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Utah Historical Quarterly Current Issue


Volume 84, Number 2 (Spring 2016 Issue):


Published since 1928, the Utah Historical Quarterly is the state’s premier history journal and the source for reliable, engaging Utah history. 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


“The historian sets himself a dangerous, even an impossible, task,” writes the historian Daniel J. Boorstin. Far removed from the event being examined, the historian must piece together stories using imperfect sources. Rather than uncover history, she creates it from little more than relics—fragments—of the past. The sources she uses may or may not represent a sample of the experiences people really had. If “survival [of sources] is chancy, whimsical and unpredictable,” as Boorstin argues, assessing the provenance, representation, and significance of sources is that much more essential. The historian cannot perfectly succeed in telling history “as it really happened,” as the nineteenth-century German historian Leopold Von Ranke suggested could be done. Yet by evaluating, scrutinizing, and questioning remaining evidence, she can hope to capture the essence of lives and experiences once lived.

The essays in this issue represent fine examples of current practitioners working with varied sources. Archaeological artifacts as historical sources, for instance, are rarely represented in the pages of UHQ. However, our lead article shows how artifacts have given us a more complete understanding of past logging operations in the Uinta Mountains. Decaying cabins, flumes, and crib structures remain as tangible reminders of this unique chapter in Utah and western history. These and many other artifacts reveal much about how tie cutters for the railroad industry worked, and they also give sometimes surprising insight into the social history of the men, women, and children who lived in logging camps. This article is also a reminder that sometimes local actions—in this case, the harvesting of trees in a forgotten corner of the state—served national purposes.

Through court proceedings, press coverage, and personal interviews, our second piece reconstructs a story that is both sensational and familiar—how, in 1908, a teenage boy from a respected family murdered a pregnant young woman with whom he was keeping company on the sly. This piece of intrigue occurred in what might seem the most unlikely place: Orderville, Utah, whose residents had lived communally in the 1870s and 1880s. Yet this case involved more than the relationship between two teenagers. A scaffolding of social expectations, history, and law surrounded the young people and played some part—however minimal—in Alvin Heaton Jr.’s decision to murder Mary Stevens.

Our third essay brings us to a little-known episode in the life of a familiar Utah and Mormon figure, James E. Talmage. Readers see a different side to the university president and theologian—a man obsessed with scouting geologic formations in the peaks and canyons of southern Utah and northern Arizona. If he did not have the precision or expertise of his contemporaries Clarence Dutton and Grove Karl Gilbert, who both authored geological monographs, Talmage had the determination to fulfill the expedition’s objectives. This essay, based primarily on Talmage’s record of his travels, is a fine example of narrative-driven history tuned to the finer details.

Newspaper accounts and especially oral histories reconstruct a different kind of encounter. The next article examines the cultural outcomes of a “peaceful invasion” of southeastern Utah by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC). Of course, that New Deal program brought economic and environmental changes to Utah, but its members—the “Cs”—also participated in a host of cultural exchanges with the people of San Juan and Grand counties. Young men from gritty eastern cities taught boxing, baseball, and the Lindy Hop to the people of Blanding and Monticello, even as they learned about American Indian culture, small-town entertainment, and the ways of local girls.

The spring issue concludes with an homage to an unlikely landmark, a horse-barn-turned-art-studio on the Utah State University campus. In this short piece, Emily Wheeler recounts a few of the memories associated with this structure, from its raising in 1919 to its razing in 2015, showing how multifaceted and deep the memory of a place can be.


