuel Baker was listed in the 1856 Utah Census as a resident of Cedar City, suggesting that the Bakers sought to flee the confines of the fort wall. The order of the census enumeration also suggests that Isaac’s five-year-old brother was placed under the care of Joseph and Nancy Barton of Parowan.48 Although we do not know precisely when they decided to move, Samuel and Elizabeth soon took their children away to live in anonymity in San Bernardino, California (where many Iron County residents out-migrated) and to avoid the possibility of awkward stares from neighboring members of the Parowan and Cedar City settlements.49 The Bakers’ move to California helped to stifle any public memory of the incident. Whitehouse’s murder was never reported in the Deseret News or any other published records. With the exception of Martineau’s explicit journal entry, only a few extant diaries mention the murder and court case and then only obscurely. As a consequence, the tragic affair was never recounted in histories of Parowan or Iron County. One account, written decades after the incident by a Baker descendant, 48 See 1856 Utah Census Returns, “Cedar City, Iron County, Utah,” p. 19, col. A, line 1, and “Parowan City, Iron County,” p. 1, col. B, lines 13–15, film no. 0505913, FHL. Though many researchers consider the 1856 Utah census to be unreliable because it often duplicated individuals or incorrectly showed them as residing in Utah, the census may have accurately documented the location of Samuel Baker and Joseph Whitehouse. 49 Samuel G. Baker, his wife Elizabeth, and children (John, Joseph, Harriet, and Edwin) were listed as residents of the San Bernardino Valley as early as 1860. According to the 1860 California census, Edwin (age ten) was born in England and John Samuel (age four) was born in Utah, while Joseph (age two) and Harriet (age one) were born in California. Hence, the narrative of this article does not mention these two youngest children. The reason for Franklin’s absence is unknown. See Eighth Census, California, p. 33, San Bernardino, San Salvador township, household 243.

falsely tells a story of the Baker family passing through Utah, with no mention of their stay in Parowan or the boy’s death and the subsequent murder trial: “Before reaching Salt Lake City, the Whitehouse baby [Isaac] died. One of the Baker boys and Joe Whitehouse were left with some people in Salt Lake City while S. G. Baker and wife and the other Baker boy came on to San Bernardino, Calif. with the Mormons. Later the two boys were sent on to them in another wagon train.”50 By the mid-twentieth century, when this account was written, the episode had been effectively washed from collective memory. The absence of reports of Baker’s crimes and the trial in contemporary newspapers seems to indicate that such violent abuses against children— and undoubtedly spouses—were taboo and kept from public knowledge. According to the historian Elliott West, “Violence and child abuse usually remained behind closed doors, but enough is mentioned in reminiscences and memoirs to show that it was certainly not unknown.”51 The stresses of frontier life, family transience, marital discord, the death of a parent, and the abandonment of children to strangers or uncompassionate caretakers often led to child neglect and abuse.52 Contemporary research has revealed some of the causal factors leading to the maltreatment of children with disabilities. Studies have shown that “children with chronic illnesses or disabilities often place higher emotional, physical, economic, and social demands on their families.”53 Newly arriving immigrants to Parowan encountered a rough and tumble existence and brought with them the social behaviors that they had adopted in industrialized cities like Birmingham, London, and Liverpool. Moreover, as clinical psychologists conclude, “Parents with limited social and community support may be at especially high risk of maltreating children with disabilities, because 50 “From a Journal of Alma Eliot Russell.” 51 Elliott West, Growing Up with the Country: Childhood on the Far Western Frontier (Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 1989), 152–53, 203–204, quote from 152. 52 Ibid., 152–53. 53 Roberta A. Hibbard, Larry W. Desch, et al., “Maltreatment of Children with Disabilities,” Pediatrics 119 (May 2007): 1018–25, quote from 1020.


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If citizens of the young settlement of Parowan had acted upon the abuse and maltreatment of Whitehouse, then perhaps they would have placed the boy in another home or in an institution, where he would have received better attention than he did under his guardians. Salt Lake City was best prepared to have an institution for children, but an “Orphan’s Home and Day Nursery” was not established in the city until 1886.55 Larger towns and cities in the antebellum East often had facilities for people 54 Ibid. 55 “The Orphan’s Home Benefit,” Salt Lake Daily Herald, May 16, 1886; “The Orphan’s Home,” Salt Lake Evening Democrat, August 14, 1886; “Memorial to Congress. Orphan’s Home,” Laws of the Territory of Utah, Passed at the Twenty-Eighth Session of the Legislative Assembly (Salt Lake City: Tribune Printing, 1888), 222. An act for the establishment of an “Institution of the Deaf Mutes” was passed at this session, but the purpose of the institution was to educate them. See idem, 77–78.

Parowan Fort in 1852, by William Warner Major. —

courtesy of the lds church history museum, copyright by intellectual reserve, inc.

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they feel more overwhelmed and unable to cope with the care and supervision responsibilities that are required.”54 These factors were particularly profound for the Bakers. The severely depressed conditions in Parowan would have exacerbated the tremendous demands placed on the blended Baker family. The day-to-day care of Isaac, the mute boy who was neither Elizabeth’s nor Samuel’s biological child, would have been extremely taxing on them.

283 with disabilities, though the care given in orphanages, almshouses, and mental hospitals often left much to be desired.56 Although Whitehouse had extended family with whom he could (and should) have been adequately cared for, the harsh economic conditions in Parowan only intensified the pressures on his guardians— creating a “simmering pot” ready to boil over on a defenseless, disabled boy. The idealism of church membership presupposed a closeness of the family unit, a family that adhered to Christian principles of compassion and care. Within the confines of Parowan’s fort wall, however, Samuel and Elizabeth must have felt that they could keep the abuse of the boy hidden and behind closed doors. Territorial newspapers did not report violent treatment of children prior to about 1870. Utah newspapers were careful not to risk libel in reporting allegations of child abuse. For 56 David J. Rothman, Discovery of the Asylum: Social Order and Disorder in the New Republic, rev. ed. (1971; repr., Piscataway, NJ: Aldine Transaction, 2009), esp. 154– 204.


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example, in a landmark case decided in 1896, Tooele rancher Amos Fenstermaker sued the Salt Lake Tribune for libel after the newspaper alleged that Fenstermaker and members of his family had cruelly treated a thirteen-year-old girl who lived with them as an adopted child and had turned her out into the desert to die. The jury in the lower court found in favor of the defendant, after which the plaintiff appealed to the Utah Supreme Court. The court reversed the ruling of the lower court and ordered a new trial. Judge Powers, the attorney for the Salt Lake Tribune, petitioned for a rehearing of the case. Ultimately, the court ruled, in part, that “a newspaper article which relates wholly to the private acts of a family, with respect to cruel treatment of a child, is not a privileged publication, though made in good faith as a matter of news in which the public may have much interest.”57 Except for a high-profile case of abuse in December 1879 in which a father cruelly assaulted and beat his four-year-old son, incidents of physical abuse went virtually unreported in nineteenth-century Utah newspapers. The father in this case, Charles W. Morris, was charged and acquitted of simple assault. Two and a half months later, when Morris was charged with attempted murder, he was acquitted on a technicality in the law. Because he had been previously tried and acquitted for the charge of assault by the police magistrate, the former trial was a bar to further prosecution for the same crime on the greater charge.58 57 Festermaker v. Tribune Publishing Co., 12 U. 439; 13 U. 532; 43 P. R. 112; 45 P. R. 1097; State of Utah, Revised Statutes (January 1, 1898) Title 38, Section 1348, p. 358–59. See also “The Fenstermaker Suit,” Salt Lake Herald, November 29, 1894; “The Fenstermaker Family,” Salt Lake Tribune, December 1, 1894; “Was Fond of Children,” Salt Lake Herald, December 2, 1894; “The Fenstermaker Waif,” Deseret Evening News, December 6, 1894; “A Just Verdict,” Salt Lake Herald, December 6, 1894; “Fenstermaker Case Again,” Salt Lake Tribune, June 6, 1895; “Fenstermaker Gets a New Trial,” Salt Lake Herald, December 22, 1895; “Supreme Court,” Salt Lake Herald, February 20, 1896; “Fenstermaker Decision,” Salt Lake Tribune, April 7, 1896; “State Supreme Court,” Salt Lake Herald, July 7, 1896; “Fenstermaker Girl ReArrested,” Deseret Evening News, January 16, 1897; “Carrie Fenstermaker’s Arrest,” Salt Lake Tribune, January 8, 1897. 58 “The Child-Beating Affair,” Salt Lake Herald, November 16, 1879; “That Child Abuser,” Salt Lake Tribune, December 27, 1879; “Third District Court,” Salt Lake Tribune, February 3, 1880; “Local and Other Matters,” Deseret News, February 4, 1880; “Morris’ Trial,” Salt

The public outrage over the abuses the boy suffered and the father’s subsequent acquittal became the impetus for publicizing extreme cases of brutality and sexual assaults on children thereafter, but it did very little for increasing vigilance in protecting children generally. Utahns applauded the labors of humanitarian societies and social reform groups in eastern cities for “accomplishing much for the protection of children from brutal parents and taskmasters,” but their efforts were seen as unnecessary in the prosecution of child abuse in Utah. “If anything of the kind existed in Utah,” reported the Deseret News, “it would be pointed out at once as an ‘outgrowth of Mormonism, a natural result of polygamic life.’” It was believed that these social reformers could find a sufficient number of important and perplexing issues within their own realm of influence in New York and other larger cities, “without troubling themselves with Utah, where such sorrows as afflict the poor of ‘Christian’ cities are unknown, and where there is no need for societies to protect little children from cruelty and oppression.”59 Although the mistreatment of children could hide behind a mask of religious idealism, it was no less a problem in Utah than it was a national one.60 Not until the coming of child protection Lake Tribune, February 27, 1880; “A Child Beater,” Deseret News, March 3, 1880; “City Jottings,” Salt Lake Tribune, March 4, 10, 1880; “The Child Abuser,” Salt Lake Tribune, March 9, 10, 1880; “The Torturer Free,” Salt Lake Tribune, March 11, 1880; “Morris Acquitted,” Deseret News, March 17, 1880. The earliest published reports of child assault include “Nephi, Dec. 5,” Deseret News, December 7, 1870, 516; “A Human Brute,” Deseret News, September 8, 1875, 508; “An Attempted Rape,” Salt Lake Tribune, June 3, 1876; “Rape. The Foul Ravisher of 12-year-old Girl Arrested,” Ogden Daily Herald, March 14, 1883. 59 “Cruelty to Children,” Deseret News, April 25, 1883. This viewpoint was reiterated six years later. See “Parental Cruelty,” Deseret Weekly, March 23, 1889, 398. 60 For more on the abuse of children in the nineteenth century, see Lloyd de Mause, “The History of Child Assault,” The Journal of Psychohistory 18 (1990): 1–29; Robert W. Ten Bensel, Marguerite M. Rheinberger, and Samuel X. Radbill, “Children in a World of Violence: The Roots of Child Maltreatment,” in The Battered Child, ed. Mary Edna Helfer, Ruth S. Kempe, and Richard D. Krugman, 5th ed. (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1997), 3–28; Lester Alston, “Children as Chattel,” in Small Worlds: Children and Adolescents in America, 1850–1950, ed. Elliott West and Paula Petrik (Lawrence: University Press of Kansas, 1992), 208–231; Lloyd de Mause, “The History of Child Abuse,” Journal of Psychohistory 25 (Winter 1998): 216–36; Barbara


Finkelstein, “A Crucible of Contradictions: Historical Roots of Violence against Children in the United States,” History of Education Quarterly 40 (Spring 2000): 1–21. 61 See, for example, “Humane Society’s Work,” Salt Lake Tribune, September 20, 1900; “For Humane Causes,” Salt Lake Herald, September 20, 1900; “Local Briefs,” Deseret Evening News, August 5 and September 9, 1901. For more on the joining of child protection laws with animal rights laws, see Susan J. Pearson, The Rights of the Defenseless: Protecting Animals and Children in Gilded Age America (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2011). 62 Ivan, “Church and State,” Deseret Weekly, January 16, 1892, 101; “Runaway Salt Lake Boys,” Deseret Evening News, February 14, 1898; “Children’s Aid Society Work,” Deseret Evening News, November 15, 1904; “Children’s Aid and Home Finding Association,” Salt Lake Tribune, February 21, 1904; Scipio A. Kenner, Utah as It Is (Salt Lake City: Deseret News, 1904), 357–58, 523–25. 63 “Children’s Aid Society of Ogden,” Ogden Standard, March 16, 1910; “New Incorporations,” Salt Lake Tribune, April 23, 1910; “Incorporations,” Salt Lake HeraldRepublican, April 23, 1910; Colleen R. Burnham, The Children’s Aid Society of Utah: A Brief History, 1910–1995: 85 Years of Caring (Ogden, UT: Children’s Aid Society of Utah, 1996), 6. For more on the CAS and the NYSPCC, see LeRoy Ashby, Endangered Children: Dependency, Neglect, and Abuse in American History (New York: Twayne, 1997), 35–54, and 59–67, and Marshall Spatz, “Child Abuse in the Nineteenth Century,” New York Affairs 4, no. 2 (1977): 80–90.

64 Burnham, Children’s Aid Society, 6–9. For a history of the orphan trains, see Miriam Z. Langsam, Children West: A History of the Placing Out System of the New York Children’s Aid Society, 1853–1890 (Madison: State Historical Society of Wisconsin, 1964), and Stephen O’Connor, Orphan Trains: The Story of Charles Loring Brace and the Children He Saved and Failed (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2001). 65 Cases of assault and cruelty to children are found in the criminal case files and minute books of the various territorial district courts in Utah, preserved at the USARS. For more on the maltreatment and abuse of children in Utah, see Martha Sonntag Bradley, “Protect the Children: Child Labor in Utah, 1880–1920,” Utah Historical Quarterly 59 (1991): 52–71, and Doug Miller, “The History of Child Sexual Abuse in Utah, 1870–1910” (paper, Utah State History Conference, Salt Lake City, UT, September 12, 2008). On growing up in frontier Utah, see Davis Bitton, “Zion’s Rowdies: Growing Up on the Mormon Frontier,” Utah Historical Quarterly 50 (Spring 1982): 182–195, revised and republished in The Ritualization of Mormon History and Other Essays (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1994), 54–68; Susan Arrington Madsen, “Growing Up in Pioneer Utah: Agonies and Ecstasies,” in Nearly Everything Imaginable, ed. by Ronald W. Walker and Doris R. Dant (Provo, UT: Brigham Young University Press, 1999), 316–28; Elliott West, “Becoming Mormon,” Journal of Mormon History 28 (Spring 2002): 31–51. 66 Territory of Utah, Compiled Laws (1876), Title IX, Chap. 1, Sec. 1964, and Title XX, Sec. 1236; “Utah Laws against Sexual Crimes,” Deseret News Weekly, March 1, 1882, 88; “The Crime of Incest,” Salt Lake Daily Tribune, March 2, 1887; “An Act Regulating Marriage,” Ogden Standard, March 20, 1888; “Utah’s Marriage Law,” Salt Lake Daily Herald, April 29, 1888.

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In Utah, the efforts of benevolent societies to abrogate the maltreatment of children failed to yield results until the end of the nineteenth century, when those organizations began lobbying state representatives to criminalize abuses against children as much as they had done for cruelty to animals. For example, Utah’s 1876 penal code and form of civil actions, which was adapwted from California’s Code of Laws, imposed criminal penalties for sexual crimes, or the “carnal abuse of children,” and afforded a parent “an action for the injury or death of a child,” but did nothing specific for death or injuries caused by the abusive acts of parents or guardians.66

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City chapter of the Utah Humane Society and advised it to enlarge its scope by including a humane interest in neglected children. “This state so far had not enacted any special law applicable to their case,” he reminded them, “but the society should see the legislative nominees and obtain pledges from them before the election that if elected they would use their influence for the enactment of laws for the protection of children.”61 Likewise, state chapters of progressive reform organizations—such as the New York Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NYSPCC), founded in 1874 by Elbridge Gerry, and the American Home-Finding Association—did not arrive in Utah until the turn of the century.62 The Utah chapter of the Children’s Aid Society (CAS), founded in 1853 by Charles Loring Brace, was incorporated in Ogden in 1910 by Mary J. Gosling.63 These benevolent organizations primarily functioned as intercessors, pleading the cause of

neglected, orphaned, or abandoned children and placing them in foster homes, as did Brace when he started the orphan train movement of the mid-nineteenth century.64 Their advocacy led to vagrancy reforms and child protection laws in 1905, but only after decades of unpublicized child assault cases in Utah’s district courts.65

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laws did violence and other abuses of children receive the attention that they deserved. In September 1900, Professor R. J. O’Hanion of Milwaukee, a representative of the American Humane Society, spoke to the Salt Lake

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Issues of maltreatment began to receive attention after several decades of advocacy by lobbyists, women’s groups, and humane societies to end child incest and illegitimacy in polygamous households. After Utah achieved statehood in 1896, the legislature passed the first child protection laws to impose limits on the length of work time for children, labor conditions, truancy, and the ages of consent for boys and girls.67 During the early decades of the twentieth century, successive legislative acts sought to criminalize physical and sexual violence against children, as well as to regulate child labor. On March 23, 1903, the Utah Legislature passed, along with the authorization and definition of terms for a children’s aid society, the first act to formally penalize any adult-aged person or custodian who failed to support and adequately care for minor children; it was the first to include specific verbiage intended to prosecute 67 “A Horrible Crime,” Provo Utah Inquirer, May 24, 1889; “Polygamous Children,” Deseret Evening News, July 29, 1890; “Polygamous Children,” Deseret Evening News, January 27, 1891; “Held for Incest,” Provo Dispatch, July 4, 1891; “Age of Consent,” Provo Daily Enquirer, February 6, 1896; “Fixed the Age of Consent,” Salt Lake Tribune, January 24, 1896.

