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Utah Historical Quarterly Current Issue


Volume 83, Number 1 (Winter Issue):


Utah’s history is more diverse than you think! Check out the Winter 2015 issue of the Utah Historical Quarterly to learn more about where Utah has been, and how we’ve come to where we are today. Join the Historical Society for your own copy .

Each issue of the Utah Historical Quarterly is accompanied with rich web supplements that introduce readers to sources, photos, interviews, and other engaging material. These “extras” are located at history.utah.gov/uhqextras.

WEB EXTRAS: See here 


IN THIS ISSUE


Winter-2015-UHQ-CoverGOLDWEBARTICLES

Neither Poet nor Prophet: S. George Ellsworth and the History of Utah
By Robert E. Parson

Charcoal and Its Role in Utah Mining History
By Douglas H. Page Jr., Sarah E. Page, Thomas J. Straka, and Nathan D. Thomas

The Chocolate Dippers’ Strike of 1910
By Kathryn L. MacKay

Tooele, Touch Typing, and the Catholic Saint Marguerite-Marie Alacoque
By Emma Louise Penrod

Transformation of the Cathedral: An Interview with Gregory Glenn
By Gary Topping


Charcoal burners, “chocolate girls,” Catholic priests, and a champion typist: these are a few of the characters who populate this issue of UtahHistorical Quarterly. That contemporary historians consider such individuals worthy of study stems, in part, from the new social history of the 1960s and beyond. This school of thought challenged the “consensus” history that had emphasized common American values and character over ethnic, racial, and class distinctions. In the words of the historian Alice Kessler-Harris, the new social history documented “social relationships, social structure, everyday life, private life, social solidarities, social conflicts, social classes, and social groups.”[1] In short, over the years, it has provided a more complete view of the past.

S. George Ellsworth, the subject of our first article, was a leading practitioner of this “new” history. Ellsworth obtained graduate training under Herbert Eugene Bolton at the University of California– Berkeley and spent his entire career at Utah State University. A bibliophile, he made important contributions to bolstering USU’s collection of what he called Utahnalia. Unlike the better-known Leonard Arrington, with whom he shared an intimate but at times strained relationship, Ellsworth was not a prolific scholar. Detailed and thoughtful, he labored fifteen years on Utah’s Heritage, a seventh-grade history textbook. Robert Parson guides readers in an intimate introduction to a master teacher and gifted, if at time conflicted, scholar who merits broader recognition for his contributions to Utah history. The other articles in this issue reflect Ellsworth’s dedication to telling lesser-known stories.

With our second article, a team of foresters and archaeologists have set out to remind Utahns of the place of charcoal in their state’s mining history. For many reasons, charcoal was a preferred source of heat in smelting; it was, therefore, critical to the mining industry. From whence, then, did smelters obtain the charcoal they needed to operate? The authors of this article have answered this question by documenting the remains of charcoal production sites throughout the state, as well as sites in Colorado and Wyoming associated with Utah mining. They are careful, too, to remind readers of the devastation caused by the charcoal industry: in the lives of the poorly paid, poorly housed charcoal burners; for the Native Americans whose food source the industry decimated; and, not least, in the forests altered by heavy, careless logging.

The back cover of this issue features a commercial photograph of chocolate boxes from the J. G. McDonald Company. The message presented by these boxes is overwhelmingly one of beauty, elegance, and, above all, femininity. As our third article establishes, such a message belied the realities of life for the young women who worked at McDonald’s confectionery. In 1910, fourteen of those women formed a “Chocolate Dippers’ Union” and struck for higher wages. These women—all of whom were younger than twenty-five and all of whom lost their jobs—acted bravely and with few precedents close at hand. Though only the names of the Chocolate Dippers’ Union’s officers survive, that fragment of history provides a fascinating glimpse into their world: all five of the officers came from the homes of working-class English immigrants, converts to Mormonism.

The last two pieces in this issue remind us of Utah’s deep Catholic roots. Emma Louise Penrod probes into the naming of Tooele’s Saint Marguerite Catholic Church, skeptical that a church in a Utah town with almost no French roots derived its name from the French Saint Marguerite-Marie Alacoque. She was right. The Marguerite in question was in fact a young Irish American girl, the niece of Frank McGurrin—a celebrated typist who helped popularize the QWERTY keyboard and nurtured the Catholic Church in Tooele. The article segues into a discussion of ethnicity and religion in small mining towns, like those close to Tooele, and the odd connection of the Catholic parish to the origins of modern touch typing. The final piece features a delightful conversation between the historian Gary Topping and Gregory Glenn, the founder and director of the Madeleine Choir School in Salt Lake City.

[1] Alice Kessler-Harris, “Social History,” in The New American History, ed. Eric Foner (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1997), 232.


BOOK REVIEWS

David M. Wrobel, Global West, American Frontier: Travel, Empire, and Exceptionalism from Manifest Destiny to the Great Depression. Reviewed by Michael Homer

Claudine Chalmers, Chronicling the West for Harper’s: Coast to Coast with Frenzeny and Tavernier in 1873–1874. Reviewed by Noel A. Carmack

Samuel Holiday and Robert S. McPherson, Under the Eagle: Samuel Holiday, Navajo Code Talker. Reviewed by Robert S. Voyles

Roger L. Nichols, Warrior Nations: The United States and Indian Peoples. Reviewed by Patricia Ann Owens

Norman Rosenblatt, Dance with the Bear: The Joe Rosenblatt Story. Reviewed by Allan Kent Powell

Merina Smith, Revelation, Resistance, and Mormon Polygamy: The Introduction and Implementation of the Principle, 1830–1853. Reviewed by Todd M. Compton

BOOK NOTICES

Mike Mackey, Protecting Wyoming’s Share: Frank Emerson and the Colorado River Compact

Aaron McArthur, St. Thomas, Nevada: A History Uncovered

Evelyn I. Funda, Weeds: A Farm Daughter’s Lament