ARTICLES

“Wooden Beds for Wooden Heads”: Railroad Tie Cutting in the Uinta Mountains, 1867–1938
By Christopher W. Merritt

A Most Horrible Crime: The 1908 Murder of Mary Stevens in Orderville, Utah
By Roger Blomquist

James E. Talmage and the 1895 Deseret Museum Expedition to Southern Utah
By Craig S. Smith

Turning “the Picture a Whole Lot”: The CCC Invasion of Southeastern Utah, 1933–1942
By Robert S. McPherson and Jesse Grover

Barn Raising
By Emily Brooksby Wheeler


BOOK REVIEWS

Jessie L. Embry and Brian Q. Cannon, eds., Immigrants in the Far West: Historical Identities and Experiences. Reviewed by Timothy Dean Draper

Will Bagley, South Pass: Gateway to a Continent. Reviewed by Patricia Ann Owens

Kenneth R. Beesley and Dirk Elzinga, An 1860 English-Hopi Vocabulary Written in the Deseret Alphabet. Reviewed by Robert S. McPherson

Dave Hall, A Faded Legacy: Amy Brown Lyman and Mormon Women’s Activism, 1872–1959. Reviewed by Jennifer Rust

Richard Francaviglia, The Mapmakers of New Zion: A Cartographic History of Mormonism. Reviewed by Paul F. Starrs


BOOK NOTICES

Tim Sullivan, Ways to the West: How Getting Out of Our Cars Is Reclaiming America’s Frontier

Randall Balmer and Jana Riess, eds., Mormonism and American Politics

 

Experience Utah Archaeology

Calendar of Events

During May, you can find lectures, activities and more events listed here! Contact Chris Merritt (cmerritt@utah.gov) if you would like to add an event in your area!

Poster Contest

Congratulations to Joel Boomgarden for his winning poster! Contact Deb Miller if you would like to receive copies, contact Deb Miller (damiller@utah.gov).

ArchyPoster2016

Open House

The first Saturday in May is our annual Open House. This year it is at Salt Lake Community College’s South City Campus. Saturday, May 7th from 12-3pm. Mark your calendars and check back here for more information!

Past Winners

Over 25 years of poster contest winners can be found here.

Resources

Teaching resources and information about Archaeology & Preservation in the state of Utah are located here.

Petroglyphs_P2

 

Encore

Our Encore series features reprints of classic works published by the Utah State Historical Society. These essays originally appearing in the Utah Historical Quarterly and other publications give a new generation of readers access to engaging historical accounts and histories of the state.

To support research and writing in Utah history and to receive your own copy of the Utah Historical Quarterly, the state’s premier history journal, please consider becoming a member of the Society.

To comment on our Encore series, please contact UHQ co-managing editor Jedediah Rogers at jedediahrogers@utah.gov or 801.245.7209.


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First published in the fall 1981 issue of the Utah Historical Quarterly, an early account of a winter Brimhall Timpanogosascent of Mt. Timpanogos. Two local men reveled in the challenge and danger of scaling the mount’s face in the snow. After reaching the peak, they slide down the glacier on the mount’s east side, continue to Stewart Ranch (now the location of Robert Redford’s Sundance Resort), and camp at a small resort called Wildwood in Provo Canyon. Accompanying the account are photographs taken by Brimhall and his companion LeGrand Hardy, a 3-D interactive map showing their approximate route, and contemporary photographs of the summit of Timp in winter, courtesy of John Judd.


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Echo City Pulpit Rock Union Pacific Railroad 1In an award-winning essay, Robert S. Mikkelsen paints a colorful portrait of life in his hometown, a key refueling railroad stop for locomotives traveling between Ogden, Utah, and Evanston, Wyoming. He revisits childhood memories of playing outdoor games on soot-packed platforms, getting in trouble with track torpedoes instead of fireworks, building forts out of railroad ties, and passing the time “celebrity watching” at the station. Overall, his account provides an interesting insider look at how the Union Pacific steam engine station defined Echo’s cultural, social, and economic experience for nearly a century.


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This account by Josiah F. Gibbs is characteristic of the first-person accounts frequently published From left to right: Charles Kelly, Josiah F. Gibbs, Frank Beckwith - at Marysvale, Utah. Josiah F. Gibbs authored a book on the Mountain Meadows Massacre. Frank Beckwith was the editor of the Millard County Chronicle, an archeologist, geologist, and authority on Lake Bonneville. Charles Kelly was a printer, artist, author, historian, the first superintendent of Capitol Reef National Park. in some of the first issues of the Utah Historical Quarterly describing events in Utah’s frontier history. Gibbs’ remembrances are one man’s recollections of a complex and sometimes strained relationship between Mormon white settlers and the Indian peoples who had long inhabited the Great Basin. Note that some language in this piece–for example, “savage,” “redmen”–are dated and offensive, and simply reflect Gibbs sensibilities at the time of his writing.