A group of children at St. Ann Orphanage, December 1909. Formal aid for children—in the form of institutions and laws, for instance— came about slowly in Utah. —

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the physical abuses of a child. Amendments to the Utah penal code soon followed, imposing more severe criminal penalties for abusive acts on children.68 68 “For Humane Causes,” Salt Lake Herald, September 20, 1900; “Abuse of Children,” State of Utah, Compiled Laws (1903), Chap. 124, Sec. 8, p. 174; “National Outlook for Children,” Salt Lake Tribune, July 14, 1905; “Child Labor,” Deseret Evening News, December 5, 1905; “Laws in Aid of Juvenile Work,” Salt Lake City Inter-Mountain Republican, January 13, 1907; State of Utah, Compiled Laws (1907), Chap. 10, 720x29, p. 369; “Club Women Ask for New Laws,” Salt Lake Herald, October 24, 1907; “Carnality Leads to Incest,” Salt Lake Tribune, August 29, 1910; State of Utah, Compiled Laws (1911), Secs. 2911, 2912; State v. Bess, 44 U. 39; 137 P.R. 829; State of Utah, Compiled Laws (1917), Section 1840. For the enactment of Utah child labor laws, see Bradley, “Protect the Children,” 212–14.


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Regrettably, these laws were too little and much too late for countless Utah children, such as Isaac Whitehouse, who suffered at the hands of an abusive parent or guardian. Their cries fall silent, as did Isaac’s, as the sordid details of their abuse remain undisclosed in the records that preserve the existence of the crimes. Whitehouse’s bruised and battered body was laid to rest in an unmarked grave, immediately adjacent to and at the foot of Parowan’s beloved stake president, John Calvin Lazelle Smith. The sexton’s record failed to list the boy’s age and the cause of his death.69 We may never know the whole story behind the senseless murder of this child forgotten after more than one hundred and fifty years. The tragic sequence of events appears to have avoided the detection of local historians and storytellers. As the years pass, the unspeakable events surrounding Isaac Whitehouse’s death seem to sink deeper into the soil beneath the sod of the Parowan City cemetery and into oblivion.

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Noel A. Carmack is an assistant professor of art at USU Eastern in Price, Utah. He has published on the art, culture, and labor of nineteenth-century Mormonism, including his award-winning article on James Henry Martineau, which UHQ published in 2000. This article is a revised and expanded version of a paper he delivered at the Fifty-Seventh Annual Utah State History Conference on September 12, 2008.

— 69 Parowan City Cemetery, Block A, Lot 8, Grave 1. See Parowan Cemetery Internment Record, 1852–1929, microfilm, p. 13, Series 23643, roll 2721, SLSUU; the cemetery record is also available as a typescript by Lola Ann Johnson Jones, copy held at the Old Rock Church, Parowan, Utah.

WEB EXTRA Visit history.utah.gov/whitehouse-murder for a dialogue between the authors of articles published in Utah Historical Quarterly and Journal of Mormon History about the Whitehouse case.


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U.S. Geological Survey, Map of Utah Territory Representing the Extent of the Irrigable, Timber and Pasture Lands (1878), detail. —

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Israel Bennion and a Conflict in Vernon, 1893–1896 BY

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Water law on the eve of statehood B E N N I O N

The life of Israel Bennion, a second-generation Utah Mormon, was shaped by his desire to establish a Zion community in an arid land.1 His journals from 1893 to 1896 describe his efforts to resolve a local conflict over water—a type of conflict common where water is precious and streamflows vary during the year—in Vernon, a Mormon village at the south end of Rush Valley in Utah Territory. Bennion believed water ought to be administered according to the pattern established by the first settlers—through church and community channels, with water theoretically distributed according to the needs of all users. Others in Vernon chafed at communal administration and subscribed to a government-based system of prior appropriation, where water could be bought and sold as if it were private property. This practice became codified into law when Utah became a state. The squabble in Vernon illuminates two ideological positions as Utah shifted from communal to capitalistic management of water. Several trends combined to create conflicts in Mormon villages in Utah in the 1890s: economic development required stable and permanent sources of water that could be transported to where industries needed it; new settlers, which by now included non-Mormons, hoped to gain water rights not mediated by LDS church authorities; and many residents of Utah Territory sought to become a part of the economic fabric of the United States. Even as the former attitudes toward water eroded, replaced gradually by new beliefs that were manifested in water code, Bennion 1 For Mormons, Zion was both a physical location and a state of righteous community. In his revelations, Joseph Smith designated Missouri as the place of Zion, but the term also came to mean Mormon settlements in the Great Basin, including Bennion’s home village of Vernon.

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and many other Mormon water users subverted the new laws because they continued to believe in a community approach to water distribution.

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As Vernon and other Mormon communities worked through these transitions in the cultural and legal landscape, they had to make decisions concerning what M. Catherine Miller refers to as a core attribute of water law: management of the tension between the rights of individuals and of the community to water access. According to Miller, people who value community more than individual rights resolve conflict differently than those who value individual freedom more than solidarity with their neighbors. The law is perceived either as an instrument of the majority or of the “weak” for protection against the “powerful.”2 Those engaged in the conflicts over water in Vernon viewed law in both these ways, as a means of maintaining communal or majority control and as a means for protecting individual rights. Water scarcity in the community exacerbated the tension between these two perspectives. John Wesley Powell was among the first to predict problems concerning water use in the arid West. At the beginning of Powell’s career, contemporary thought postulated that rain would follow the plow, that the West had the potential to join the Midwest as America’s Garden of the World, and that the Great American Desert would sustain millions of people in fulfillment of manifest destiny.3 Instead of relying on entrenched fantasy, Powell measured water and rainfall, mapped the land, and observed the practices of the West’s residents. He determined that “the extent of irrigable land is dependent upon the volume of water carried by the streams.”4 He estimated that in Utah Terri2 M. Catherine Miller, Flooding the Courtrooms: Law and Water in the Far West (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1993), 39–40. 3 Wallace Stegner, Beyond the Hundredth Meridian: John Wesley Powell and the Second Opening of the West (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1954), 1–8. 4 John Wesley Powell, Report on the Lands of the Arid Region of the United States: With a More Detailed Account of the Lands of Utah, ed. Wallace Stegner (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1962), 17. Powell also made some significant observations concerning development and management of water in the West, which would have simplified water law and practice if they had been observed when Utah became a state. He wrote that common water law, which required water to

tory only 2.8 percent of the total area could be cultivated through using the water available in streams to irrigate it.5 He knew the West was unique, and he sought to set this region on the path of developing land and water to facilitate human habitation. However, Powell’s ideas did not always influence practice. Wallace Stegner writes that “western history is a series of lessons in consequences,” primarily that of farmers “trying to impose on a dry country the habits that have been formed in a wet one.”6 This was certainly true of the people of Vernon. There and elsewhere in Utah Territory, adaptation to a land of insufficient rainfall occurred in a tangled context: the web of traditional law designed for wetter landscapes, a patchwork political system, an atmosphere of tension among political parties and factions and between public and private interest, and the “stubborn and incredibly long-lived forces of tradition, inertia, folklore, ignorance, and regional dependency.”7 As these forces played out over the decades, they have resulted in massive dam and water delivery systems throughout the West. The historian Donald Worster described the arid West as a “hydraulic society,” implying that westerners have been overly dependent on developed water.8 Still the predominant view is that large-scale water development was necessary. As political scientist Daniel McCool writes, westerners are subject to “hydrological deterbe returned to the channel after use, would not work for mining and irrigation. After studying the practices of the Mormons, who had been farming in the area for thirty years, Powell suggested that development of water would require cooperation to build the necessary superstructure of canals, dams, and reservoirs that irrigation required. For this reason he recommended that groups of people gather by common consent and form irrigation districts that had to be recognized by the federal land surveys, thus locating much decision making on the local level but within the context of general laws that would prohibit monopoly by wealthy interests. He said that a water right must be connected to ownership of land, because if the two are separated, speculators with capital could gain ownership of the water and render the land useless. 5 Ibid., 19. 6 Stegner, “Introduction,” in Powell, Report on the Lands, xiv. Powell predicted that Vernon Creek could irrigate 1,200 acres. Powell, Report on the Lands, 125, 140. 7 Stegner, “Introduction,” in Powell, Report on the Lands, xii. 8 Miller, Flooding the Courtrooms, 5.


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Detail of the 1878 Map of Utah Territory, with shaded areas in the valleys representing irrigable lands. Vernon is located at the bottom left-hand corner of the map at the south end of Rush Valley. —

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minism.”9 The people of Vernon, a town founded at the convergence of several creeks that flow from the sickle-shaped Sheeprock Range, believed that their destinies depended on the development of water. For them, like other settlers in the West, water had a mythic power that enabled, distorted, and amplified the ways they viewed it and the land it flowed— or did not flow—across.10 Despite the Mormon tradition of responding to difficulties communally, the scarcity of water eventually caused conflicts in Vernon 9 Daniel C. McCool, Waters of Zion: The Politics of Water in Utah (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 1995), 3. 10 Ibid, 3.

and among many of the settlers of Utah Territory, and they would need recourse to law and mediation to resolve those conflicts. For the historian Donald J. Pisani, the development of water law in the West reflected the transition from local agriculture to mining, commercial agriculture, and other industries as the primary means of economic activity and from viewing water as available to all the members of a community to seeing it as transportable property, using prior appropriation as a guide to rights.11 11 Donald Pisani, To Reclaim a Divided West: Water, Law, and Public Policy, 1848–1902 (Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 1992). According to Gordon Morris Bakken, the first historians of water law in the West based their analyses on Frederick Jackson Turner’s 1893 thesis that the frontier had absolute effect; rather than relying on precedent, settlers codified

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For the people of vernon, water had a mythic power that enabled, distorted, and amplified the ways they viewed it and the land it flowed—or did not flow—across. Mining camps, often located far from a water source, required fixed and secure water rights— what John Leshy refers to as a “harsher and sharper-edged set of principles” than riparian water law.12 According to Pisani, for both agriculture and mining in the West “the chronological priority of a use transcended the value of a use” and “rights to water were exclusive and absolute.”13 This was distinct from the riparian water system, which depended on the direct proximity of the land to a stream of water. Westerners considered owning and consolidating water to be necessary for water law based on their frontier experiences. “Turner and the Law: Historiography,” The Development of Law on the Rocky Mountain Frontier: Civil Law and Society, 1850–1912 (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1983), 9–20. This kind of thinking by historians and water users has led to viewing current practice as inevitable and not based on enduring human tradition. However, most contemporary historians see the creation of water law in the West as dynamic and dependent on a network of causes. See Bakken, Development of Law, 3, 7; Miller, Flooding the Courtrooms, 5; McCool, Waters of Zion, 4; and Kurt Vedder, “Water Development in Salt Lake Valley: 1847–1985,” in McCool, Waters of Zion, 28–52. 12 John Leshy, “Prior Appropriation Doctrine of Water Law in the West: An Emperor with Few Clothes,” Journal of the West 29, no. 3 (1990), 5–7. 13 Donald Pisani, Water, Land, and Law in the West: The Limits of Public Policy, 1850–1920 (Lawrence: University of Kansas Press, 1996), 23.

economic development. The problem with prior appropriation was that it did not recognize public interest in how water was used and that it was not correlative to other users other than by right of priority.14 In Mormon Country, Stegner claims that Mormons settled and made decisions in unified groups, which was quite different from the way most of the West was colonized. “The American Dream as historians define it did not fit these whiskered zealots,” Stegner writes. “Theirs was a group dream, not an individual one; a dream of Millennium, not of quick fortune.”15 Mormons valued the concept of Zion, a community where all the righteous could dwell in peace. Brigham Young taught his people to bind themselves to other members of their community socially, economically, and spiritually.16 They manifested their idea in practical ways, by building towns patterned after the Heavenly City, where cooperation was more important than individualism.17 Consequently Mormons did not think of water rights the way most western immigrants did; for them, water was not viewed as property. Young’s 1848 pronouncement prohibiting “private ownership of the streams that come out of the canyons” echoed the English common law view that “rivers were part of God’s plan as revealed in nature.”18 14 Ibid., 2. 15 Wallace Stegner, Mormon Country (Lincoln: Bison Book, 1981), 63. 16 Ibid., 25. The Doctrine and Covenants and the Pearl of Great Price, Mormon scriptures, have much to say about that kind of community: “They that remain, and are pure in heart, shall return, and come to their inheritances, they and their children, with songs of everlasting joy, to build up the waste places of Zion” (Doctrine and Covenants 101:18), and “The Lord called his people Zion, because they were of one heart and one mind” (Moses 7:18–19). 17 Stegner, Mormon Country, 28. 18 Pisani, To Reclaim a Divided West, 48; Pisani, Water, Land, Law in the West, 9. He records that William Blackstone described water as “a moving wandering thing,” not easily made into property. According to Gordon Bakken, Mormons created a tradition that combined distributive administration and individual appropriation. Whether this method of management was authoritarian or communal depends on the historian: Bakken suggests management was hierarchical. The Development of Law on the Rocky Mountain Frontier, 32, 36. Thomas O’Dea wrote that water management followed “the general outlines of their economic ethic of co-operation and their strong conception of the public aspects of property.” The Mormons (Chicago: University


of Chicago Press, 1957), 202. Thomas Alexander wrote that before 1852 administration was through common consent. “Interdependence and Change: Mutual Irrigation Companies in Utah’s Wasatch Oasis in an Age of Modernization, 1870–1930,” Utah Historical Quarterly 71, no. 4 (Fall 2003): 293. This conflict of interpretation among historians reflects the people they studied, who lived inside the tension between authority and individual right. 19 Wells A. Hutchins, The Utah Law of Water Rights, State Engineer of Utah and Natural Resource Economics Division, Economic Research Service, USDA, 1965, 8. See also Hutchins, Water Rights Laws in the Nineteen Western States: Volume I, Miscellaneous Publication No. 1206, Natural Resource Economics Division, Economic Research Service, USDA, 285. 20 Leonard J. Arrington, Great Basin Kingdom: An Economic History of the Latter-day Saints, 1830–1900 (Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 2005), 53. See also George Thomas, The Development of Institutions under Irrigation (New York: MacMillan, 1920), 19–20. 21 Arrington, Great Basin Kingdom, 53; O’Dea, Mormons, 201. 22 O’Dea, Mormons, 201–202; Arrington, Great Basin Kingdom, 53. 23 Thomas, Development of Institutions; Hutchings, Utah Law of Water Rights, 12. 24 Thomas, Development of Institutions, 27.

25 Pisani, To Reclaim a Divided West, 47. 26 O’Dea, Mormons, 203; Hutchins, Water Rights Laws, 285–86; Thomas, Development of Institutions, 44–45. Thomas G. Alexander, Utah, the Right Place (Salt Lake City: Gibbs Smith, 2003), 222. 27 Pisani, To Reclaim a Divided West, 48. 28 Arrington, Great Basin Kingdom, 53; O’Dea, Mormons, 203; Thomas, Development of Institutions, 117; Alexander, Utah, The Right Place, 222. 29 Pisani, Water, Land, Law in the West, 12. 30 As might be expected, historians have interpreted differently the practice of managing water conflicts through the Mormon-controlled probate courts. Bakken writes that keeping power in these courts prevented decisions from being made by the non-Mormon Supreme Court and that giving authority to irrigation companies made sure that the Mormon majority would have power over water: Bakken, Development of Law, 36–38. But Thomas praises this system of management because it focused on community welfare without

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In 1865 the territorial legislature formally authorized communities to organize irrigation districts.28 Member landholders still had the same communally managed rights to the water. The LDS church continued to supply the money and manpower needed for irrigation projects. From 1865 to statehood, the federal government had limited but gradually expanding involvement in Utah water law and practice. Even though the 1877 Desert Land Act declared that “bona-fide prior appropriation” was the standard for water rights, this system was not often followed in Utah.29 Mormons and federal officials mistrusted each other. Mormons protected their resources from non-Mormons immigrating into the state. Non-Mormons, meanwhile, had to deal with exclusivist Mormon communities in their efforts to gain access to land and water.30

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Young and other leaders encouraged agricultural production and warned against mining and outside, non-Mormon funding of industry.25 Continuing that tradition, the territorial legislature passed an 1852 law codifying the tradition that water rights would remain tied to land. The legislature assigned county courts to control water privileges, though the Mormon church largely continued to manage and control water development in the territory, claiming to do so in the interest of communities.26 A Mormon bishop—or someone appointed by him— generally settled arguments over water. If this arbitration failed to solve the problem, bishop or high council courts levied judgments.27

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The provisional State of Deseret’s first legislation sustained this communal approach to water: individuals did not have the right to appropriate water, and the church granted the use of water to communities, leaders, and public officials to administer to others.19 Leonard Arrington writes that “dams and ditches were constructed on a community basis, rights to use the water were associated with the utilization of land, and a public authority was appointed to supervise the appropriation of water for culinary, industrial, and agricultural purposes.”20 Settlers assigned water masters and worked together to build irrigation systems.21 Church organization and water associations were not distinct. Users earned proportions of water by their labor and kept the right through continued “beneficial use.”22 George Thomas finds that economic cooperation during this preterritorial period kept settlers from acquiring more land and water than they could practically use.23 Working together also made development possible, because farmers were too poor to construct an irrigation superstructure without community support. This cooperative venture constituted “one of the greatest and most successful community or cooperative undertakings in the history of America.”24

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This vista of the southern end of Rush Valley shows the expanse of arid ground that the streams of water from Main, Bennion, and Harker Canyons had to cross to get to Vernon. —

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In 1880, the Utah Supreme Court declared in Monroe v. Ivie that the power of irrigation companies had become too strong and that water and land ought to be freely accessible for appropriation by all, whether Mormon or non-Mormon.31 That year the Utah legislature ignoring individual rights. It was, he argues, a simple, efficient, inexpensive system managed by county officials familiar with the problems that water users faced. Thomas, Development of Institutions, 91. 31 Bakken believes this declaration was the primary force behind the Irrigation Act of 1880, but that in passing this body of laws the Mormon legislature only gave lip service to individual appropriation. The new laws simply transferred power from the probate courts to county water commissions and kept much of the previous communitarian and exclusionist system intact. Bakken, Development of Law, 36, 38. Thomas argued that the 1880 law was possibly created due to fear of the federal government soon controlling the county courts, but he said that the changes were significant and disastrous—a “marked step in retrogression”—primarily because it declared that once water was appropriated it became private property. Thomas, Development of Institutions, 53–54, 56.

passed an act repealing the 1852 statute and creating “vested and accrued” primary (average stream) and secondary (spring floodwaters) water rights.32 Secondary claims were honored only when sufficient water existed to serve all primary rights, such as in early spring.33 The new law was confusing for communities as they tried to interpret it. While recognizing established rights, it did not provide legal authorization to new appropriations.34 In 1881, the district judge Phillip Emerson declared the 1880 law void because it violated the territorial Organic Act that had vested power over such decisions in district courts. Most counties reportedly ignored this judgment, and individuals continued to scramble to establish priority over water.35 In 1886 in Lehi, Utah, older pioneers tried to dispossess newer settlers. In the consequent case, the Utah Supreme Court declared that settlers before 1880 had equal right to the water, but prior appropria32 Bakken, Development of Law, 73; Alexander, Utah, The Right Place, 223. 33 In addition, as a means for older pioneer communities to retain control of the water, the law divided primary water rights into three stages of settlement: prior to 1860, 1860 to 1880, and after 1880. Pisani, To Reclaim a Divided West, 49. In each category the rights of the users were honored equally before the rights of users in a latter category. 34 Hutchins, Utah Law of Water Rights, 9, and Water Rights Laws, 286. 35 Val Holley, “Showdown at Geddes Gulch: How Prior Appropriation Ambushed Weber County,” Utah Historical Quarterly 77, no. 4 (2009): 338.


