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Utah Historical Quarterly Special Events

The Utah State Historical Society sponsors a regular series of lectures highlighting the work and scholarship of the Utah Historical Quarterly, the state’s official history journal. These lectures feature the latest work of writers and historians on significant, varied topics in Utah history. All members of the public are cordially invited. Please check back on this webpage for an updated listing of upcoming events and access recordings of our past lectures.

Upcoming Events

Fall 2016

Thursday, November 10, 3–5 p.m.
Rio Grande Depot, Lecture Room
300 South Rio Grande Str., Salt Lake City

40This UHQ special event will look at four instances in the 20th century when people from Utah or perceptions of the state became part of a broader cultural landscape. 

Kenneth L. Cannon II
Mormons on Broadway, 1914 Style

Myrna Layton
The Music and Philanthropy of Dean Eggertsen

Sandra Dawn Brimhall
“When You Wish Upon a Star”: The Musical Legacy of Utah Composer Leigh Harline

Michael Hicks
The Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Columbia in the Sixties


Event Archives with Audio/Video

Spring 2016


Utah Designed: History, Landscape, and the Urban Built Environment  — A Symposium 

Save the Date:
Friday, May 13, 2016, 9–4 p.m.
Salt Lake City Public Library
Nancy Tessman Auditorium
210 East 400 South
We invite practitioners of history, historic preservation, urban planning, land and water management, and other related fields to join us for a free symposium about the Greater Salt Lake landscape and built environment.
This one day, interdisciplinary event aims to examine the historical dimensions, design elements, power relationships, and legal and bureaucratic scaffolding that have shaped Utah’s capital city and urban corridor.
We will consider the role of ideas, laws, bureaucracies, and intellectual designs on urban design and transportation; the impact of architecture and design on political, cultural, racial, and other power structures; the design, alteration, management, destruction, regulation, and sustainability of a valued natural resource on the landscape; and the challenges and promises of re-imagining and recreating a place where we live, work, and play.

Keynote Address: Beyond the Metropolis: Remapping American Urban History by Andrew Needham, New York University


Transportation and Urban Design: A discussion of the factors—such as laws, technology, population growth, economic pressures, and underlying assumptions—that have affected the development of Utah’s contemporary and historic transportation systems. Historic
Architecture and Power: A discussion of the power dynamics reflected in historic and modern architecture. The panel will juxtapose the Salt Lake Temple and the City Hall Building, the LDS Conference Center and the Salt Lake City Library, City Creek and the Gateway—buildings and campuses that visually and geographically reflect religious and secular forces at play in Utah’s capital city.
Water and the Unsustainable Landscape: An exploration of the role of a dwindling natural resource on the built environment. From the lofty Wasatch Mountains to the Great Salt Lake, water has shaped and dictated human interaction on the eastern edge of the Great Basin, contributing to large-scale and, in some cases, unsustainable manipulation of the landscape.

This symposium, presented by the Utah State Historical Society and Utah Historical Quarterly, is free and open to the public but registration is requested.There is a cost for parking in the library parking garage. RSVP at


Winter 2016

UHQ-Hyrum-Event-FlyerOral History Workshop – Presented jointly by Utah Humanities & the Utah Division of State History – Utah & the World Wars – A Utah Historical Quarterly Special Event

The winter 2016 Utah Historical Quarterly event will take place on February 18, 2016, at the Hyrum City Museum. This free, public lecture will feature artifacts from both world wars with the nationally known collector Brent Ashworth, as well as the history of Cache Valley veterans. The lecture begins at 1 p.m.

Earlier in the day, from 9 a.m. to noon, Utah Humanities and the Utah State Historical Society will present a free workshop about conducting oral history. Please RSVP to

Fall 2015

The Waterpocket Fold and Greater Capitol Reef
Friday, November 20, 4:00 p.m.
The Downtown City Library, 4th Floor, Room 4
210 East 400 South, Salt Lake City, Utah

WaterpocketFoldThe Waterpocket Fold stretches like a reptilian spine across one hundred miles of broken desert lands along the western edge of the Colorado Plateau. This event will reflect on this landmark geologic formation—centerpiece of Capitol Reef National Park—its history, and the broader landscape surrounding the Fold.

Ralph Becker, currently mayor Salt Lake City, completed a 176-mile hike along the entire length of the Fold as a young man. Since then, he has explored by vehicle, bike, boat, and foot the region around Capitol Reef National Park—including the treasures of Boulder Mountain, the Henry Mountains, Thousand Lakes Mountain, the side canyons of the Dirty Devil River, and the wilderness of the Escalante. In this presentation, he will tell the story of his Waterpocket Fold trek and look back on changes in the Capitol Reef region in the intervening years. Becker’s diary of his Waterpocket Fold trek appears in the fall 2015 issue of the Utah Historical Quarterly.

Stephen Trimble, writer, photographer and naturalist, was a ranger at Capitol Reef in 1975 and has been writing and photographing in the park and surrounding canyon country ever since. He’ll place Becker’s journal in the context of our creative response to the Waterpocket Fold over 150 years. Trimble has published twenty-two books on western landscape and native peoples. He’s beginning to gather pieces for “The Capitol Reef Reader,” which he’ll edit for the University of Utah Press. Trimble makes his home in Salt Lake City and in Torrey, Utah.

Free and Open to the Public

Part of a regular series of lectures highlighting the work and scholarship of Utah Historical Quarterly, Utah’s official historical journal. This is part of a continuing series of interviews and events featuring current state leaders in their intersections with Utah history.

Summer 2015

Created and Preserved: Using Objects to Understand Women in Utah History
Wednesday, July 22, 4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Thatcher-Young Mansion, 35 West 100 South, Logan, UT 84321

Three-genThe July 2015 Utah Historical Quarterly lecture will focus on the experiences of Utah women in the late 1800s and early 1900s, in part by examining objects that they created, used, and preserved. Christine Cooper-Rompato, an English professor at USU, will describe the inventions and lives of several nineteenth-century Utah women who received patents in their own names. Holly George, co-managing editor of UHQ, will discuss a remarkable collection of wedding dresses at the Utah State Historical Society that comes from five generations of a Utah family. The lecture is free and open to the public.

View full color photo gallery of the wedding dress collection housed at the Utah State Historical Society.


Spring 2015

Inventing the State of Deseret
May 20, 4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Eccles Community Art Center in Ogden, Utah

deseretBruce Worthen discusses the tense negotiations between the Mormons and Washington over statehood, as seen through the eyes of Utah’s congregational delegate John Bernhisel. In 1849, Bernhisel helped create a fictitious government known as the “State of Deseret” to allay the fears of Congress about the Mormons. Instead, as Worthen argues, it almost led to war in 1852.

Winter 2015

History as Art and Craft: A Conversation with Historians
February 19, 4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Washington County Historic Courthouse, St. George, Utah

imageWhat is the nature of historical knowledge: How do historians ply their trade, tackle complex and often controversial topics, and seek meaning and significance in the past? Why do historians come to different conclusions about the past? We’ve assembled a cast of historians to speak about the philosophy and craft of history, with special emphasis on Juanita Brooks and the history of southern Utah.

Read written transcript UHQ-History as Art and Craft
Event Flier 2-19-15