Mignon Richmond

Mignon Richmond #1a

Courtesy of the Mignon Richmond family

Mignon Richmond was an activist and community leader that left her mark on Salt Lake City, yet her name is fading from the minds of Salt Lake’s current residents. Utah State history has dedicated space to tell her legacy through photographs, artifacts, and even her voice. Come to the Rio Grande and learn the story of Mignon and pass it on.

Rio Grande Depot
300 S Rio Grande St (450 W)
Salt Lake City, Utah

Listen to audio excerpts from Mignon Richmond’s Oral History and find more information on our historical spotlight display.

 

Veterans Utah History Project

ww2-vet-photo

Where were you when WWII ended?

The Division of State History and the Utah Department of Veterans & Military Affairs have joined together on the Veterans Utah History Project.

Whether you are a WWII veteran and want to document and share your experiences and memories or you want to volunteer to interview a WWII veteran there are opportunities to participate.

Visit the Utah Department of Veterans & Military Affairs website to learn more and get involved to collect, document and archive this important part of our history.

Historic Salt Lake City Apartments of the Early Twentieth Century

Text and Photographs by Lisa-Michele Church

Salt Lake City contains many beautiful examples of early twentieth-century apartment buildings constructed to house a growing urban population. With whimsical names such as Piccadilly, Peter Pan or Waldorf, these buildings beckoned to Utahns interested in a new approach to residential life. Apartments became places of beginnings and endings for the young couple starting out, a single woman with her first job, an immigrant family new to the area, or a widow no longer able to care for her home. Apartments were a stage on which the rest of your life came into view. As one resident put it, “You moved in with a suitcase, and out with a truck.”

The buildings were designed with style and architectural flair. Residents could enjoy amenities such as electric stoves, night watchmen, elegant entryways, and, for some, Murphy “disappearing” beds. Local families, including the Coveys, Downings, and Sampsons, constructed many of the complexes. Monthly rents ranged from $30 to $50. The last of the distinctive buildings was built in the 1930s; after World War II, people preferred cozy bungalows in the suburbs.  But about half of the original 180 apartment houses are still standing as a vivid illustration of the boldness with which Salt Lake City entered the twentieth century.

The following photo gallery features a few of these buildings. Download a self-guided walking tour brochure to see the historic apartments buildings at your own pace.


1 Pauline

Pauline. The Pauline was built at 278 East 100 South in 1904. This is a “walk up” design where each apartment has its own entrance landing and balcony. Note the cut sandstone foundation, iron railing balconies, and brick details.

2 Woodruff

The Woodruff, located at 235 South 200 East, was built in 1908 and contained 51 units. The building advertised to “young men looking for desirable apartments close to their work.” There was a café, The building featured steam heat, hot water, telephone, gas range, a dresser, buffet, and Murphy bed. Tenants had the option of choosing the color of their walls. A night watchman and janitor were assigned to the apartment, and a café was an added amenity to residents.

3 Woodruff detail

Note the lovely lamp posts, now gone, and the bold entrance. Abraham Gross and his wife, Vera, were typical residents in the 1930s, living in unit 60 and raising their young son, Jerome. Abe and Vera were Polish immigrants; he worked as a cattle buyer. When Abe was killed tragically in a 1935 train accident, Vera and Jerome moved out and the apartment stood vacant for two years.

4 Altadena

The Altadena, at 310 South 300 East, was built in 1905 at a cost of $21,000 by the Octavius Sampson family. The Sampsons originally named it Vivian Flats but changed the name a few years later to match that of their baby daughter. Typical residents included sisters, Annette and Martha Rustad, Norwegian immigrants who worked as seamstresses in Salt Lake department stores. They lived at the Altadena for many years; neither ever married.