Vernon lies at the southern end of Rush Valley in current-day Tooele County. The Sheeprock Range curves to the south of this Mormon village in the shape of a scythe. In Israel Bennion’s time several streams—Vernon, Bennion, Dutch, and Harker—flowed from the mountains and converged in a delta, where farmers settled in 1863 because of the rich topsoil. Through the eons the 36 Ibid., 337. See also Alexander, Utah, the Right Place, 223– 24. 37 Holley, “Showdown at Geddes Gulch,” 338. 38 Clinton Robert Brimhall and Sandra Dawn Brimhall, “The Goshen and Mona Water Dispute, 1873–1881: A Case Study of the Struggle between Ecclesiastical and Secular Authority in Utah,” Utah Historical Quarterly 78, no. 4 (2010), 326–43. See also Holley, “Showdown at Geddes Gulch.” 39 Alexander, “John Wesley Powell, the Irrigation Survey, and the Inauguration of the Second Phase of Irrigation Development in Utah,” Utah Historical Quarterly 37, no. 2 (Spring 1969): 205.

In January 1894, Bennion summarized efforts during the previous year to settle “water difficulties, existing in Vernon.”41 John C. Sharp, the local LDS bishop, and Bennion, one of Sharp’s counselors, saw the benefits of continuing with an authority-driven system where church officials managed the water that was available to the community. Erick Johan Pehrson, the other counselor in the bishopric, advocated for a system that recognized individual claims on and democratic management of water. Bennion viewed Pehrson’s act as a selfish one, but he never discussed the fact that while Pehrson was on a mission in 1869, an unnamed speculator made a claim on his property, proved up, and took it from him.42 Pehrson might have once been bitter about the trend toward civil law having power independent of ecclesiastical 40 Deveral J. Fredricson, “History of Vernon Irrigation Company,” in Centennial Story Collection: Souvenir of Centennial Organization of Vernon Ward, n.p.: Transcript Bulletin Press, 1977. 41 Israel Bennion, Journal, January 7, 1894, Israel Bennion Journals, 1883, 1894–1943, MS 13900, LDS Church History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah (hereafter CHL). According to their descendants living in Vernon—Jackie, Helen, and Raymond Pehrson—neither Erick nor his son Emil left journals, except for Erick’s missionary journal. 42 Raymond Pehrson, interview by the author, May 17, 2013. None of the Pehrsons now living in Vernon knows who this person was.

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During the disagreements over water between 1893 and 1896, Israel Bennion’s decisions were consistently made on the basis of authority and community, while his opponents upheld the authority of an individual to establish water rights independent of other users. Although a water master was appointed sometime in the 1870s, the Vernon Irrigation Company was not organized until June 27, 1892. A later water master writes that local farmers formed the company “to help solve some of the water problems that plagued many of the early settlers in the valley.”40 However, many people came to resent the tightening control this company exerted and found onerous the assessments needed to expand community ditches.

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This brief history shows some of the forces that, between settlement and statehood, caused Utahns to abandon a communal system of water management and to adopt that system used in other western states, where water was property allotted through prior appropriation. In Vernon, the transition was accomplished only with difficulty. Conflict there, as in other parts of the state, reflected, in the words of Thomas Alexander, a “battle between an older Utah which had been built upon cooperation and a newer Utah which was to emerge in the twentieth century built upon a capitalistic base.”39

winding of the largest stream carved out a long valley, so Vernon lies about one hundred feet below the level of the flat. Early in the settlement of Vernon, farmers diverted water from a channel that flowed through the long, narrow valley.

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tion became the rule for determining right in diversions made after that date. Robert Dunbar describes the situation in Utah after the 1880 law as “a jungle of uncontrolled appropriations and undetermined water rights.”36 Water users in some counties decided the uncertainty meant that anybody could use any water they could divert.37 Despite the confusion, irrigators in many areas such as along the Weber River in northern Utah and Salt Creek in central Utah resorted to the law to defend or attack claims on water.38 But in other communities, including Vernon, water users avoided the non-Mormon courts and settled water difficulties through church courts. Water rights remained ambiguous until 1897, when the new state legislature codified prior appropriation as the sole standard for Utah.

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John C. Sharp, bishop of the LDS Vernon ward in 1894 and president of the Vernon Irrigation Company. —

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influence, but he began paying attention to that new set of laws. Tangled relationships intensified the conflict: Sharp served as president of the Vernon Water Company; Pehrson was vice president, Bennion secretary. Also, Bennion had married as his first wife Sharp’s cousin, and as his second wife, one of Pehrson’s daughters. In a long retrospective at the start of his journal Bennion described the historical context, writing that the “primary water rights to Vernon creek consisted of water for 220 acres of land, half meadow, and half plough land.” He claimed that the community generally used the water from the first of June through the first of September each year. “In the early settlement of the place,” he wrote, “A. P. Ericson and E. J. Pehrson, seeing here an opening, commenced to spread the water on land below the town.” They used spring runoff (secondary water) from farmers located upstream. “Years rolled on; Vernon’s 220 acres became ‘run-out,’ choked out with wild oats; did not yield enough to pay for cultivation.” The infestation by wild

oats might have been a natural invasion or it might have been facilitated by depleted soil. This condition reduced pasture and the amount of grass hay available to cut. “Our stock soon trimmed off our little patch of ground, and there being nowhere else for them to go, we were compelled to feed them, from November 1st to May 1st. This meant poverty for beast, poverty for man.”43 By the early 1890s, open rangeland had been seriously overgrazed. Early settlers of southern Rush Valley stocked cattle, sheep, and horses in the valleys, foothills, and canyons, where native grasses had established ecological primacy.44 Bennion inherited a depleted landscape both in his irrigated land and in the open land he may have used as a winter range for his cattle.

43 Bennion, Journal, January 7, 1894. This continues Bennion’s long summary of the previous year’s events. 44 Glynn Bennion, “A Pioneer Cattle Venture of the Bennion Family,” Utah Historical Quarterly 34, no. 4 (1966): 315–25.


Erick John Pehrson, second counselor in the Vernon ward bishopric and vice president of the water company. —

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However, Bennion noticed that someone was prospering: “Below [our fields], the two men I have named had hundreds of acres of hay and pasture. They sold us pasturage; they sold us hay; they got rich as we became poor; they fattened on what we threw away.”45 Bennion seemed to imply, in his summary of the previous year’s conflict, that the rights of the community were above the rights of the individual and that when conditions changed, water practice had to change so that the community could continue to prosper.

45 Thomas, in Development of Institutions, describes what was known as waste water, and Bennion’s language here is similar. Thomas said that this is one of the problematic aspects of the 1880 irrigation act, which provided for filing on “excess” water to obtain secondary rights. Because water studies had not been performed, officials found it difficult to determine what “normal” flow was; consequently, they had trouble determining the excess.

Transferring water from one location to another was acceptable under territorial law.47 However, this new diversion of water was problematic because there had to be available water to appropriate before a new diversion could be made.48 All water flowing to Vernon had certainly already been claimed. The appropriation doctrine had several other elements that caused Sharp and Bennion problems: first in time is first in right; no user could impair the rights of other users; and the water had to be put to beneficial use, or the right would be lost.49 When Pehrson and Ericson diverted spring runoff, they claimed a right to that secondary water. Although Bennion recognized the Pehrson and Ericson claim, he firmly believed that the community was more important than any individual right. He did not equivocate in his journal: “Knowing that the life of Vernon depended on her having the iron hand of Secondary Water Right removed from her throat, I interested that strong, determined, organizer, Bishop John C. Sharp, in the matter; and together we went to 46 Bennion, Journal, January 7, 1894. 47 Thomas, Development of Institutions, 82. 48 Ibid., 4. 49 Ibid., 1, 2, 5.

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Although Bennion expressed some self-doubt in his journal concerning his role in the conflict, he did not question his belief that Mormons were destined to fill the West. Prosperity was an index to righteousness and often worked against communal values. Both views were Eurocentric, disregarding the rights of the Goshutes who lived in Rush Valley before the Mormons came. Sometime during 1893, before his journal began, Bennion decided that it would improve the community to expand the land included in the domain of the irrigation company, which would also require using spring water previously used by Ericson and Pehrson. The conflict intensified: “When I read between the lines, and realized what was going on, and undertook to get out of the trap those men said ‘no’; it would be an injury to them, to quit throwing away; it was their means of living. And the law said ‘You must not make any change.’” Bennion proposed that the main body of settlers build a new canal and distribute excess runoff to new company land.46

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the people of vernon: a compilation of life stories (1983)

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This picture of Vernon, taken around 1915, shows the location of one of the ditches dug by the Vernon Irrigation Company in 1894 to flow along the town’s primary street. —

the rescue.” Bennion’s journals do not specify his reasons, but he probably recognized that a new diversion above town to irrigate new fields would have to follow the rules set up by the 1880 law and would be junior to the claim made by Ericson and Pehrson. Continuing his summary of these acts, Bennion wrote, “Amid suspicion, accusation, and bitter opposition, we worked, and accomplished our object. We bought out Ericson, compromised with Pehrson; secured control of the secondary water rights, and then sold the same to Vernon for a reasonable sum; then as President and Secretary of the Vernon Irrigation Company, we secured the vote of the shareholders to extend our limits from 220 acres to 1100 acres.”50 This process was completed following the advice of an attorney, LeGrand Young. On April 24, 1893, Bennion bought seventy-two-and-a-half acres for $750.51 Following the principles of the new 50 Bennion, Journal, January 7, 1894. 51 Grantee Index A 1888–1896, Tooele County Recorder’s Office, Tooele, Utah.

standard of prior appropriation, Bennion and Sharp purchased the land and its water right, but did so with traditional, communal goals in mind. Bennion and Sharp’s purpose was to retain authority for water distribution in the irrigation company, in the person of the water master, who would be appointed by him and Sharp. The grantee index for Tooele County shows that through the years between 1894 and 1896 water shares were bought, sold, traded, and lost through assessment by the water company. To Bennion, such transactions assisted struggling farmers, thus serving the larger community. Their next act was to initiate a new ditch “to carry the waters of Vernon Creek along the bench to the head of the street, there to be distributed.” Making a new ditch would enable farmers to irrigate land eastward of and higher than the old channel, including land on the bench or flat above Vernon. However, the stream would be distributed to five times as much land before it flowed to land below town, so there would not be as much water for use by Pehrson and Ericson, nor to other farmers whose land holdings did not expand as Bennion and Sharp’s did. Bennion thought of the ditch as “the means of beautifying and enlarging our town and opening to it the door of prosperity.” But the compromise that enabled this beautification required Pehrson to give up a bounty he had legal right to.


Wilt Thou bless these Thy Saints that dwell here, who have shown their faith by coming to this desert place to make a home. May Thy Spirit possess them; may they see eye to eye; realizing and appreciating Thy blessings, in increasing the water, in modifying the climate, and in fact, in giving them the riches of this earth, and the riches of eternity. May brotherly love abound; may the owners of water realize their responsibility to Thee, the Lord of the whole earth, and for a just remuneration, divide their water shares, with others of Thy worthy people; and may all be wise stewards, so that if a man shall sell three-fourths of his water, remaining fourth will produce more than the whole, before it was divided.52 He predicted that dividing the water would multiply it, not unlike the New Testament miracle of the loaves and fishes. His prayer provided a way for good people to use the new laws (where water could be owned privately) in the service of the old tradition. The prayer of promise could have been heard as a not-so-veiled threat: without brotherly love, the water flow would diminish. 52 Bennion, Journal, January 7, 1894.

Whatever their specific complaints, the independent-minded individuals in Vernon, disturbed by the restrictiveness of the new system, believed that Bennion and Sharp had taken advantage of them. On April 24, 1894, water from the creek began flowing in the new ditch. When Bennion “found the dam at the head of the irrigating ditch broken” two weeks later, he and Sharp repaired it.55 A few days later the stockholders of the water company met to consider David Sharp’s dissatisfaction with the new appropriations of water. David “made threats, and left the meeting.”56 David, Bishop Sharp’s first cousin and Bennion’s brother-in-law, complained because the company had forced him to make assessed payments in money or labor. When he refused to make these payments, the company stripped him of twelve shares of water.57

53 Thomas G. Alexander, “Irrigating the Mormon Heartland: The Operation of the Irrigation Companies in Wasatch Oasis Communities, 1847–1880,” Agricultural History 76 (2002): 176. 54 Thomas, Institutions under Irrigation, 125. 55 Bennion, Journal, May 9, 1894. 56 Ibid., May 14, 1894. 57 Refusal to pay assessments or work on the system also plagued the irrigation company in Orem, Utah. See Alexander, Utah, the Right Place, 223.

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Despite Bennion’s hope that the compromise would settle the problem, late the following spring of 1894, when farmers required water for irrigation, trouble resumed. While part of the problem was the unchangeable scarcity of water, another influence was the unwillingness to share in the work of maintaining the new ditches.53 Irrigation organizations had the power to tax members for irrigation projects that would only help some of the members.54 This was the situation in Vernon, where all the members of the company were assessed to expand the land of a few. This caused irritation because one of the few was the already-wealthy Bishop Sharp.

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Late that summer and fall, the citizens of Vernon completed the diversion dam and ditch. Unfortunately, they first put the ditch to use during the winter. The water froze and flooded onto “the prairie.” They then turned the water back into the old channel for the winter.

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Bennion hoped his and Sharp’s plan would mean the end of conflict over water. As the community prepared to construct the new diversion dam and ditch, he delivered a prayer: “Heavenly Father we have gathered at this place to make an irrigating ditch; wilt Thou bless and consecrate the performance of this labor to the welfare of our souls, and to the building up and beautifying of Zion.” He then blessed the mountains that their “treasures of snow” would increase and the springs that they would “pour forth abundantly.” He blessed the dam, canal, laterals, and fields “that they may yield abundantly, and that with less irrigation than heretofore, so that more land may be taken up, and more of Thy people provided with homes and the means of sustenance.” Lastly, he blessed the people, saying that God would help them be unified and would modify the climate and hence amplify the water if they were righteous. He continued:

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The next day David Sharp was arrested by an unnamed official for holding water out of his turn.58 It might be that he was using a water share that the water company had stripped from him in lieu of an assessment. An ecclesiastical court tried him the next day.59 Sharp retaliated, as reported by Bennion: “D. Sharp had watermaster D. Bennion [Bennion’s brother] and Emil Pehrson arrested for breaking his dam.”60 Emil Pehrson, who helped fulfill the business of the water company, was Erick Pehrson’s son, one of the two men who had originally filed on secondary water. The disagreeing parties, with the approval of their religious leader, the stake president, decided to submit their claims to the judgment of an arbitrator.61 The resulting settlement permitted David Sharp to withdraw from the irrigation company. In return, he “relinquish[ed] all claim to water from October 1st to April 1st of each year.” If he was angry about being assessed work or money for an irrigation system that did not benefit him directly, the terms of the settlement likely satisfied his complaint. Sharp took his water shares with him when he left the company, including 58 Bennion, Journal, May 15, 1894. 59 Ibid., May 16, 1894.

This head gate, used when the author was a child, is probably close to the same location as the diversion dam built by the Vernon Irrigation Company in 1894. In the mountains, six miles in the background, are the sources of Vernon irrigation water, currently stored in a reservoir and transported across the flat in an undergound pipe. —

author’s collection

those he had lost because of delinquent payments, but he agreed to irrigate a limited amount of land, “not to exceed 30 acres.”62 While the arbitration seemed to solve one problem, a week later there was more trouble. “In the evening, Emil Pehrson came to me, and said he would not abide the rules of the Irrigation Company, but would insist on having his turn as it was before any changes were made,” Bennion recorded. “I cautioned him against taking such a course, and told him that if the corporation were broken up, within two years the people would be begging to have it reestablished, and to have the measures adopted they

60 Ibid., May 17, 1894. 61 Ibid., May 18, 1894.

62 Ibid., May 22, 1894.


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63 Ibid., May 28, 1894. 64 Map of Vernon, no date [circa 1900], in the Tooele County Recorder’s Office, Tooele, Utah. The map post dates 1893.

John C. Sharp’s mansion, built on his property southward in Vernon, is the grandest structure in the history of Vernon. —

utah state historical society

Bishop Sharp, as I know that our motives have been for the building up of His Kingdom.”65 Pehrson contended that many of the people in Vernon, those who could not afford to acquire more property, had less water when the new land came under irrigation.66 Although Pehrson viewed the water company’s act as oppressive, the bishop would have seen the irrigation company as the means through which Vernon 65 Bennion, Journal, June 3, 1894. 66 Ironically, Pehrson found himself in a position similar to non-Mormon settlers in Utah, who found irrigation companies’ control of water to be excessive. In 1880 the Utah Supreme Court in Munroe v. Ivie wrote: “This is a free country, and the lands are open to all, and the appropriation of the water is open to all, and the legislature cannot pass any law that will put it into the power of an irrigating company to control and manage the waters of any part of the Territory, regardless of the rights of the parties. Nor will the court allow irrigating companies to become engines of oppression.” Albert Hagen, Reports of Cases Determined in the Supreme Court of the Territory of Utah from the January Term, 1877, to the June Term, 1880 Inclusive (Chicago: Callaghan, 1881), 2:538.