5 Altadena detail

The entrance doors at the Altadena are especially detailed. Both buildings feature pediments, Tuscan columns, dentillated cornices and accented cornerstones.

6 Sampson

The Sampson building is at 276 East 300 South, around the corner from the Altadena. It contained seven “walk up” units. The Altadena and Sampson Apartments are almost identical plans. Both buildings have red brick, white trim, substantial balconies, and oak doors. One luxury item was an elevator at the back of the building.

7 Elise

The Elise, at 561 East 100 South, features a massive columned entrance with decorative iron railings and balconies.

8 Elise detail

The detail on the Elise columns is striking. The building was built in 1914 and contains eight “walk up” units.

9 Hillcrest

The Hillcrest is located at 155 East First Avenue and was built in 1915. It joined other apartment buildings financed by the Covey family, including the Covey Flats (now LaFrance), Buckingham, Kensington, New Hillcrest, and Covey. All were built by W.C.A. Vissing, a popular apartment contractor of the time and member of the Covey family.

10 Buckingham

The u-shaped court of the Buckingham (241 East South Temple) is echoed in the other Covey-designed buildings. All were carefully landscaped with generous courtyards and flower beds.

11 Ruby

The Ruby, at 435 East 200 South, was built in 1912. It contains 21 “walk up” units and beautiful wood framed doors and windows. The detailed brick work is also remarkable.

12 Ruby too

One resident of the Ruby, Sadie Baldwin, worked as a dressmaker earning $720 per year in 1940. Sadie was a young widow with three children to raise.

13 Embassy

The Embassy was built at 130 South 300 East in 1926. It contains 31 units using a double-loaded corridor plan where each room opens off a central corridor, and few have balconies. This plan type was a particularly efficient use of Salt Lake City’s deep lots, and was common in the buildings built after World War I. It is currently called the Pauline Downs.

14 Embassy detail

Most early apartment buildings used bold signs to attract attention and convey style. The Embassy sign is no exception. The Embassy was built, along with two adjacent apartment buildings, by Bessie P. Downing and her husband, Hardy. Hardy was a famous tandem bike racer and boxing promoter. Bessie lived in this building and managed it until Hardy’s passing.

15 Embassy Arms

The Embassy Arms was a little fancier than the Embassy, with its French door balconies and elaborate stone entrance. It was built by the Downings next to the Embassy, at 120 South 300 East, in 1930. Note the stone “D” over the sign; it was originally named the Downing Deluxe.

16 Embassy Arms too

These French door balconies were unusual in a double loaded corridor plan. Note the brickwork and stone accents.

17 Spencer Stewart

The Spencer Stewart, at 740 East 300 South, was built in 1926 and included 29 units. It was advertised in the 1935 Salt Lake Telegram for its “three rooms, electric refrigerators and ranges, furnished or unfurnished, disappearing beds, nice large rooms, moderate rent.”

18 Stratton

The Stratton was built in 1927 as part of a building boom where at least ten new apartment buildings appeared on the downtown skyline. It is located at 49 South 400 East and features some castellation along the roofline, two balconies, and an imposing entrance.

19 Peter Pan

The Peter Pan is located at 445 East 300 South. It is notable for its tile roofs, brick detailing and lovely sign. The building was built in 1927.

20 Peter Pan detail

The name signs on the early apartment buildings were often neon and included colorful metal designs.

21 Bell Wines

The Bell Wines apartments were built in 1927 by a married couple, Hazel Bell and Stanley Wines, who combined their surnames. It is located at 530 East 100 South. The building is evocative of a southern plantation home, with a center porch and tall columns around a courtyard.

22 Bell Wines too

The building contains 30 units opening off a long hallway. One early resident, Eva Harmer, became engaged to her sweetheart, Blaine Allan, while living here in 1934. She was alarmed when she discovered she had dropped her engagement ring down the apartment’s sink. Fortunately, city water officials blocked off the pipes until the ring could be found.