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are now so unwilling to accept.”63 Emil, Erick Pehrson’s son, demanded a return to the schedule of water turns from before Bennion and the bishop revised them. His complaint centered not on the assessment but on the duration of his water turn. In addition, perhaps he had watched the water declining in his ditches due to drought. He believed the fault lay with the irrigation company. On a plat map of Vernon roughly dated around the turn of the century, Emil Pehrson owned five parcels of land.64 The map shows land being watered from the new ditch, located farther up the bench and to the east than the older irrigation works. Since four of the parcels owned by Pehrson could have been watered directly from the creek, irrigating from the new ditch would have brought water to one-fifth of his land but decreased the flow to the other four-fifths. Pehrson talked “extremely hard” to Bennion about the plan devised by Bennion and Bishop Sharp. He said their acts were dishonest and that they had “robbed the widows and fatherless,” presumably because they had less water to spread across their gardens and small fields. Bennion declared that “the Lord will vindicate me, and also

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could open new land to irrigation. But although Bennion remarked several times on the bishop’s aggressive self-interest, he, too, considered the rights of the community, as embodied in the authority of the bishop, to be superior to the rights of the individual. Bennion, the bishop, and a handful of others stood alone in this judgment. “Opposition to the Bishop runs high,” he wrote in June 1894.67 Tension had grown because stream flow had declined, inadequate to satisfy irrigation demands. In fact the stream was so low that Bennion could not get water to flow through a new ditch around the upper end of his field.68 A week later the water had “given out.”69 It was a bad year to try to water five times more land with a reduced stream. On July 4, when the community traditionally gathered to celebrate its freedoms, Bennion wrote about the division between the bishop’s faction and the rest of town: “No celebration here, excepting a promiscuous gathering at Durrants’, without leadership, without order. The Saints here, on various fancied grievances, have arrayed themselves against the Ward authorities; thus greatly retarding the social, and religious well-being of the Ward.” Like his communalism, his reverence for authority was religious in origin. That fall he attended the LDS church’s general conference in Salt Lake City, later writing, “The irrigation question was talked of; the course already taken by Bishop Sharp and I in regard to those things was strongly recommended; otherwise we will be brought, in a measure, into subjection to our enemies, who are watching us.”70 By “enemies,” he probably referred to the general incursion of non-Mormons into Utah. He and others believed laxity in this effort would likely take 67 Bennion, Journal, June 8, 1894. 68 Ibid., June 12, 1894. 69 Ibid., June 18, 1894. 70 Ibid., October 8, 1894. The Deseret Evening News, October 8, 1894, reported that Franklin Richards spoke in the Mormon General Conference, saying that it was not a good time for the saints to “throw down their guard.” They should not be moved to “narrow-minded contrivances for the benefit of the few to the injury of the whole,” and they should do nothing in the political arena that would weaken them. During the same conference, Joseph F. Smith said that they should take up land adjacent to already-formed communities, rather than trying to settle in isolated areas where there was no church organization.

water rights away from the Mormons, especially if they were not united. Bennion wrote that it wasn’t only in Vernon that LDS church authorities worried about the effects of prior appropriation. “The organization of the Utah Company, at the head of which stands the First Presidency, is a move towards making Zion the head and not the heel,” he wrote. “The Saints were urged to divide the water and the land, and make such use of both, as to support the most settlers possible; in the organized wards; and to avoid scattering too much.”71 For Bennion, dividing the land and water amongst the community simply made good practical sense, because it was a mingling of economics and religion. The acts and proclamations of Mormon leaders threatened non-Mormon settlers, but this push to retain authority over water with the wards also caused difficulties for newcomers and for other marginal users of the water. That fall and winter Bennion worked on various projects that would make better use of water during the following spring. He plowed ditches and hauled sods, “making dams in the gulches, so as to catch the flood water and level up the ground.”72 He completed one ditch “by working hard in wind, rain, and snow.” He wanted to complete this ditch so he could use it “very early in the spring.”73 His desire was to catch the water before the normal irrigation schedule, just as Erikson and Pehrson had done. Even after the ground froze hard, he kept working, hauling “straw manure to fill up old ditches in hay meadow.”74 Once again, winter brought a long period of peace. When spring came, trouble resumed. Bennion wrote, “By arrangement with other water owners, Bishop Sharp, Brother Pehrson, and I have been dividing the irrigating water equally. A few days ago Brother Pehrson claimed that the Bishop had been taking more than his share, so he went and stopped my 71 Bennion, Journal, October 8, 1894. In an article entitled “Working for Utah,” a Mr. Wantland wrote that incorporation of the Utah Company was possibly an effort by the Mormon church to retain political control of land and water when Utah became a state. Deseret Evening News, October 8, 1894. 72 Bennion, Journal, November 30, 1894. 73 Ibid., December 5, 1894. 74 Ibid., February 5, 1895.


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stream.”75 For some reason Pehrson stopped Bennion’s stream and not the bishop’s, the person he thought was taking more than his share. A few days later, Bennion wrote, “Brother Pehrson gave me a scolding about ‘water,’ with incidental hits against the Bishop and David [Bennion]. Said we were dishonest. I feel that I can hardly tolerate Brother Pehrson’s insults, but I have complained about it to the church authorities before, and they have counseled ‘putting up with it:’ excusing him on account of age, and training; saying ‘you can’t change the spots on 75 Ibid., March 29, 1895. It’s not clear whether Bennion meant father or son, but references to age and habit suggest the elder Pehrson, Erick.

This plat map of Vernon shows the parcels of land owned by Emil Pehrson. —

tooele county recorder’s office

the leopard.’”76 Bennion’s view of communitarian control by church leaders made it difficult for him to embrace any other perspective, so he blamed upbringing and age for Pehrson’s obstinance. Bennion listened to Pehrson more out of a condescending charity than out of a desire to be convinced that his neighbor might have a legitimate complaint. That same day David 76 Ibid., March 30, 1895.


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Bennion resigned as water master because he was offended by Pehrson’s remarks.

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In all these matters, Bennion’s motive was to keep control of water in the hands of the irrigation company: “Took the water from Brother Pehrson 20 hours after my turn began, he having grumbled so much about lack of water.”77 On April 8, David Sharp took the water ten hours early, but when caught claimed to have made a mistake. On April 10, a Brother Anderson played the same trick, costing Bennion eight hours of water. As others entered the battle over water, he continued to try to mediate. Brothers Elg and Durrant disagreed concerning the size of two ditches that Durrant had built to cross Elg’s land. Bennion and the bishop brought them together to compromise.78 “The brethren were willing to receive counsel, which is good,” Bennion wrote, “but I think we should be wise, forbearing, courteous, charitable, and not require such elaborate ‘settling.’”79 Interestingly, the next week he found that the schedule of water turns had a gap, an extra day that nobody claimed. “I notified the watermaster, and was instructed to let the water run down the meadow, where it will do some good to all.”80 This act would have been satisfactory under both the old law and the new, when unused water returned to the public arena. In addition to believing that people could be brought to such a pitch of righteousness that they would not disagree about water, Bennion persisted in his belief that righteousness would increase the water: “Watered the lucern by nine o’clock; the surplus water covering most of the hayland. Took the water down to the lower farm, very large stream. I have set the example of selling half my water, and do not miss it.”81 He was determined to make the water 77 Ibid., April 1, 1895. 78 They agreed that the ditch should remain the same size, that Durrant should keep it clean, and that Durrant’s old ditch would be abandoned so Elg could fill it in. They were warned not to allow water to back up onto a neighbor’s land. Ibid., April 30, 1895. 79 Ibid. 80 Ibid., May 6, 1895. 81 Ibid., May 8, 1895. Powell, in Report on the Lands, 104–06, wrote that the streams actually did increase in volume directly after the early Mormon settlements. He rejected several explanations, such as the laying of railroad tracks, the cultivation of the soil, or divine

spread across the expanded farming area, and he was convinced that God would reward his communitarian efforts. A few days later the stake presidency was called in to settle a new conflict concerning a dam built by Pehrson in a ditch owned by the bishop but traversing Pehrson’s land. Bennion wrote, “I feel that at the bottom of this, as well as many of our difficulties, is too great love for the things of this world, and too little appreciation of the ‘unspeakable things of the Kingdom.’ A dollar is allowed precedence of the love and fellowship of our brother.”82 He might have been speaking about both Pehrson and the bishop. After the meeting, Bennion wrote, “A general handshaking occurred at the last; and apparently all was peace. I feel that while such trifling things are allowed to occasion, so much settling by higher authority, while men holding the priesthood give way to bursts of temper, exhibitions of selfish weakness, the adversary can work mischief, according to his own good pleasure.”83 Despite the decision of the stake presidency that Pehrson should remove the dam, five days later it was still in place. Bennion described his reaction to their years of squabbling: I have become discouraged, working with a divided, fault-finding people; and don’t feel to undertake any more schemes. Utah is about to become a state, and the chances are that irrigation laws will be revised. In the interests of the state (the people), committees should investigate the sources of water supply, securing to prior holders reasonable rights and privileges; and throwing open all surplus to occupation and settlement; providing for economical use of water, as against waste, destruction, selfishness, etc. We are educated to think that another’s providence. Instead, Powell attributed the increase to changes in the surface of the land on which rain fell: damage to forests and grassland forced water to flow into streams rather than being absorbed into the earth. Powell also suggested that causes were removal of driftwood and beaver dams that impeded flow. Bennion may have watched the increase in the stream, but chose to believe that God’s blessing was the cause. 82 Bennion, Journal, May 11, 1895. 83 Ibid., May 12, 1895.


84 Ibid., May 16, 1895. 85 Ibid., May 24, 1895. 86 Ibid., June 3, 1895. 87 Ibid., June 23, 1895.

The land that once was the town of Benmore now sits idle, and only a few foundations remain—monuments to Bennion’s reluctance to enter an age where religious community was separate from economics. His nature was formed by an opposition between values identified as Mormon—community, authority, and the belief that obedience will bring prosperity— and western American values—independence and the aggressive acquisition of resources. The practical exigency of scarce water and pasture forced the compromise of abstract ideology for every western rancher. The choices Bennion made concerning these scarce resources moderated his character and values. Ironically, when the community most needed to work together during a dry year, the law was moving from supporting communal benefit to private ownership. His propensity to cling to previous communal traditions put him at odds with the community he strove to represent and unify.

John Bennion, Israel Bennion’s great-grandson, is Associate Professor of English at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah.

WEB EXTRA At history.utah.gov/water, you’ll find a sampling of the water use records available at the Utah State Historical Society’s research center, including journals, correspondence, and water filings.

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In a further effort to solve the problems, Sharp asked for impartial arbitrators, the bishop and his counselors from a neighboring town, to judge the case.85 Bennion wrote that as he was irrigating his own field, Brother Pehrson “talked water” again, wondering which side Bennion was on in the cases he wanted to bring against the bishop. He wrote, “I said I could only judge of the rightfulness or wrongfulness of a matter on hearing it, and then if obliged to take any part, it would be to espouse the cause of truth.”86 Later that month Bennion and the bishop decided to “withdraw our opposition to Brother Pehrson and sustain him as counselor; but have little to do with him.” How could they have little to do with him in such a small town as Vernon, when all three men were members of one bishopric, had familial bonds through marriage, and had to work together? Bennion continued, “We consider him a good man but eccentric, lacking in sensibility, and order. Also a little too much in love with the things of this world.” Despite his propensity to judge harshly those who did not agree with him, Bennion understood the problem with pointing fingers: “In entering in this judgment of him, my own faults loom up big before me.”87 At the end of that year, Sharp announced that the difficulty between himself and Pehrson had been satis

Soon Bennion left Vernon and attempted to farm closer to Harker Canyon on a homestead he named Ben Lomond. He aimed to show users lower on the creek that moving higher would cause them to prosper. When that project did not work out as he had hoped, he formed another community near the mouth of Bennion Canyon, naming it Benmore. He and the other families who joined him, including the Skidmores, used water directly from the canyon and tested the new theories of dry farming. Bennion persisted in believing that if people cooperated and followed conservationist principles, God would bless them with ample water.

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Bennion recognized the new law supporting prior appropriation but hoped that communitarian feeling would enable distribution of water in a manner that wouldn’t stint progress and would provide for all members of the community.

factorily settled and that the bishopric was in harmony. But water struggles in the desert are never really over.

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loss is our gain. The idea of gain to both is, in our philosophy, adverse to all law and reason. We are in need of a higher education, a broader philanthropy, a deeper philosophy, a charitable, brotherly, Christianity; “each man seeking the interest of his neighbor;” “preferring another, in honor, before ourselves.” This would tend to bring about harmony in matters pertaining to irrigation and also in a number of other directions.84

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A group of Ute Indians photographed by B. H. Gurnsey, circa 1875 —

denver public library


through Google’s Picasa Face Recognition Tool BY

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Historians want to include photographs of the people and places they write about, and digital databases across the world now make historic images readily available. The problem is making sure that the photographs are correctly identified. In years past, archivists had to depend on identifications supplied by either the photographer or someone familiar with the topic and collection. In many cases, catalogers read identifications from handwritten notes on the back of the photographs, which often provided only cursory information, such as “Group photo same as above” or “Ute Indians.” Now historians have tools that can help them accurately identify people in historical photographs—free face recognition programs, such as Picasa. This article demonstrates the utility of this technology by applying it to photographs of the Ute Indians who once lived in Colorado and were relocated to Utah. In the late 1800s photographers would pay a small token to American Indians willing to sit for their photographs and then sell the photographs to tourists. Consequently, many photographs exist of the Utes. However, several digital image databases misidentify photographs of Ute Indians or simply do not label them at all. Some of these captions include the “Ute” names of the pictured individuals. However, some photographers even went so far as to create Indian-sounding names for their subjects. Those fabricated names do not appear in either census records or annuity lists for the same people. Further compounding matters, some photographs—such as the one chosen for this demonstration—even bear two different call numbers and two entirely different descriptions of who is in the picture.

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Setting the Ute Photographic Record Straight

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Figure 1. Gurnsey’s photograph, with the author’s identification, using face recognition. Front row: Powatch (d), Quenche (c), Ouray (a). Backrow: Colorow’s son (e), Colorow (b), Pooppe? ( f ), Charley Alhandra (g), unidentified man, unidentified woman. —

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As I have prepared a comprehensive family history of Northern Ute tribal members, these discrepancies have been a source of great frustration: putting faces on the story obviously requires correct identification of photographs. During my research, I was introduced to a tool previously accessible only to law enforcement and government security agencies, face recognition. Now, such power is in the hands of the general public through such software as Google’s free program, Picasa. Picasa searches for faces in all of the photographs that are introduced to it; it then creates thumbnail photographs of these faces and asks the researcher to identify these unnamed individuals. Once the user tags one thumbnail, Picasa will analyze the other faces it has found and present the user with likely matches. If the user accepts this recommendation, the program quickly adds more faces to the assortment for consideration. Through the use of Picasa’s face recognition tool, I have finally been able to correctly identify many Utes who were previously unidentified or misidentified in group and individual photographs. The use of this tool helps researchers to identify people in historic photographs with a new degree of accuracy. Because of their similar facial features, Picasa even groups family members together. The first photograph I examined, one often seen in books and articles about the Utes (fig.

1), comes from a stereograph taken by Byron H. Gurnsey in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Gurnsey was in the photographic business in Colorado Springs from 1872 to 1880. He also had a studio in Pueblo from 1872 to 1875; in 1875 he was in a partnership with Eugene Brandt.1 The test photograph, figure one, shows a group of Native Americans in front of a building in Colorado Springs, Colorado; this B. H. Gurnsey photograph underscores the role face recognition software can play in deciphering the past.2 The Denver Public Library database lists this image under two numbers, X-30557 and Z-2727. The first item, X-30557, is one half of a stereograph image; the second, Z-2727, is the complete stereograph. When this project began, number X-30557 bore the caption “Chief Colorow, Captain Jack, Piah, and others.” The library provided this description of photograph: Group portrait of Native American men (Ute): Chief Colorow (with a felt hat on his knee); Captain Jack, left top row; and Piah, fourth from left on top row, 1 Opal Harbar, “Directory of Early Photographers: 1853 through 1900” in Terry William Mangan, Colorado on Glass: Colorado’s First Half Century As Seen by the Camera (Denver: Sundance, 1975), 394; see also Tenth Census of the United States, 1880, Colorado, El Paso County, Colorado Springs, p. 40, 41, ED43, lines 488-50, 1–5. 2 X-30557, Denver Public Library Digital Collections (hereafter DPL), accessed March 24, 2014, http:// cdm16079.contentdm.oclc.org/cdm/singleitem/ collection/p15330coll22/id/20506/rec/6.


pose in front of the B. H. Gurnsey studio in Colorado Springs (El Paso County), Colorado. Their costumes include sashes, beaded bags, rifles, bows and arrows. Window lettering reads: “B. H. Gurnsey Views.”

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This statement estimated the image’s date as 1875.3 It also noted, “Hand-written on back of print ‘Ouray and others.’”4 The photograph itself bears a faint label in its lower right corner: “Ouray.” The Library of Congress website provides a similar description of the Gurnsey group portrait that includes an additional line from the back of the photograph: “Ouray and others.”5

This entry dates the photograph between 1872 and 1880.7 According to the caption of Z-2727, the photographer himself provided this description. Interestingly, the hand-written note “Ouray” in the bottom right corner is cut off from this image. So who was who? Was the man with a felt hat on 3 Since I made the results of my research known to the Denver Public Library, the description of X-30557 has been changed to read, in part, “Group of Native American men (Ute) including Chief Ouray.” Ibid. 4 Ute Indians, Z-2727, DPL, accessed March 25, 2014, http://cdm16079.contentdm.oclc.org/cdm/singleitem/ collection/p15330coll22/id/67575/rec/84. 5 Chief Colorow, Captain Jack, Piah and Others, “History of the American West, 1860–1920: Photographs from the Collection of the Denver Public Library,” Library of Congress, accessed March 27, 2014, http://memory.loc.gov/cgi-bin/ query/r?ammem/AMALL:@field%28NUMBER+@ band%28codhawp+10030557%29%29. 6 Ute Indians, Z-2727, DPL. 7 Ibid.