23 Annie Laurie

The Annie Laurie, located at 326 East 100 South, and its sister building, the Lorna Doone, were both built in 1928 by the Bowers Investment Company at a cost of $80,000 each. The Lorna Doone has 33 units and the Annie Laurie has 30.

25 Lorna Doone

The Lorna Doone, at 320 East 100 South, shared an interior block parking lot with the other nearby apartments. Between the two sister buildings is a landscaped courtyard.

24 Lorna Doone detail

Both buildings feature elaborate gargoyles and ornaments at the entrance and on the roofline.

26 Armista

The Armista, located at 55 East 100 South, is a substantial building of stone and brick with little ornamentation. Its doorway features beautiful lamps. Herrick and Company built it with 30 units in 1927. Its name was later changed to the Waldorf Apartments. A 1927 Salt Lake Tribune ad read: “$40.00 to $42.00. One of the most modernly equipped and conveniently located apartments in the city.”

27 Piccardy

The Piccardy, at 115 South 300 East, was built in 1930. It has 40 units: five one-bedroom and five studios on each floor. It features Jacobethan styling, twisting columns at the entrance and some leaded glass windows.

28 Piccardy detail

Acanthus leaf trim and original light fixtures adorn the Piccardy entrance.

29 Los Gables

The Los Gables is one of the largest apartments of the early period with 80 units. It was built at 135 South 300 East in 1929. Note the imposing stone work and arched doorways.

30 Los Gables detail

The Los Gables also features inset stone pieces and timber accents.

31 Piccadilly

The Piccadilly is a typical double-loaded corridor plan, built in 1929 at 24 South 500 East.

32 Piccadilly detail

The doorway at the Piccadilly features the original light fixture and decorative sign.

33 Bigelow

The Bigelow apartments were built in 1930 at 223 South 400 East, containing 30 units. A 1940 ad read: “2 r[oo]m modern, lots of space, light, all electric, good service, exclusive.”

34 Premier

The Premier was built at 27 South 800 East in 1931 for $50,000. The site features an unusually large front courtyard with lush landscaping. Note the upright metal sign on the roof.

35 Premier detail

The Premier entrances have striking stone work and wrought iron gates.

36 Chateau Normandie

The Chateau Normandie, 63 South 400 East, was built in 1931. It is a rare example of a “walk up” design built at the end of this apartment era. It has stately trees and extensive timber accents.

37 Chateau Normandie detail

The windows at the Chateau Normandie are extensively decorated.

38 Eastcliff Westcliff

The East Cliff and West Cliff buildings sit together on 200 South between 400 East and 500 East. They were built in 1927–28 and originally named the Cummings apartments.

39 Mayflower

The Mayflower, at 1283 East South Temple, is one of the largest and most elegant apartment buildings of the first half of the twentieth century. Built in 1929 from a design by the architect Slack Winburn, each floor has only five 2,600-square-foot units. Arches and ivy adorn the exterior.

40 Knickerbocker

The Knickerbocker apartment building at 1280 East South Temple was built in 1911 by W.C.A. Vissing. It has a large carved cornice and massive columns with iron railing balconies.

41 Castle Heights

The Castle Heights apartment building opened in January, 1931 to great acclaim. A Salt Lake Tribune ad dated January 18, 1931, read: “Every kitchen in this ultra modern apartment house is equipped with a genuine Frigidaire unit.” It still stands at 141 East First Avenue. Note the stone work, arched entrance, and neon sign.

 

 

Utah History Podcasts

Check out our collection of audio files from various events and programs of Utah State History.

Utah StateTelephoneOperator_edge History Brown Bag Presentations

Utah State History hosts a collection of Brown Bags every year. We recently began recording these presentations so you can listen and not miss a thing.

Listen and watch a mix of brown bags presented by a mix of lay and professionals working to document history.

 


News_WagonUtah Historical Quarterly Web Extras

Early Utah Women Inventors: A Conversation with Christine Cooper-Rompato  – UHQ Summer 2015

Folklore and History: A Conversation with Steve Siporin – UHQ Spring 2015

Sounds of the Cathedral – UHQ Winter 2015

An Interview with Noel Carmack and Connell O’Donovan on the 1855 murder of Isaac Whitehouse in Parowan, Utah, and the Art of Historical Storytelling – UHQ Fall 2014


Hist.ConfSlider2015 State History Conference “Deep Roots: Many Voices”

Listen to select sessions from the 2015 State History Conference

 

Utah Historical Quarterly Web Extras

 

 

First published in 1928, the Utah Historical Quarterly, the state’s official history journal, features articles, essays, and book reviews and notices on all aspects of the Beehive State’s history. Since 2014, current issues are now accompanied by rich online supplements.

In the digital medium, we are able to do more than can be done in print: reproduce UHQ articles and essays accompanied with expanded photos, maps, and bibliographies, and publish photo galleries, primary sources, oral histories, podcast interviews, and other special features suitable for the web. See below for the current supplements and an archive of previous online content.

Click here for information on becoming a member of the Utah State Historical Society and receiving your own copy of the Utah Historical Quarterly. UHQ back issues are available online through a searchable database.

 

UHQ Spring 2016Cataract Canyon Boat Party

Tie-hacking and logging sites on the North Slope

Mary Stevens’ murder: A conversation with Roger Blomquist

Digital copy of James E. Talmage’s diary

 


 

UHQ Winter 2016

The Newsboy Walter B. Evans

Coda: Turn-of-the-Century Smallpox Vaccination

Early Utah Photographs by William Henry Jackson and Timothy H. O’Sullivan

The Great War’s Council of Defense: A Conversation with Allan Kent Powell

Ogden Canteen Log Books

Historic Salt Lake City Apartments of the Early Twentieth Century


 

2015FallUHQUHQ Fall 2015

John C. Frémont and the Mormons: A Conversation with Alexander L. Baugh

Photographs and Drawings from the Simpson Expedition, 1858-59

Susan Rhoades Neel on Earl and Pearl Douglass

Reflections on the Waterpocket Fold and Greater Capitol Reef, by Ralph Becker

Haldane “Buzz” Holmstrom on the Colorado River: A Gallery


 

2015SummerUHQ

UHQ Summer 2015

A Conversation with Marshall E. Bowen on Russian Molokans in Box Elder County, Utah

The Hill Creek Extension: A Portfolio of Primary Documents

Early Utah Women Inventors: A Conversation with Christine Cooper-Rompato

The Carol Carlisle Summer Wedding Dress Collection: A Photo Gallery

Ute and Shoshone Vocabularies


 

2015SpringUHQUHQ Spring 2015

Almon Babbitt and Early Utah Politics: A Portfolio of Documents
Introduced and transcribed by Bruce Worthen

Folklore and History: An Interview with Steve Siporin

Southeastern Utah Missile Launches

Extended Photo Gallery of the Green River Launch Complex


 

2015WinterUHQUHQ Winter 2015

UHQ Interviews: Utah Historiography
Conversations with Gary Topping on Utah Historiography and with Robert Parson on S. George Ellsworth

Charcoal Kilns: A Photo Gallery
Photos and captions by Douglas H. Page Jr.

Gallery of Female Imagery in Advertisements

Sounds of the Cathedral


 

2014FallUHQUHQ Fall 2014

Mormon and Federal Indian Policy: A Portfolio of Primary Documents

Mormon and Federal Indian Policy: A Portfolio of Primary Documents
Transcribed by Brent Rogers

An Interview with Noel Carmack and Connell O’Donovan on the 1855 murder of Isaac Whitehouse in Parowan, Utah, and the Art of Historical Storytelling

Water: Records in the Utah State Historical Society and the Utah State Archives

Ute Photographs


 

2014SummerUHQUHQ Summer 2014

Previous UHQ Cover Designs

The Making and Unmaking of Utah
By Jared Farmer

Race with the Sun
By Carl Kuntze

Memoirs: An Annotated Bibliography
Compiled by Caitlin Shirts