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Figure 2. Ouray and Chipeta. —

library of congress

his knee Ouray or Colorow? Picasa has helped to answer that question. INDIVIDUAL 1: OURAY The note in the lower right hand corner of Gurnsey’s photograph (fig. 1a) clearly identifies the man in the right of the front row as Ouray, one of the most photographed Utes of all time. Using Picasa, I compared photographs of Ouray taken during approximately the same time period (fig. 2).8 A Picasa examination of accurately labeled photographs demonstrates that the man on the right in the front row of Gurnsey’s stereograph is indeed Chief Ouray, not Colorow, as numerous books and articles have stated.9 Authors are not necessarily to blame for 8 Ouray and Wife, Z-2726, DPL, accessed June 25, 2014, http://cdm16079.contentdm.oclc.org/cdm/singleitem/ collection/p15330coll22/id/67541/rec/101. 9 Arlene Appah and Janet Cuch, “Gutsy Ute Woman: Sarah Mountain,” Outlaw Trail Journal 37 (Summer 2009): 57; Richard Davis, “Bloody Siege at Milk Creek,” True West Magazine 60, no. 7 (July 2013): 34; Jan Pettit, Utes: The Mountain People (Boulder, CO: Johnson Printing, 1990), 36. P. David Smith, Ouray, Chief of the Utes (Ridgeway, CO: Wayfinder, 1990), 78.

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Chief Ouray sits and holds a felt hat and a rifle. Men have braids and wear sashes, choker necklaces, fur hair wraps, beaded bags with fringe, earrings, leather leggings, and moccasins and hold rifles or bows and arrows. Lettering in a window of a brick building reads: “B. H. Gurnsey Views.”6

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The Denver Public Library lists this same photograph with the catalog number Z-2727 and the title “Ute Indians.” The caption reads, in part,

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INDIVIDUAL 2: COLOROW

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Figure 3. Colorow, from one half of a stereograph made by B. A. Hawkins in 1874. —

Using the face recognition technique, I identified a separate person in Gurnsey’s photograph—the tall man in the back row, second left, wearing a flat-topped hat—as Colorow, a famous chief of the Northern Utes (fig. 1b). Personal effects provided another set of clues for this effort: a photograph taken by B. A. Hawkins in Denver in 1874 shows Colorow with a similar flat-topped hat (fig. 3).12 He holds a “new, or almost new, Maynard rifle” and a long-barreled piston, in comparison to Ouray’s gun in the photograph. 13 The Hawkins photograph, which I used as a control, finally surfaced after I searched for a year in the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) collection; Hawkins had labeled it “Coloron Ute.”14 This photograph evidently served as the model for a sketch that appeared in an 1879 issue of Harper’s Weekly and in Jacob Dunn’s 1886 Massacres of the Mountains.15 After a hunting fracas in northwestern Colorado in the early fall of 1887, Colorow and his band finally moved onto the reservation in Utah where they were living when he died on December 11, 1888.16

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such mistakes; when a photograph in a widely used database is mislabeled, a single error will ripple through the subsequent literature. One caption stated, “His rifle is in a “fine buckskin case.”10 Such descriptions of personal items add an additional layer of identifying elements beyond facial recognition to verify identification. Ouray died in 1880, after having gone to Washington to meet with American leaders about negotiating a treaty and setting aside a reservation. He died as the final signing, which sent the Utes to Utah, occurred at the Southern Ute Agency at Ignacio, Colorado.11 10 Smith, Ouray, 78. 11 Clifford Duncan, “The Northern Utes of Utah” in A History of Utah’s American Indians, ed. Forrest S. Cuch (Salt Lake City: Utah State Division of Indian Affairs / Utah State Division of History, 2000), 196; Robert Silbernagel, Troubled Trails: The Meeker Affair and the Expulsion of the Utes from Colorado (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 2011), 157–59. Congress ratified the treaty on June 15, 1880, after Utes had signed

it in Washington on March 6, 1880. It took many months before it was considered signed by the commission and the Utes because the Indian Commission officers had to make the rounds to the many camps and agencies. They were at Ignacio at the Southern Ute Agency when Ouray died. Acts of 46th Cong., 2nd Sess., ch. 223 (1880), 183, 186. 12 B. A. Hawkins, Colorow, Ute Chief, stereograph, Photo Lot 90-1, number 112, National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution, Suitland, MD. 13 Smith, Ouray, 78. 14 NAA has since corrected the misspelling in its database to “Hawkins, Colorow, Ute Chief.” The name Coloran appears in the testimony given by Josephine Meeker on November 4, 1879, which was submitted as part of the White River Ute Commission Investigation of the Meeker incident of September 1879. Joseph Brady, the miller at the Los Pinos Indian Agency, used the name Colorado to refer to Colorow in the same investigation. See White River Ute Commission Investigation, 46th Cong., 2d Sess., H. Ex. Doc. 83 (1880), 28, 41. For more on the Meeker affair, see Silbernagel, Troubled Trails. 15 Harper’s Weekly, October 25, 1897, 845; Jacob Piatt Dunn Jr., Massacres of the Mountains: A History of the Indian Wars of the Far West (New York: Archer House, 1886), 700. 16 “Chief Colorow Dead.” Leadville (CO) Daily and Evening Chronicle, December 13, 1888.


Gurnsey photograph of this man with a sketch and photograph of Ouray’s brother, Quenche, made in 1869 (fig. 4).18 Genealogical research supports the hypothesis that the man in the picture was in fact Ouray’s brother.19 Unfortunately, an exhaustive study of other photographs of Utes, either by themselves or in group portraits, has not revealed Quenche in any other picture.

18 Yulé et Quincy, X-30707, DPL, accessed March 27, 2014, http://cdm16079.contentdm.oclc.org/cdm/singleitem/ collection/p15330coll22/id/20030/rec/918.

Figure 4. Quenche, from an 1868 illustration entitled “Yulé et Quincy, chefs des Yutes.” —

denver public library

INDIVIDUAL 3: QUENCHE The man sitting to the left of Ouray in Gurnsey’s stereograph (fig. 1c) has been often identified as Piah (Peah or Black-tailed Deer), the “Napoleon” chief of the Yampa Utes and possibly Colorow’s brother-in-law.17 However, in many tests, the Picasa program always pairs the 17 X-30557, DPL.

19 Quenche, Quinche, Quincy, or Cinche, was born in 1832 in Taos, New Mexico. According to legend, Ouray and Quenche’s mother died giving birth to Quenche. In a letter written on July 20, 1864, from Santa Fe, J. M. Collins, superintendent of Indians in New Mexico, described that in negotiations in 1864, Lafayette Head’s contingent consisted of Shawano (Shavano) and two brothers, “Ulah or Ule & Quinche; both speak Spanish.” Colorado Superintendency records, roll 197, NARA. 20 William H. Jackson, Powatch, CHS.J1029, History Colorado (hereafter HC), accessed March 27, 2014, http://cdm16079.contentdm.oclc.org/cdm/singleitem/ collection/p15330coll21/id/7258/rec/1. 21 William G. Chamberlain, Group of Seven, Princeton University Digital Library, accessed March 27, 2014, http://arks.princeton.edu/ark:/88435/b5644s26c. 22 “Agreement with the Capote, Muache, and Weeminuche Utes,” Pagosa Springs, Colorado, November 9, 1878, “Mose, his x mark,” Office of Indian Affairs, Annual Report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs for the Year 1879 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1879), p. 178.

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In Gurnsey’s photograph (fig. 1d), the man seated on the left in the front row with a handful of arrows and quiver at his feet is Powatch, also known as Mose (fig. 5).20 When analyzed with face recognition software, three photographs— one by William Henry Jackson labeled Powatch and a pair of photographs by William G. Chamberlain that label the same person as Mose— suggest that Powatch was given two names. Mose also appears with Kwakonut in a number of photographs taken by Jackson on July 4, 1873, one with the famous Muache Ute chief, Curecanti.21 Powatch, signing as Mose, was one of the subchiefs who signed the 1878 treaty that relinquished the rights of the Muache, Capota, and Weiminuche Utes to the lands of the Confederated Ute Reservation and placed them on the San Juan River on what is now the Southern Ute Reservation.22

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wives had many sons: Pooppe bore Jim, Daniel, and Robert; Siah bore Chequito (Chick), Waperatz (Enie or Enny), Frank, Tabernash, Uncapahgugunt (Brock), and Waratza.26 Because of his knowledge of English, Waperatz often accompanied Colorow and served as an interpreter for Colorow throughout his life.27 Perhaps, then, the young man in Gurnsey’s group photograph was Waperatz.

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Figure 5. Powatch, photographed by William Henry Jackson, circa 1882–1900. —

Two women appear in figure one but according to Picasa tests neither of them are the two most photographed Ute women of the time: Chipeta, Ouray’s spouse (fig. 2), and Siah Colorow (fig. 6b), one of Chief Colorow’s wives, who raised at least seven of his children.28 The women may be the wives of the men they stand next to. If that is the case, the woman standing next to Colorow (fig. 1f ) could be his second wife, Siah’s older sister, Pooppe (fig. 6d), who raised five of Colorow’s children.29 However, Ute women are rarely identified in photographs if indeed they even appear. It will take much more research to determine Pooppe’s presence in other photographs of the Colorow clan and Ute Indians.30

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INDIVIDUAL 5: COLOROW’S SON Some researchers have identified the man on the far left of the back row (fig. 1e) as Nicaagat or Captain Jack.23 The man moved when the picture was taken, so the photograph is slightly out of focus. Despite the focus issue, Picasa did not match this photograph with any other images of Nicaagat. Rather, it paired the thumbnail with pictures of one of Chief Colorow’s sons (fig. 6c).24 This handsome son of Colorow appears in a number of single and group photographs of Northern Utes as well as in images of Colorow’s family.25 Who was he? Colorow and two of his

26 Allotment and probate records, “Si-ah Colorow,” Allotment 414, 1905; “Jim Colorow (Wit-cha),” p. 183, Allotment 400, 1924; “Bob Colorow (Ar-mon-tabbywatz),” p. 184, Allotment 403-404, 1914; “Wap-er-atz (Enie),” p. 295, Allotment 470; Si-bel-lo (Colorow’s son-in-law), p. 180, Allotment 390- 391, 1911, Janet Cuch collection. 27 “Stories of Colorado, Notorious Ute Chief,” Steamboat Pilot, January 18, 1929, 6. Waperatz and his three wives raised a large family of at least fourteen children, some of whom were their wards. One of his daughters, Patchowseratz, attended college. Waperatz died in 1907. White River Ute Indians, Ouray Agency, 1895 Indian Census, p. 596, entry 24, roll 608, Indian Census Rolls, 1885–1940, M595, NARA; Mrs. W. G. King, “Our Ute Indians,” Colorado Magazine 37, no. 2 (April 1960): 128.

23 Davis, “Bloody Siege,” 34.

28 William Henry Jackson, Chipeta (July 1874), CHS40201, DPL-30679, DPL; Chamberlain, Colorow Family, HC.

24 William G. Chamberlain, Colorow Family, Scan 10039013, F-6671, HC.

29 Pooppe allotment records, #397, died April 15, 1910, Janet Cuch collection.

25 Lena M. Urquhart, Colorow, the Angry Chieftain (Denver: Golden Bell Press, 1968), 32.

30 Janet Cuch to Elizabeth Simmons, March 25, 2014, in the author’s possession.


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INDIVIDUAL 7: CHARLEY ALHANDRA One description of Gurnsey’s group photograph identifies the man fourth from the left as Piah (fig. 1g).31 The Picasa analysis shows that the man is not Piah but most likely Charley Alhandra, a Ute subchief nicknamed “Ignacio’s lieutenant” (referring to his position on the Indian police force) who signed many of the treaties between the Utes and the American government.32 In 1900, he earned two hundred dollars per year as an interpreter for the Ouray Agency, the center of the Uncompahgre Ute reservation in Utah at that time.33 The photograph of Charley Alhandra (fig. 7) that Picasa matched with the man in Gurnsey’s photograph was taken in 1880 by Matthew Brady in Washington, D.C.; 31 X-30557, DPL. 32 Robert Athearn, “Major Hough’s March into Southern Ute Country,” Colorado Magazine 25, no. 3 (May 1948): 104. 33 Annual Report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the Year 1900 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1900), 697; see also “Indian Agency Employees, Part 2,” Chipeta: Ute Peacemaker, accessed June 26, 2014, http://chipeta.wordpress.com/2013/0520/indianagency-employees-part 2/.

Figure 6. Colorow family, with labels. The labeled indivuduals are Colorow (a), Siah Colorow (b), Waperatz Colorow? (c) and Pooppe? (d). —

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Ute chiefs had traveled to the nation’s capital to sign a treaty that sent them to Utah as “virtual prisoners.”34 INDIVIDUAL 8: UNKNOWN MALE, ONE OF PIAH’S SUBCHIEFS In figure one, the man on Alhandra’s right wearing a bandolier (or sash) has yet to be identified. However, Picasa paired his image with a photograph of Piah and his subchiefs taken by William Henry Jackson at the Los Pinos Agency 34 Pettit, Mountain People, 128, 129 (quotation); Matthew Brady, Ute Delegation to Washington, 1880, panel 3, Uintah County Heritage Museum, Vernal, Utah; Duncan, “Northern Utes,” 195–97; Silbernagel, Troubled Trails, 157–58.

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Guero and John (Yellow Flower) and this photo does not match those, leaving Yamanah and Ugapias as possibilities. The unique bandolier worn by this man in figure one, which could provide a clue for his identification, does not appear in any other photographs of the Utes I have studied. f

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Do newspaper reports and other historical records provide supporting evidence that these Utes could have been in Colorado Springs at the time B. H. Gurnsey took his photograph? Both the Denver Tribune and Colorado Springs Gazette reported that Ouray and his associates came through Colorado Springs and Denver around October 16, 1874, with the Indian agent H. F. Bond, the interpreter E. R. Harris, and Otto Mears. The Utes were on their way to the plains for a buffalo hunt.37 Ouray’s group then wintered in High Park, south of the village of Florissant during the winter of 1874–1875, about one hundred miles east of the eastern boundary of the Ute reservation.38 In August 1874, Ouray’s supporters and those of his subchiefs had been at the Los Pinos Agency, on the reservation, where William Henry Jackson photographed Chipeta for the first time on August 19, 1874.39

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Figure 7. Charley Alhandra, from a group photograph taken in 1880. —

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in August 1874.35 The Denver Indian agent, James B. Thompson, regularly mentioned Guero, Yamanah, John, and Ungapias as some of Piah’s petty chiefs.36 Other photos exist of 35 Pettit, Mountain People, 78. 36 J. B. Thompson to F. A. Walker, January 2, 1872 and March 4, 1872, Colorado Superintendency records, roll 202, NARA.

After greeting tourists and hunters in Middle Park during the late summer of 1874, Colorow and his followers joined Ouray’s group for the October buffalo hunt.40 Thus, the photograph analyzed in this article (fig. 1) appears to have been taken during the first two weeks of October of 1874. Perhaps it earned the Utes some extra cash for their stay in Colorado Springs and Denver. It is hoped that publishing the proper identity of the people in Gurnsey’s 1874 photograph will 37 “Two Great Chiefs,” Colorado Springs Gazette via the Denver Tribune, October 18, 1874. 38 Atlanta Georgia Thompson, Daughter of a Pioneer (Portland, OR: Binford and Mort, 1990), 18. 39 Cynthia S. Becker, Chipeta, Ute Peacemaker (Palmer Lake, CO: Filter Press, 2008), 28. On that same visit Jackson took the photograph of Piah and his subchiefs in front of a teepee, from which the thumbnail for individual 8 was created. 40 Pueblo Colorado Daily Chieftain via Denver Tribune, August 20, 1872; Denver Daily Times, October 10, 1874.


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correct the inaccurate identification of the man in the front row as Colorow, as well as other errors found throughout the historical literature. This was my first attempt to use Picasa’s face recognition software to identify images of previously unrecognized or misidentified Northern Utes, with the goal of making the history of the Ute tribe more complete. The Picasa tool results in much more accurate face identification than previous methods. I encourage archivists and researchers at all levels to incorporate similar techniques in their protocols to properly identify photographs in their collections. The use of the Picasa face recognition tool—the application of technology to historical research—has opened many doors to understanding who was who among the Ute people in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

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Beth Simmons, who teaches at local Denver colleges, earned a Ph.D. in 2008, focusing on Colorado family history. She has authored and co-authored several books about Colorado history. She wishes to thank Janet Cuch, Harlan Unrau, Charles A. Billey, Coi Drummond, Melissa VanOtterloo, Gina Rappaport, and Heather Shannon.

WEB EXTRA See history.utah.gov/ute-images for additional early Utah photographs and available identifying information.


HIGHWAY 89 DIGITAL COLLECTIONS J IM

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316 Roads are an integral part of the American experience. They connect people in a literal sense, but they also help weave narratives and human culture across time and space. Highway 89 is one such road. In its long march from the U.S.– Canadian border in Montana to its historic terminus at the U.S.–Mexican border at Nogales, Highway 89 transports its travelers through a distinctive slice of America. It is essential to Utah state tourism, chambers of commerce, and state and regional historians, as well as to those who live along its route. However, due to geographic and sometimes cultural distances, the complete story of U.S. 89 has yet to be told.1

Montana. Highway 89 has long served as a vital artery of western tourism as it passes through (or runs adjacent to) seven national parks: Saguaro, Grand Canyon, Zion, Bryce Canyon, Grand Teton, Yellowstone, and Glacier. It is little wonder that University of Wisconsin geographer Thomas R. Vale has described U.S. 89 as “a cross section of the West.”2

U.S. 89 has hardly received the nostalgic attention given to other fabled American thoroughfares, such as Route 66 or the Lincoln Highway, and yet it too can help unfold the complex history of the American West. Traveling from high mountains to low desert, it passes through five states: Arizona, Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, and

The Highway 89 Digital Collections initiative seeks to illuminate the history that has occurred along this road. Conceived and created through a collaborative effort among special collections and archives in Utah and northern Arizona, the project currently includes representatives from Utah State University, Weber State University, the University of Utah, LDS Church History Library, Utah State Archives and Records Service, Salt Lake County Archives, Brigham Young University, Southern Utah University, and Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, Arizona.

1 Portions of this piece originally appeared on the Highway 89 project website, www.highway89.org, and are used with permission here.

2 Thomas R. Vale and Geraldine R. Vale, Western Images, Western Landscape: Travels along U.S. 89 (Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 1989).


Utah State Department of Highways, “Welcome to Panguitch” road sign, Garfield County. —

Today, virtual travelers exploring the Highway 89 Digital Collections website (www.highway89.org) will find more than 1,200 images and documents, many of which have been grouped into exhibits that convey different aspects of the historic Highway 89 narrative. Online road trippers can expect to find: An exhibit on roadside architecture focused on documenting the many buildings—such as diners, motels, and gas stations—that were a product of the road by which they were built. Others, such as residences, grocery stores, and movie theaters, served the community more than the passerby and also receive the attention they deserve. An exhibit providing a sampling of historic signs and billboards that were a common sight along the roadside. Signs control traffic, give directions, draw attention to businesses, and advertise products or places. Such displays often help define a highway’s identity as much as the landscape, cars, or pavement. Over the years, High-

An exhibit showcasing photographs that document the Thistle Flood Disaster of 1983 and 1984. Thistle, originally the name of a town, became a term used to describe a massive mudslide that created a natural dam across the Spanish Fork River and destroyed the town of Thistle, located on U.S. 89. Several government agencies and construction workers joined Utah Department of Transportation workers in response to the Thistle slide, working tirelessly to reroute railroad lines, as well as U.S. 89 itself. This exhibit documents the disaster and subsequent reconstruction, as well as photographs of Thistle before the disaster. As these exhibits demonstrate, the Highway 89 Digital Collections serves as an important platform for all types of users, from the avid historian to the citizen with a general interest in looking at historic materials that help tell the story of what came before. Join us and watch the digital highway grow mile by mile. We look forward to seeing you on the Highway 89 Digital Collections route!

Jim Kichas is a certified archivist for the Utah State Archives and Records Service. He holds a master’s degree in the Environmental Humanities from the University of Utah.

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way 89 has boasted thousands of signs, from painted plywood advertising national parks to flashy neon directing motorists to all manner of services along the route. This exhibit includes examples of such signs, many of which were taken down long ago but are nevertheless an important part of the highway’s history.

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The institutional members of the Highway 89 project have developed an online aggregator and exhibit space that brings together stories and images of life along U.S. 89. Still in its early stages, the project seeks to gather existing images, texts, and oral histories from various special collections and archives that are related to Highway 89, while simultaneously serving as a means to seek out new, relevant collections for potential preservation and digitization. Through online geospatial identification applications, the eventual goal is to maintain a dynamic, collaborative space where members of the public can augment the information supplied by regional institutions with their knowledge.

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BOOK REVIEWS

COWBOY APOSTLE:

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The Diaries of Anthony W. Ivins, 1875–1932

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Salt Lake City: Signature Books, 2013. xli + 689. Cloth, $125

Anthony W. Ivins (1852–1934) was a lot of things: cowboy, explorer, rancher, actor, husband, father, Indian agent, attorney, mayor, legislator, businessman, colonizer, and ardent Democrat, as well as an LDS (Mormon) mission president in Mexico, apostle, and First Presidency member. His diaries can’t and don’t cover any of this activity very deeply. But they do give the reader a fuller understanding of the breadth of Ivins’s work and, more importantly, of the cultures and times that he influenced and that influenced him. For this we owe a large debt of gratitude to the editor, Elizabeth Anderson. She has painstakingly transcribed, proofread, and annotated the diaries—the originals housed at the Utah State Historical Society. The volume includes a helpful introduction, maps and photos, a transcription of Ivins’s Record Book of Marriages, his son Grant Ivins’s essay on “Polygamy in Mexico,” and—for an unexplained reason—the 1896 remarks of U.S. Representative Clarence E. Allen of Utah on Mormon polygamy. Ivins’s work as leader of the Mexican colonies forms the heart of the book. In Mexico, he bought land and surveyed extensively for settlements. He arranged for roads, water, and telephone lines. He worked with the Mexican government, sometimes smoothly and sometimes in frustration: in 1898 the constant “annoyances,” “disapointments [sic],” and “humiliation” from officials so aggravated him that he announced his readiness to enlist if the United States went to war (193). He formed friendships with powerful men, such as military leader Emilio Kosterlitzky, whom he con-

strained from killing an innocent young man (185–86). He prospected for minerals, inspected mines, and visited widely scattered congregations, organizing them, speaking to them, and managing internal conflicts. In all of these endeavors, he traveled widely by rail or horse—camping or, if sleeping in hotels, often tormented by bedbugs. And, of course, he married couples who came to Mexico to form polygamous unions away from the reach of U.S. law. Unfortunately, the diaries don’t shed much light on post-Manifesto polygamy or even on Ivins’s thoughts about it. He simply doesn’t mention polygamy as such but only notes encounters and marriages in passing. Lovers of the land can appreciate the sections detailing an exploring trip to Mexico—on assignment from the LDS church—when Ivins was a young man. In addition, accounts of ranching on the Arizona Strip and in Utah, with references to such places as House Rock Valley, Kane Springs, Pipe Springs, and Mount Trumbull, and Ivins’s numerous accounts of traveling, hunting, and camping give a sense of how closely he was connected to land. More maps and more detail in the maps would have greatly enhanced these geographical aspects. The diaries also cover his early years in community life and politics in St. George, Utah, and his later years as a high LDS church official. As he grew older, however, his diary entries tended to focus on the content of meetings, which he detailed to a surprising extent—even noting in some cases the number of minutes occupied by each speaker. Ironically, part of his duty as an apostle was to investigate Mormons who had married plural wives in violation of the 1904 Second Manifesto. Throughout, the editor is careful to guide the reader and make the reading journey as comfortable as possible. She translates various bureaucratic Spanish words; provides additional information taken from journals where


Even though such questions remain unanswered and the diaries don’t offer much insight on Ivins’s inner life, they are invaluable for the light they do shed. They reveal him as a man of energy and intelligence—a remarkable man by any standard, living in remarkable times. —

K RISTEN

Salt Lake City

IV E RS E N

Drama, Decadence, and Dissipation along Ogden’s Rowdiest Road

Twenty-Fifth Street—just as a large portion of Ogden itself—exists because of the railroad. With the first trains coming into the city on March 8, 1869, the history and fate of the street became intertwined with that of the railroad. Holley argues that Ogden in the nineteenth century was not unlike other western towns except for the contentious religious divide between Mormons and “gentiles.” The legendary vice of Twenty-Fifth Street had its roots during this period. Unfortunately, in the first few chapters, the tone at times borders on hokey, as Holley uses phrases like “you could scarcely toss an egg . . . without hitting a bootlegger or speakeasy” (12), “canoodling” for sex, “Sam was a goner,” and “gun-toting men” (31), which detract from significant history to be gleaned from Holley’s research. Prostitution played a heavy role in Twenty-Fifth Street’s history. Holley details the famous Belle London’s power over not just her houses of ill repute but also over law enforce-

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In 25th Street Confidential: Drama, Decadence, and Dissipation along Ogden’s Rowdiest Road, Val Holley acknowledges the difficulty of documenting the history of a subject largely enshrouded in legend. Using a wide range of primary sources, including Sanborn maps, archival documents, photographs, mug shots, and oral histories, Holley presents a history of Twenty-Fifth Street just as compelling as the legends. The book lives up to its subtitle, and readers will find a historical basis to some of the Twenty-fifth Street legends while others are discredited. This work of local history offers a sound illustration of themes, trends, and events that dominated the country as a whole from the nineteenth century to the present day.

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Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 2013. xiv + 202. Paper, $24.95

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Again, the diaries do not reveal the whole man. Letters, sermons, other writings, and accounts by others fill in parts of the picture missing from this volume. But what was Ivins thinking as he wrote these particular diaries? What did the endeavor of so carefully keeping a record mean to him? Why was it so important to mention every deer he killed—and then neglect to discuss what happened when he attended the National Conservation Committee meeting in Washington, DC (428–29)? Why didn’t he describe the outcomes of a southern Utah tour he gave to a high-ranking senator, congressmen, government officials, and a Los Angeles Times reporter (599–600)? And why did he detail the murder of an Apache family by Mormons but make no comment on the morality of the situation (254–55)?

25th street confidential:

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Ivins annotated his diaries; and gives extensive information on places, people, context, and historical events. There are a few inevitable missteps in such a large project. For instance, Edward Snow is called the stepbrother of Ivins’s wife, Elizabeth Snow (he was her halfbrother—and Ivins’s important ally in the Democratic Party, for that matter). In many instances, chapter titles are confusing in that they describe only a tiny slice of the contents, and the introduction includes a letter written to Ivins that has no apparent relevance to this project—about a dream describing Jesus Christ. I found a couple of holes in the index that made me wonder how complete it is.

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ment, the justice system, and the city of Ogden. One of the most interesting aspects of the book is how long prostitution was actually accepted and tolerated. In the 1930s, houses of prostitution paid a monthly charge to police. The city in turn used that money in part to fund the Ogden City Health Department’s venereal disease clinic. The city required all prostitutes to report weekly to the clinic for an examination; individual prostitutes were given an allowance by madams or pimps to cover the charge. (This vice–law partnership is detailed in Twenty-Fifth Street’s history of alcohol and gambling as well.) Holley does an admirable job of tracing prostitution’s evolution, from Belle London as proprietor of her own brothel in the late nineteenth century to the next century’s best known Ogden madam, Rosetta Davie. According to Holley, from 1948 to 1955 Davie “spent more time in courtrooms or jail than she did as a free woman”—a reflection of increasing intolerance and the stigma of prostitution in the twentieth century (99). Holley addresses the legends of Twenty-Fifth Street by attempting to allow historical sources and even folklore to speak for themselves. If there is something missing from Holley’s book, it is attention to the association of Ogden residents to the street. The drama of Twenty-Fifth Street political intrigue and corruption, prostitution, gambling, and liquor is well known by Ogden residents, as well as to those familiar with local history. Less explored is the relationship between Twenty-Fifth Street and the rest of the city. How did Ogden residents view and associate with the street? How did the vice of the street affect residents, religious organizations, schools, and other businesses? Holley refers to—but does not expound on— Ogden mayor Harman Ward Peery’s opinion of Twenty-Fifth Street as a place for “ordinary people,” those individuals neither associated with the Old West’s railroad crowd or Utah’s elite (71). While the everyday citizen is occasionally referenced or quoted, Holley’s focus on the “drama, decadence, and dissipation” of Twenty-Fifth Street ignores the simple, everyday reality surrounding it. Holley’s concluding chapter details the historic preservation and the repurposing of many of downtown Ogden’s historic locations in recent

decades. Currently, Ogden City uses Twenty-Fifth Street as its gathering place for holiday events, the summer farmers’ and art market, and the annual Ogden Restaurant Week. While the development of commercial entertainment and dining, the remodeling of the Ogden LDS Temple, and UTA’s Frontrunner rail traffic add a modern look to a historic city, the dedication of the Ogden City Landmarks Commission ensures history endures on Twenty-Fifth Street. —

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Utah Division of State History

A Frontier Life: Jacob Hamblin, Explorer and Indian Missionary BY

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Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press 2013, xix + 642 Cloth, $44.95

In his well-organized, insightful, and thoroughly researched biography of Jacob Hamblin, Todd Compton presents Hamblin in the context of the nineteenth-century West, Mormonism, and the Indian frontier of the Great Basin and the American Southwest. Hamblin emerges as a rough-hewn frontiersman who through his extensive travels and interactions with Native Americans made a significant contribution to the exploration of the West and a salutary influence on Mormon-Indian relations. Hamblin (1819–1886) has been the subject of numerous earlier biographies and other published research, and yet it has remained for Compton to flesh out his life, motives, explorations, and particularly his relationship with Paiutes, Navajos, Hopis, Utes, and other American Indian groups of the Southwest. Compton’s book is divided into thirty-five chapters, which generally are organized on a chronological and geographical basis. The biography includes 127 pages of notes that are valuable and of great interest to the careful reader looking for scholarly references and


Five other important Hamblin relationships emerge and are well described through the book. These form much of the significance of his life. The first is Hamblin’s relationship with his wives and children; the second, his relationship with John D. Lee, the Mountain Meadows Massacre, and Lee’s Ferry; the third, Hamblin’s kinship and relationship with Indians; the fourth, his relationship and association with his fellow Mormon Indian missionaries; and the fifth, his involvement with and commitment to Mormonism and Brigham Young. Compton explores Hamblin’s relationship to Lee, often cooperative and sometimes combative—as when Hamblin delivered testimony at Lee’s second trial—in detail. Hamblin was a devoted follower of Young, though he did not always hesitate to suggest that Mormon colonization was destroying Indian culture and civilization. Compton deftly paints Hamblin as

a friend, confidante, brother, missionary, and advocate to and for Indians from his early days in Tooele to his last days in Arizona and New Mexico.

R I C H A R D

W.

SA D LE R

Conflict in Canyon Country BY

J E D E D I A H

S.

V O L . I

Roads in the wilderness:

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Weber State University

4

This book is a most valuable historical contribution. A second or paperback edition would be improved by maps drawn particularly to help identify Hamblin’s wide-ranging travels and explorations.

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additional insight into the life and times of Hamblin. The extensive nature of the notes demonstrates the wide-ranging research on which the book is based. The notes also contain numerous instances of Compton’s agreement and disagreement with sources. Of great value in understanding Hamblin are the appendices. The first, entitled “Jacob Hamblin’s Families,” notes his marriages, wives, and children. Listed in this section are Hamblin’s Caucasian wives and children and his Indian wives and his adopted Indian children. The second appendix, three pages in length, is a chronological listing of Jacob Hamblin’s trips to and across the Colorado River. This brief summary involves the period 1858 to 1877 and includes thirty-six trips with specific dates and the historical and geographical significance of each trip noted. Hamblin’s explorations were often guided by Brigham Young’s requests and instructions and laid the foundation in different ways for Mormon settlement in southern Utah, Arizona and New Mexico, and Mexico. The listing, along with complementary materials in the chapters dealing with each expedition or trip, places Jacob Hamblin in the forefront of explorers of the Southwest and arm-in-arm with John Wesley Powell and his explorations in the area and on the Colorado River. This summary is a significant historical contribution. Compton details well Hamblin’s relationships with Powell and others who explored this area.

R O G E R S

Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 2013. 252 pp. Paper, $24.95

It’s certainly no secret that Utah and the federal government have a rocky relationship over the issue of public lands. This decades-long conflict recently manifested itself in H.B. 148, passed by the state legislature in 2012, which demanded that the U.S. Congress relinquish control of some 30 million acres of federal land within Utah’s borders. Against impassioned protests from environmentalists, Governor Gary Herbert signed the legislation, declaring, “We feel the federal government has failed to keep its promises to the state of Utah. We feel it’s time we do something about that.”1 Given the ongoing litigation over H.B. 148, the publication of Roads in the Wilderness is certainly timely. In it, Jedediah S. Rogers argues that roads are a central issue driving the debate over public land in Utah.2 This is particularly true for wilderness designation, a process in 1 Dennis Romboy, “Herbert Signs Legislation Demanding Feds Give Public Land to Utah,” KSL, March 24, 2012, accessed July 21, 2014, http://www.ksl.com/?sid=19706081. 2 Rogers joined the staff of Utah Historical Quarterly after Roads in the Wilderness was assigned for review.

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which decisions for or against recognition often hinge on the existence and condition of roads. But federal policies stemming from a one-sentence statute in the 1866 mining laws, R.S. 2477, and the conditions of its subsequent repeal in 1976, fail to define exactly what constitutes a road. Because of this ambiguity, Rogers argues we must first understand the history and cultural underpinnings of roads in order to resolve bitter disputes over public land in Utah and the West.

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To this end, Rogers examines a series of people and events that highlight conflicting world views in Utah’s remote canyon country. In chapter one, he uses the story of the 1879–80 Hole-in-the-Rock expedition to demonstrate the centrality of roads in Mormon lore, where they often represent the pioneer conquest of nature. Alternatively, Rogers tells the story of Clyde Kluckhohn, a young adventurer whose travels through Utah’s unsettled territory in the 1920s convinced him that such isolated areas should not to be etched with roads but simply visited and departed. Building from these early viewpoints, chapter two explores the rivalry between wilderness advocate Edward Abbey and the local official and booster Calvin Black over the construction of Utah State Highway 95, which was completed in 1976. Chapters three through seven explore still more recent conflicts—largely between environmentalists and local residents and county officials—over roads in areas including Negro Bill Canyon, Waterpocket Fold, Book Cliffs, Grand Staircase–Escalante, and Arch Canyon. Despite the contentious nature of these stories, Rogers largely manages to remain above the entrenched positions that define them. In the final chapter, he admonishes locals who “fail to recognize that mining and industrial development erode not just the land they hold dear but also the culture and traditions that make the region unique.” As for conservationists, Rogers feels they “could do better to articulate a vision that recognizes the culture, identity, and needs of rural people instead of treating these as collateral damage in the quest to preserve nature” (183). Perhaps, Rogers suggests, the only way forward is to cast off this old dichotomy of environmentalists versus locals in favor of something new. “We are in the West an eclectic mix,”

he writes, “and we ought to create a landscape to match the culture, just as we need a society to match the scenery” (185). While Rogers’s optimism seems hard to swallow given the current political climate, his argument is compelling; there is certainly a great deal to learn about the wilderness movement through the study of road development. Though a few more maps might help clarify his retelling of the conflicts in Utah’s canyon country, Rogers excels in his use of primary sources from government offices and archives across the state. Roads in the Wilderness is sure to engage environmental historians, environmentalists, engineers, and anyone with a connection to southern Utah’s wild backcountry, and all are sure to share Rogers’s hope: “We can yet work for a middle way” (185). —

C LI N T

P U MP H R E Y

Utah State University

The Shoshoneans: The People of the Basin-Plateau BY

E DWA R D

MAT T H E W

D O R N ;

E D I T E D

BY

H O F E R

1966: Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 2013. 176 pp. Paper, $34.95

Edward Dorn and Leroy Lucas traveled across the Great Basin in 1965 to record their findings and feelings about the Shoshoneans—primarily Ute, Paiute, Goshute, and Shoshone—whom they encountered. Under contract to produce this volume, the two men—one a poet, the other an African American photographer—experienced a journey that took them through parts of Utah, Idaho, and Nevada. It was the mid1960s, with the Vietnam War gathering steam, the Civil Rights movement well underway, and appreciation of free-thinking views against the “establishment” de rigueur. Exalting the mundane and challenging the status quo to turn the staid American society of the 1950s on its head brought recognition. Dorn, as part and product of this era, wrote with an edge that found dis-


One might argue that because Dorn was a writer, not an anthropologist or historian, his expression of thought, feeling, and eloquence should be the measure of his work. Fair enough. There are occasional passages that soar above the mundane while much is purely functional. For a poet—supposedly the master of the finely tuned phrase—he does a lot of patching of others’ material into his work and does not build toward a tightly knit conclusion other than that problems abound in Indian country. For example, he ends his essay with a lengthy selection from Clyde Warrior—a Ponca Indian advocating for his people—with rhetoric that fits nicely into Dorn’s view of Native America: “We are among the poor, the powerless, the inexperienced, and the inarticulate” (93). This is his

R O B E R T

S.

MC P H E R SO N

BY

MI C H A E L

H I T T MA N

Reno: University of Nevada Press, 2013. xii + 494 pp. Paper, $58.50

This encyclopedic treatment of the indigenous peoples who occupied the Great Basin from prehistoric times to the present is an ambitious though not exhaustive work completed by Michael Hittman, professor emeritus of anthropology at Long Island University. The Ute, Shoshone, Goshute, and Paiute tribes and bands and their various groups and subgroups have been, perhaps, the most overlooked portion of Native people in American Indian scholarship. Great Basin Indians: An Encyclopedic History incorporates “the fruits of several generations of scholarship as well as recent discoveries made possible by new areas of scientific inquiry” (xi). The encyclopedic format enables Hittman to detail anthropological arguments, historical events, brief biographies of key individuals, intertribal relations, and many other topics that would overwhelm a monographic approach. Hittman’s best entries include anthropological issues such as his treatment of the prehistoric people of the Great Basin and the spread and impact of the Ghost Dance and Peyote religion on the Great Basin tribes; however, as he is a professor of anthropology this strength is hardly surprising. He tackles some stimulating and provocative scholarly debates such as Numic Spread and the date of Sacajawea’s death. Citing the arguments and evidence advanced by

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This book is an expanded (from 85 to 166 pages), edited (with additional letters, interviews, and writings) version accompanied by three sections of Lucas’s black-and-white photos taken at the time. Close to a half century later, Shoshoneans again speaks to the public, but what does it say, and is it relevant? In keeping with Dorn’s approach, let’s be honest. His understanding of the historical and cultural context of these people was minimal, based primarily on time spent reading the works of anthropologists and historians to gain a base knowledge. He included passages of others’ writings in the text, but his own original understanding came from personal observation; the book sports less than two dozen endnotes, only half of which are about the people under discussion. On a number of occasions he records positive experiences and impressions, some bordering on the spiritual. But often he finds those he meets immersed in poverty, alcohol, and social problems without hope, as degraded as those found in historical accounts that called them “diggers.” He describes people clinging low to the rungs of the human ladder. Dorn is at times sympathetic and other times brutally honest—whether writing about Native Americans or members of the dominant society. Again, the reader must realize that the author’s main focus is based in his brief experience and observations, not in honed understanding.

finding, painted on a canvas he takes from his observations. It is his way to look at the Shoshoneans and the conclusion he wants the reader to accept. The result: a starkly real, unsympathetic portrait of a people sketched by an outsider with limited knowledge.

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satisfaction in much of what he experienced. It was all a matter of finding the “truth,” which was not often pretty.

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several differing historians, Hittman presents his inferences to these issues by historiographical examination rather than drawing his own conclusions.

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Less impressive were his treatment of wars and raids—the Walker War, the Mountain Meadows Massacre, the Meeker Massacre, and the removal of Utes from Colorado—and his treatment of the acquisition of horses and their impact on Ute and Shoshone culture and livelihood. Adoption of an equestrian culture was one of the most significant aspects of Ute and Shoshone history in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and perhaps the most telling difference between those tribes and their non-equestrian cousins—the Goshutes, Paiutes, and Western Shoshone. Though adequate, these entries demonstrated far from the same level of scholarship apparent in other areas of the encyclopedia. This reviewer found some omissions and inclusions noteworthy. For example, in the entry on Ute Chief Wakara/ Walker, Hittman makes no comment on Wakara’s supposed links to gold mines (but details that his name might have meanings relating to gold in the Ute language), his baptism into the LDS church, or his urging of Mormons to settle in San Pete Valley, while his treatment of Chief Blackhawk was much more detailed in some of these same areas. The author makes some small errors such as saying that John D. Lee was hanged for his role in the Mountain Meadow Massacre and that the Sundance originated with the Cheyenne or Kiowa when the Sioux/Lakota also claim that distinction (181, 301). The author makes little mention of the Comanche’s origin as a Shoshone people within the Great Basin. But these are small distractions and do not seriously harm the credibility of the study. Great Basin Indians is a crucial addition to the library of serious scholars of Native peoples from the Great Basin and surrounding regions. The fifty-five page bibliography, which includes primary and secondary sources, is impressive and a worthwhile resource for researchers of all levels. —

JOH N

D.

BA RTO N

Utah State University, Uintah Basin


BOOK NOTICES

Eileen Hallett Stone, a history columnist for the Salt Lake Tribune, has in this volume collected fifty-eight articles into a single source of lesser-known stories from Utah’s history. The articles highlight the state’s diversity— both in bringing out the lives of immigrant and minority populations and in covering a wide variety of ground from the ordinary to the influential and the extraordinary. Most stories are centered on individuals who confront intriguing circumstances and, as a whole, they create a picture that is both intimate and wide ranging.

Lost apostles: Forgotten Members of Mormonism’s Original Quorum of Twelve BY H .

WILLIAM M ICH AEL

S H E PA RD

A N D

MA RQ UA RDT

Salt Lake City: Signature Books, 2013. 426 pp. Paper, $35.95

This collective biography of six Mormon apostles called by Joseph Smith in 1835 documents the tumultuous early years of the Mormon faith. Shepard and Marquardt exhume the lives and deeds of six men not generally recognized in Mormon history and so save them from relative obscurity. Thomas B. Marsh, William E. McLellin, Luke S. Johnson, William B. Smith, John F. Boynton, and Lyman E. Johnson each clashed and, at least temporarily, severed ties with Mormonism’s founder. Through the details of the apostles’ lives and substantial contributions to the Restoration movement, the authors reveal the dynamic of institutional authority and reli-

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The un-driving of the golden spike

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Charleston, NC: History Press, 2013. 206 pp. Paper, $19.99

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B Y J E F F T E R R Y, T H O R N T O N H . WAITE, AND JAMES J. REISDORFF

David City, NE: South Platte Press, 2013. 80 pp. Paper, $24.95

This volume, containing seventy-five photographs, details the “un-driving of the Golden Spike” ceremony at Promontory Summit on September 8, 1942, seventy-three years after completion of the transcontinental railroad. Construction of the Lucin Cutoff across the north end of the Great Salt Lake in the early twentieth century directly bypassed a portion of the 1869 route, relegating the track across Promontory Summit as a branch line. In the decades leading up to the “un-driving” ceremony the branch line was mostly abandoned, with only occasional commercial and passenger use. This volume briefly details the history of the Promontory line, the events of the 1942 ceremony officially marking the line’s end, and the subsequent commemorations and reenactments at the site of the Golden Spike. David H. Mann, a Utah farm magazine journalist, took a series of photographs of the 1942 event; many of these, along with other photos at Promontory Summit, are reproduced in this thin volume.

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gious dissent in early Mormonism. In the process, they also introduce readers to the broader world of Mormonism in Jacksonian America.

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hidden history of utah

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CURL UP

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THIS WINTER WITH

UTAH HISTORICAL QUARTERLY You or your gift recipient will receive four issues of Utah Historical Quarterly, the official journal of Utah history. Subscription rates: Senior Citizen/Student Individual Sustaining Patron Sponsor Life

$25.00 $30.00 $40.00 $60.00 $100.00 $500.00

Contact Lisa Buckmiller at (801) 245-7231 or lbuckmiller@utah.gov IMAGE: Children at play in the snow, Salt Lake City, Utah. Utah State Historical Society.


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Bailey, James, educator, 158 Bair, John, deputy U.S. district attorney, 276 Baker, Elizabeth Ward, confessed murderer, 273–87, 276 Baker Mountain, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 54–56, 55 (map) Baker, Samuel, convicted murderer, 273–87, 275 Baker, Sarah, LDS immigrant, 274 Ballard, Henry, Cache Valley settler, 8 Banks, James Alva, LDS missionary, 139, 143 Bannocks, performing at Ogden Mardi Gras, 202–03, 205, 206 Barlocker, William A., turkey grower, 127–28 Bartch, George W., judge, 29 Barton, Joseph and Nancy, Iron County residents, 282 Bayless, H. D., Iron County justice of the peace, 273 Bean, George W., LDS missionary to Native Americans, 257–58 Beanham, William M., military, 197, 207 Bear Lake, and road construction, 8–10 Bear River, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 47–48, 49 (map) Beatty, Theodore, Salt Lake City health director, 103 Beaver, Utah, 166 Beehive Machine Company, 127 Behan, John Henry, float designer,

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197, 205 Bellevue, Utah, 232 Bennion, David, Vernon water master, 299, 302–03 Bennion, Israel, Vernon settler, and water rights administration, 289, 294– 305, 296 Benson, Ezra Taft, (1811–1869), 7 Benson, Ezra Taft, LDS leader and Secretary of Agriculture, 127 Benson, Lee, sports writer, 139 Bentley, Mary Ann Mansfield, early Utah settler, 229 Berryman, Jack H., wildlife management specialist, 13–15, 13 Bettridge Creek, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 61 Beyer, Herbert, turkey marketer, 122 Big Cottonwood Canyon, and water access, 97, 99 Big Pass, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 59 (map), 62–63 Black Ridge, 200–233, 220 (map), 233 (map) Black, William, sports writer, 139 Black, Jeremiah S., U.S. attorney general, 279 Blackham, Ralph, turkey grower, 124, 125 Blake, James, physician, 48 Bleak, James, historian, 225 Blood, Henry H., governor, and film Brigham Young, 74 Bond, H. F., Indian agent, 314 Bohn, George, Federal Highway Administration administrator, 18 Bonneville Speedway, 189 Boreman, Jacob S., educator, 165 Boundary lines, geographical, 185–93

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Adams, Daniel E., and Sons Hatchery, 123 Adams, J. Arza, turkey grower, 118, 127 Ainge, Danny, athlete, 140 Albert, John J., military engineer, 44 Albertanti, Frank, sports writer, 142–45 Alderson, George, conservationist, 16 All Hallows Academy, Salt Lake City, 164–65 Allen, Rufus, LDS missionary, 225, 226 Alta Club, and Theodore Roosevelt, 37 Alvera, Rebecca, Salt Lake City resident, 112 American Association of State Highway Officials, 10–11 American Holding Company, St. George turkey processing plant, 129 American Pioneer Trails Association, 235 American Poultry Association, 117–18 Anderson, Jake, turkey grower, 124 Anderson, Minerva, Ogden resident, 203 Anderson, Wendell, Utah State University professor, 20 Anderson, Will, Ogden resident, 205 Anterro, Ute leader, 267 Arapeen, Ute leader, 262, 268 Archambault, August, explorer, 48 Ash Creek Canyon, 200–233, 220 (map), 231 Astor, Mary, actress, 68, 70, 71, 72 Athletics, and Mormon public relations, 140–42; and overt

religiosity, 142; and Word of Wisdom, 141, 146–47 Avenues, Salt Lake City neighborhood, 98–99, 106, 109, 113

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Brace, Charles Loring, children’s aid reformer, 285 Brady, Matthew, photographer, 313 Brand, Harry, film publicist, 69 Brandt, Eugene, photographer, 308 Bridewell, Kate, singer, 197, 206 Brigham Young Academy, Provo, 165, 166 Brigham Young (film), Salt Lake City premiere, 65–76, 66–67, 69–74; reviews, 75 Brigham Young High School, and Alma Richards, 135, 145, 148 Brigham Young University Hall of Fame, 134 Bromfield, Louis, writer, 68, 74 Broom Mountain, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 58–59 Brown, Benjamin, turkey grower, 120–22, 121, 131 Brown, Everett C., athletic director, 136 Brown, Owen, Logan resident, 12 Brown, Persis, educator, 159 Brown, Thomas, early Utah settler, 225, 257 Buchanan, James, U.S. president, 191, 279; orders troops to Utah, 264–66, 269 Budge, William, newspaper correspondent, 8 Bulger, John, Washington, D.C. writer, 13 Bullen, Charles, Utah state senator, 18 Burr, David H., U.S. surveyor, 279 Burton, C. Taylor, Utah State Department official, 14

C Cache Chamber of Commerce, and road construction, 21 Cache County, 6, 8

Cache Valley, 4-6, 7, 13 Camp Floyd, establishment, 270 Cannon, Angus, LDS leader, 232 Cannon, Frank, editor and politician, 27, 200, 206 Cannon, John Q., editor, 200–201, 203, 205 Cannon, Martha Hughes, 108 Carradine, John, actor, 68 Carrington, Albert, mapmaker, 46, 64 Carroll, Ada, companion of William Drummond, 277 Cass, Lewis, U.S. Secretary of State, on Mormon–Native American relations, 264, 269 Cater, L. G., turkey grower, 118 Cedar City, Utah, 158 Cereghino, Giovanno, Salt Lake City resident, 103 Cesspooch, Larry, Ute historian, 193 CH2M Hill, consulting firm, 19, 21–23 Chamberlain, William G., photographer, 311 Charley Alhandra, Ute, 308, 313, 314 Chase, Daryl, academic, 14 Children, abuse and maltreatment of, 282–87 Chinatown, in Salt Lake City, 100–102, 109 (map) Chipeta, Ute, 309, 314 Choke Cherry Canyon, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 51 Christian, Lulu, educator, 164 Church of Jesus Christ of Latterday Saints, the, and athletics, 139; communitarianism, 292–93; and education, 151–52, 155–63, 165–66; and gender roles, 156–57; and federal Indian agents, 251–71; and landscape stewardship,

189; Perpetual Emigration Fund, 275, 276, 280; public relations, 140–42; and relations with Native Americans, 251–71; and Salt Lake City Olympic bid, 140, 149; and social assimilation, 140, 149; and water rights administration, 289–305 Citizens for a Safe and Scenic Canyon, 26 Citizens for the Protection of Logan Canyon, 18, 21, 22, 23, 26 City Creek Canyon, and water access, 93–95, 98, 99 Clafin, Jennie, educator, 163 Clarion, Utah, settlement, 120 Clark, Clarence D., Wyoming senator, 29 Clark, J. Reuben, LDS leader, and film Brigham Young, 69 Clark, William, explorer and U.S. officer, 261 Clayton, T. W., Utah resident, 205 Cobb Peak, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 63 Cole, Lulu, 164 Coleman, Prime, early Utah settler, 226 Colorow, Ute, 308–11, 308, 310, 313 Colorow’s son, Ute, 308, 312, 313 Common schools, 152–53, 155 Communitarianism, 230 Comstock, Boyd, Olympic coach, 136 Conrad, Alan, Logan resident, 12 Consumerism, and road construction projects, 12–13 Cook, Ida, educator, 160–61, 162 Cook, Mary, educator, 160–161, 162 Cornell University, and Alma Richards, 138, 143, 145 Cornaby, Samuel, educator, 158, 160


Dalby, William, Salt Lake City health commissioner, 103 Darnell, Linda, actress, 65, 68, 69, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76 Day, Henry R., U.S. Indian agent, 254 Decker, Zachariah B., Parowan resident, 280–81 Delicate Arch, 188–89 Democratic Party, 27 Denver, James W., U.S. Commissioner of Indian Affairs, 266–67 Deseret, as place name, 190–91 Deseret, State of, 252–53; and water administration, 292–93 Deseret Iron Mining Company, 235 Deseret News, newspaper, 95, 96, 106, 114; reporting on Alma Richards, 139, 142–43, 145, 147, 150 Desert Land Act (1877), 293 Development, southern Utah, in library collections, 234 Dilworth, Mary Jane, educator, 155 Disabilities, and children, 282–83 Dixie, early travel, 200–233 Dolphin Island, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 57

E Eastern Slope, Salt Lake City neighborhood, 97–98, 105, 106, 109, 113 Eastside, Salt Lake City neighborhood, 103 Education, in the early West, 151–66; and gender, 151–66; and the LDS church, 151–52, 154–63, 165–66; and religion, 151–52, 162–66 Edmonds, Clyde C., banker, 122, 131 Edwards, William, Logan city mayor, 7 Eisenhower, Dwight D., U.S. president, and turkey, 127, 128 Ellerbeck, Thomas, engineer, 94 Elliott, John M., U.S. congressman from Kentucky, 260

F Farm Credit System, 123, 131 Federal Highway Administration, 18, 19, 20, 22, 24 Fillmore, Millard, U.S. president, on federal officials in Utah, 253, 254 Fillmore, Utah, Whitehouse trial site, 276–77 Fisher, S. G., Indian agent, 202 Fisher, Vardis, writer, 68 Flint, Steve, environmental activist, 25 Florez, John, Salt Lake City resident, 112 Floyd, J. Whitney, Utah State University dean, 13–14 Floyd, Craig, Laketown resident, 23 Fong, Jack, Chinese immigrant, 101–102 Foote, R. S., educator, 163 Forney, Jacob, superintendent of Indian affairs, 264, 269–70

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Emerson, Phillip, Utah district judge, 294 Environmentalism, conservationism, 4, 16, 26; preservationism, 5, 11–12, 21 Environmental degradation, deforestation, 6, 7; overgrazing, 6, 7, 34–35; water quality, 7 Erickson, Ephraim E., educator, 166 Ericson, A. P., Vernon settler, 295–98, 302 Ethnic enclaves, Salt Lake City, 111, 109 (map), 112 Escalante, Silvestre Vélez de, explorer, 222–23, 233 (map) Evans, Frank, lawyer, 121 Evanston, Illinois, and 1912 Olympic trials, 135

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Dominguez, Atanasio, explorer, 222, 233 (map) Donner Spring, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 59 (map), 61, 62, 63 Doremus, Abraham, engineer, 107–108 Dove Creek, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 55–56, 55 (map), 57 Downey, George, 99 Driggs, Howard R., historian, 234–35 Drummond, William W., Utah territorial judge, 277, 279–80 Dry Bench Committee, water rights organization, 98–99 Duffin, Isaac, early Utah settler, 230 Dusenberry, Warren, educator, 156 Dusenberry, Wilson H., educator, 156, 163

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Cotton Creek, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 55 Covington, Robert D., Texas settler, 228 Crater Island, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 59, 60–61, 62, 63–64 Cumming, Alfred, Utah territorial governor, 264, 270 Curlew Valley, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 53

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G Gamble, Lulu, educator, 164 Garden City, and road construction, 10, 19, 20–21, 22 Garland, Utah, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 48 Garn, Daniel, LDS leader, 274, 275 Gender roles, and education, 151–66 Gerry, Elbridge, child cruelty activist, 285 Giant Joshua, The, novel, 221 Gilbert, Grove Karl, geologist, 189 Glasmann, William, Ogden politician and newspaperman, 29, 37–38, 40, 41 Goates, Les, sports editor, 143 Goodwin, Charles C., newspaper editor, 96 Goodard, George, entrepreneur, 115 Goshutes, and relations with LDS church, 267 Gosling, Mary J., children’s aid reformer, 285 Graf, Theodore, turkey grower, 116 Graff, E. J., turkey grower, 118–19 Grant, Heber J., LDS leader, and film Brigham Young, 69–70, 74, 75–76 Grauman, Sid, theater entrepreneur, 65–66 Grazing rights, 125 Great Salt Lake, as tourist

attraction, 187; geographical survey, 43–64, 43 (map), 49 (map), 51 (map), 55 (map), 63 (map); and sewage, 106–107 Greene, Louisa Lula, educator, 156 Grix, Arthur E., sports writer, 148–49 Groves, Elisha H., early Utah settler, 228 Gunnison, John W., military engineer, 44, 46, 642, 62; death of, 258 Gunnison Valley Canning Company, 120 Gurnsey, Byron H., Colorado photographer, 308, 314 Gustin, Amos, educator, 158

H Hafen, Ernest, turkey grower, 116 Hamblin, Jacob, explorer, 225–27 Hamblin, Oscar, early Utah settler, 227 Hampton Ford, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 47–48, 49 (map) Hand, M. A., educator, 163 Hansel Mountains, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 52 (map), 53 Hansen, Lorenzo, Logan mayor, 9 Hansen, Walter, inventor, 126–27 Hardy, Augustus, LDS missionary, 226 Harms, Herman, chemist, 105–106 Harris, E. R., Indian interpreter, 314 Harvey, Robert Smith, 199 Harvey, William Hope, and Ogden Mardi Gras, 195–207, 198 Haskell, Thales, LDS missionary, 226 Hastings Road, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 56, 59 (map), 62

Hatch, Abe, railroad worker, 29 Hatch, Ira, LDS missionary, 226 Hathaway, Henry, film director, 68 Hayes, Arthur B., editor, 202 Helm, William T., Utah State University professor, 16–17, 18 Henry’s Fork, Utah, 159 Herald Journal, Logan newspaper, 4, 12, 25 Hereford, Robert, educator, 159 Heywood, Martha Spence, educator, 158, 159 Hicks, George, early Utah settler, 221–22 Higgenbotham, Simon, educator, 159 Hillam, Silas, educator, 158 Hogup Mountains, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 55 (map), 56–58, 59 (map), 62 Hogup Ridge, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 59 (map), 62, 63 Holeman, Jacob, U.S. Indian agent, 253–54, 265 Homer School, Salt Lake City, 151 Hopkins, Charles, Cedar City judge, 275 Horine, George, Olympic athlete, 137, 143, 144 Horne, Richard S., educator, 161 Hoyt, Ellen Meeks, educator, 159 Howard, Mimmie, Salt Lake City resident, 102 Howell, Joseph, U.S. congressman, 7 Hull Lake, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 50, 51 (map) Huntington, Dimick, LDS missionary to Utes and Goshutes, 267 Hurt, Garland, U.S. Indian agent, 258–60, 259, 263, 265


J Jackson, William Henry, photographer, 230, 235, 311, 314 Jagger, Dean, actor, 68, 69, 70, 72, 74, 75 Jenkins, David Abbott, Salt Lake City mayor, 72, 73, 74 Jennings, William, store owner, 115 Jensen, Andrew, LDS leader, 158 Jex, Eliza Goodson, LDS immigrant, 274 John, David, educator, 158 Johnson, William D., educator, 159 Jolley, Marion, turkey grower, 124 Jones, Joseph, turkey grower, 119 Jones, Kumen, traveler in southern Utah, 231 Jordan Canal, 95–96, 99, 102 Jordan River, 94, 95,102–3, 106, 107 Joseph, Thomas, educator, 166 Joyce, Brenda, actress, 69, 70, 71, 72, 74, 76 Judd, Mary Minerva Dart, early Utah settler, 226–27, 227 Judd, Zadok Knapp, early Utah settler, 223, 226, 227

L Lambourne, Alfred, landscape painter, 188 Larsen, Wilford, turkey grower, 116 LaVerkin, Utah, 118–19 LaVerkin Feed and Hardware Company, 119

Logan Commercial-Boosters Club (later Logan Chamber of Commerce), 9 Love, Andrew, educator, 158 Ludden, Virginia W., 163 Luján, Don Pedro León, New Mexican human trafficker, 260 Luke, George, educator, 166 Lukez, Rudy, Sierra Club member, 19 Lundberg, F. O., turkey grower, 118 Lung, Jim, Chinese immigrant, 101 Lyon, Tom, Cache County resident, 23

4 N O . I 8 2

Lea, Luke, U.S. Commissioner of Indian Affairs, 253 Leah, Margaret, educator, 158–59 Lee, John D., early Utah settler, 223–24, 223, 225, 226, 228, 229–30 Levy, David L., designer, 199 Lewis, David, LDS missionary, 225–26 Lewis, Tarlton, Parowan LDS bishop, 281 Liesche, Hans, Olympic athlete, 137–38, 142, 148–49 Light of the World performance, 141 Lippman, Joseph, journalist, 200 Little Mountain, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 50, 51 (map) Lloyd, Robert, road commissioner, 230 Logan Canyon, and road construction, 4–26, 4, 9 (map), Logan Canyon Coalition, 24–25 Logan Cañon Road Company, 8–9 Logan Chamber of Commerce, and road construction, 10

V O L .

Kanab, Utah, 159 Kane, Elizabeth Wood, wife of Thomas Kane, 231–32, 232 Kane, Thomas, military officer, 231–32 Kanosh, Utah, 262 Katsanevas, Andy, Salt Lake City resident, 111–12 Kearns, Jennie, wife of Thomas Kearns, 36 Kearns, Thomas, senator, 29–30, 33, 36, 40, 99; family, 99; mansion, 36 Kellet, Rex, turkey grower, 124 Kelly, Nancy, actress, 70, 71, 72 Kelting, Joseph A., Utah territorial district attorney, 276 Kelton, Utah, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 53–54, 55 (map) Kendrick, Floyd, Mrs., Providence resident, 13 Kennedy, Olin A., Ogden journalist, 199, 200, 203–04, 206 Kiesel, Frederick J., Ogden mayor, 197, 201 Kimball, Heber C., LDS leader, 155, 225; and turkeys as insect control, 15 Kinney, John, Utah territorial judge, 279, on LDS–Native American relations, 265 Knight, Samuel, LDS missionary, 226

I

K

Immigrants, Italian, to Odgen, 210–12, 214, 215 Improvement Era, LDS publication, 146–47 Indian Appropriations Act (1857), 263 Indian Creek, Utah, 116 Interfaith conflict, at Odgen Mardi Gras, 197, 200, 201–05 Irons, William, turkey grower, 124 Iverson, Floyd, forester, 15

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Maeser, Karl G., educator, 160, 165 Mahan, Alfred Thayer, and Theodore Roosevelt, 40 Malad River, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 47–48, 49 (map), 51 Manley, Mark, educator, 159 Mann, Horace, educator, 153 Manti, Utah, 158 Manypenny, George, U.S. Commissioner of Indian Affairs, 259, 264 Mapmaking, and Utah, 185–93 Mardi Gras, and Ogden, 195–207, 207; in New Orleans, 204 Marsh, Henry, Olympic athlete, 140–41 Martineau, James H., LDS official, 228–29, 273–74, 275, 276–77, 280–81, 280 Marysville, Utah, 163–64 Mass, Phil, settler of Henry’s Fork, 159 Maughan, Peter, Cache Valley settler, 5, 6, 8; Maughan’s Fort, 6 Mayne, Clifton E., speculator, 199–200, 205 McAllister, Ward, New York socialite, 200 McArthur, Daniel D., road commissioner, 230 McClelland, Mary L, educator, 163 McClelland, Robert, U.S. Secretary of the Interior, 260 McHouston Springs, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 61, 62 McKay, David O., and film Brigham Young, 69 McKay, Gunn, Utah congressman, 18 McKean, Theodore, water superintendent, 93 Mears, Otto, 314

Meeker, Ezra, ox-team pioneer, 235 Meridians, cartographic, 192–93 Merrill, Joseph F., LDS church leader, 147 Methodist Women’s Missionary Society, 163, 164 Metzgar, Harry H., turkey businessman, 121 Midway, Utah, 159 Mildon, Luke, engineer, 26 Military Academy, Ogden, 165 Miller, Hack, sports editor, 139, 143 Miller, Johnny, athlete, 140 Miner, Aurelius, attorney, 101 Mission schools, 152, 163–65 Mix, Charles E., U.S. Commissioner of Indian Affairs, 260, 265, 269 Monument Peak, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 52 (map), 53, Moon, Hugh, early Utah settler, 229 Moody, William Henry, Secretary of the Navy, 35–36, 40 Morgan Brothers, turkey processing plant, 129 Mork, Elida, educator, 164 Morley, Isaac, LDS leader, 158 Mormon Culture Region, 187, 189 Moroni Feed Company, 123–24, 127, 129, 130, 131 Morris, Charles W., accused child abuser, 284 Mount Timpanogos, origin of the myth, 191 Mountain Meadows Massacre, 267 Mountains, and regional identity, 187–88 Mousalimas, Mary, Salt Lake City resident, 112 Mowry, Sylvester, U.S. army officer, 258, 261–62

Murdock Academy, Beaver, 166; and Alma Richards, 134, 135 Murray, Ken, 70, 71, 72, 75 Murphy, Dale, athlete, 140 Murphy, Mike, track coach, 136–137 Murphy, Sam, railroad fireman, 29

N National Board of Popular Education, 154 National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, 16–17 National Tavern, in Odgen, 209–219, 213 National Turkey Federation, 125, 127, 131 Native Americans, and relations with LDS church, 251–71 Navajo Nation, and the Four Corners area, 186, 187 Nephi, Manti, and Richfield Poultry Association, 120 Nephi, Utah, 158 New Jersey Academy, Logan, 164 New York Evening Mail, newspaper, 142–44 New West Education Commission, 163 Newfoundland Mountains, and their appearance on early maps, 46–47, 58–59, 59 (map), 62–64, 63 (map) Norbest, turkey growers association, 122, 124, 131 North Bench Committee, water rights organization, 100 Northwest Turkey Growers Association, 122 Northern Utah Environmental Advisory Committee, 17, 25–26 Noyes, Abbie Parish, 163


P Pack, John, educator, 161 Paiutes, 222–23, 224, 225, 226; in library collections, 234; and relations with LDS church, 253, 256, 257, 262 Paiute Reservoir and Irrigation System, 119 Palmer, Earl, athlete, 136 Palmer, William R., historian, 234–35 Pappas, Tom, Ogden resident, 215 Parashont, Tom, Cedar City resident, 234 Parent School, Salt Lake City, 161 Pardoe, T. Earl, drama professor, 139

Q Quenche, Ute, 308, 311

4 N O . I 8 2

Poultry Day, American Fork, Utah, 119 Powatch, Ute, 308, 311–12, 312 Powell, John Wesley, on water use, 290 Power, Tyrone, actor, 65, 68, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75 Pratt, Louisa Barnes, early Mormon, 160 Pratt, Orson, LDS leader, 160, 163; and arrival in Utah, 192, 193 Pratt, Parley P., LDS leader, and exploration of southern Utah, 223; and LDS proselytizing to Native peoples, 256 Preuss, Charles, mapmaker, 46, 64 Preshaw, Samuel M., judge, 201–02 Price, Vincent, actor, 68 Promontory Range, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 49–51 Prostitution, and brothels in Ogden, 211, 212, 217–19; “Mary Belle,” Ogden madam, 211, 212, 217–19 Provo, Utah, 158 Public health reform, in Salt Lake City, 92–113; effect of religion, race, and class, 93, 95–113 Public Works Administration, 218 Pulley, Adolphus, turkey grower, 119 Pulley, Andrew W., turkey grower, 119 Pulley, John, turkey grower, 119 Pulley, Mary, Poultry Day queen, 119

V O L .

Park City, Utah, and Chinese laundries, 102 Park, John R., educator, 161, 165 Parley’s Canyon, 96–97, 96 Parowan High School, 134 Parowan, Utah, 223; and Alma Richards, 133, 140, 146, 148; and Whitehouse murder, 274–278, 283 Parson, Jack B., Company, contractor, 12 Pearson, William, educator, 159 Peery, Harman, Ogden mayor, 218 Pehrson, Emil, Vernon settler, 299–301, 303 (map) Pehrson, Erick Johan, Vernon LDS leader, 295–98, 297, 302–05 Pendery, Bruce, Cache County resident, 21 Pendleton, Calvin C., Parowan doctor, 277–78, 281 Penrose, Charles, newspaper editor, 106 Picasa face recognition software, 307–15 Pickles, Thomas, shipping magnate, 197 Pilot Mountains, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 47, 59, 63 Pilot Peak, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 57, 59 (map), 61, 62 Plant, Ross, Utah State Road Commission member, 17 Point Lookout Mountain, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 49 (map) Point of the Mountain, 188, 189 Pollock, Samuel, early Mormon settler, 229 Pooppe, Ute, 308, 313 Potter, Albert, Bureau of Forestry agent, 6, 7

I

O’Hanion, R. J., humane society activist, 284–85 Ogden Academy, 163 Ogden Poultry, 129 Ogden, Utah, 158, 163; in the 1930s, 207, 209–19; 211, 219; city hall building, 218; high school building, 218; and Mardi Gras, 195–207, 196; and rivalry with Salt Lake City, 198, 202 Oler, Wesley, Olympic athlete, 136 Olympic Games, 1912 (Stockholm), 133–38, 144, 148; 2002 (Salt Lake City), 140–41; Salt Lake City bid for, 139–40, 149 Ontario Canyon School, Park City, 164 Ord, Thomas, educator, 158 Orderville, Utah, 159 Osborn, Erma, educator, 164 Ouray, Ute, 308–310, 308, 309, 314 Outdoor recreation, and road construction, 11, 14

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Racism, 217, 219 Raft River Mountains, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 53 Ramsey, Emma, singer, 33 Ratoff, Gregory, director, 71, 72, 74 Rauzi, Pete, Ogden resident, 214 Rectangular Survey, 186, 192–93 Reed, Henry A., lobbyist, 101 Redford, Robert, and Sundance Resort, 192 Redmond, Thomas, Utah tourist, 115–16 Regional identity, 187–88 Republican Party, 27 Rich County, and road construction, 8–9, 23 Richards, Alma, Olympic athlete, 133–50, 133, 135, 138; folklore of Olympic prayer, 139, 140–50 Richards, Ralph T., physician, 92 Richardson, Albert, speculator, 200 Richmond, Utah, 6 Ring, Bernice Peaslee, educator, 163 Ring, Hiram Waldo, educator, 163 Rivard, Louis, explorer, 48 Road building, in early Utah, 224 (chart), 228–33 Roberts, Eugene, track coach, 145 Robinson, Doug, sports writer, 139 Rocky Mountain Carnival, 195– 207 Rogers, Jean, actress, 72 Romero, Caesar, actor, 69, 72, 74 Rose, Stephen B., Indian agent, 253 Roosevelt, Theodore, 27; and conservationism, 28, 34–35; on industrialization, 39; on irrigation policy, 34–35,

38–39; on foreign relations, 39–40, 41–42; on frontier growth, 34–35; visiting Utah, 27–42, 30, 33, 38, 39, 41 Rowland Hall school, Salt Lake City, 163 Rudd, Charles, turkey grower, 119, 122 Rush Valley, 288 (map), 295

S Saloons, in Ogden, 209–10 Salt Creek, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 49 (map), 51 (map) Salt Lake City, premiere of film Brigham Young, 65–76; sanitation, 92–113; Olympic bid, 139–40; and LDS Church, 140, 149; and rivalry with Ogden, 198, 202 Salt Lake City Chamber of Commerce, and water access, 97, 106, 110 Salt Lake City Council, and water rights, 98–99, 101–102 Salt Lake City Real Estate Association, 103 Salt Lake Collegiate Institute, 164 Salt Lake Herald, newspaper, 108,109, 110, 113 Salt Lake Telegram, newspaper, 110 Salt Lake Tribune, newspaper, 94, 96, 101, 102, 106, 108 Salt Spring, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 49–50, 49 (map), 51 (map) Salt Wells Flat, on early route around Great Salt Lake, 51–53, 52 (map) Salvation Army band, 213, 216–17 Sanders, Bill, turkey grower, 118–19 Sanders, Ervil, turkey grower, 118–19

Sanders, Moroni, turkey grower, 118–19 Sanitation, in Salt Lake City, 92–113; and population growth, 93, 96, 104–5, 110–11 Sanpete Country, Utah, and turkey production, 117, 120, 123, 124–25, 128, 130 Santa Clara, Utah, 116, 222, 226 Savage, Charles, photographer, 230 School of the Good Shephard, Ogden, 163 Scorup-Somervi